Brad Katsuyama’s IEX is shuttering its listings business

Scott Gamm

IEX is exiting its corporate listings business, the company announced on Monday.

The business began roughly one year ago in September 2018. IEX’s only listed company, Interactive Brokers (IBKR), which began trading on its exchange in October 2018, will switch to the Nasdaq (NDAQ) on Oct. 7.

Brad Katsuyama, CEO and co-founder of IEX, speaks at the 2017 Forbes Under 30 Summit in Boston, Massachusetts, U.S. October 2, 2017. REUTERS/Brian Snyder

“The decision to exit the listings business was a tough one emotionally — those who know IEX know we don’t shy away from a good fight,” said IEX co-founder and CEO Brad Katsuyama. “But it is the right decision to make at this moment.”

In a September 2018 press release announcing the launch of its listings business, Katsuyama characterized the industry as having “40 years of duopoly.” The aforementioned Nasdaq and Intercontinental Exchange’s (ICE) New York Stock Exchange are the dominant venues in which companies list their stock.

One year later, even Katsuyama acknowledges the difficulty of competing in a space with such established players.

“After a year, it has become clear that the legacy exchanges have a stronghold on this market, and, to succeed, we would need to compete in a way that does not align with our mission to build fairer markets,” Katsuyama added. “Therefore, the best choice for us at this time is to exit listings and to serve companies in a way that is more aligned with IEX's strengths and our brand.”

Katsuyama rose to prominence in 2014 after being featured in Flash Boys by Michael Lewis.

Scott Gamm is a reporter at Yahoo Finance. Follow him on Twitter @ScottGamm.

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