Best single-dealer platform: Citi

Best single-dealer platform: Citi

FX Markets e-FX Awards 2023 Winner-BB8

To better connect its various FX solutions and allow its client base access to a broader set of markets, Citi has undertaken an ambitious project to consolidate its entire FX offering under its single-dealer platform

Amid the whirlwind of world events that unfolded in 2022 and the market volatility that followed in its path, market participants naturally turned to liquidity providers and primary markets such as Citi that they could trust to meet all of their specific FX trading needs. 

Ala'a Saeed, Citi
Ala’a Saeed, Citi

“In times of extreme volatility, we see a flight to quality,” says Ala’a Saeed, global head of FX electronic platforms at Citi. “The single-dealer platform continues to be the best framework where market participants have a relationship with a large bank.”

To maintain its edge as an industry-leading FX franchise, Citi made significant consolidation in its offering in 2022. In contrast to the fragmented nature of the wider FX industry, Citi sought to better connect the disparate parts of its FX solution by improving the way it makes and distributes prices to clients. As such, the bank unified the price and spread structure across the full spectrum of its client base and channelled it through a new version of its Velocity single-dealer platform.

As part of the consolidation process, Citi merged its FX Pulse platform – which has traditionally catered to corporates – with Velocity FX, which, historically, was oriented towards institutional clients. To better serve emerging markets, Citi also improved its cross-border payment offering, as well as its custody FX product, both of which now fall under the Velocity umbrella. The consolidated single-dealer platform – Velocity 3.0 – now houses all of Citi’s FX electronic offering under one roof.

“By consolidating our FX offering, we’ve essentially brought the full scope of what we do as an industry-leading FX business to all our clients in one place,” says Saeed. “The combined product solves more client use cases and better serves our clients’ needs. Corporates now have access to the full connectivity and breadth of execution Velocity offers, while institutional clients now get the full scope of onshore emerging markets execution. It’s a very powerful proposition that caters to a very broad client base.”

While in the preceding 10 years Citi focused on tailoring the needs of particular client segments through distinct FX solutions – such as professional investors, corporates, prime brokerage and research – the bank noticed that, in the past few years, the lines between these segments were beginning to blur. Professional investors were starting to look for access to the bank’s local market franchise, and corporates were seeking more sophisticated methods of execution.

With the consolidated platform, all client segments now benefit from the improved quality of available liquidity and access to a broadened number of markets and currencies, which are accessible electronically – particularly important for certain emerging markets they may not have previously had access to. 

As Citi’s one-stop shop for all things e-FX, Velocity 3.0 enriches the user experience of its clients because it eliminates the need to subscribe to multiple solutions that only satisfy part of their FX requirements. As such, the platform benefits from efficiencies of scale within the scope of FX solutions Citi offers in-house, but also opens up the platform for better integration of outside vendors. 

“Consolidating our technology stack is part of our simplification strategy to deliver the full breadth of FX capabilities to clients across all distribution channels, whether via desktop, web or mobile. Having a single client-based application also reduces maintenance overhead, making it easier for us to deploy upgrades and address cyber security issues,” says Saeed.

“We’ve consolidated all our proprietary technology to be scalable, and have built the framework in such a way to allow us to plug in best-in-class third-party offerings we’ve identified by working with our clients.”

Velocity 3.0 is currently available in most jurisdictions and will be rolled out worldwide over the next year.

Citi was named Best single-dealer platform at the 2023 FX Markets e-FX Awards.

You need to sign in to use this feature. If you don’t have a FX Markets account, please register for a trial.

Sign in
You are currently on corporate access.

To use this feature you will need an individual account. If you have one already please sign in.

Sign in.

Alternatively you can request an indvidual account here: