HONG KONG – December 12, 2011 – Bank of America Merrill Lynch (“BofAML”) and Tora Holdings, Inc. (“TORA”), provider of advanced trading technology and financial services, today announced they will partner to provide buy-side clients a broker-neutral co-branded trading platform, Thunder.
Utilizing TORA’s leading multi-broker, multi-market, multi-asset electronic trading solution, Thunder is the first co-branded undertaking in electronic trading services for BofAML and will be the preferred execution management system (“EMS”) for its buy-side clients in Asia.
Thunder is a unique front-to-back office solution which combines BofAML’s equity execution and prime brokerage services with TORA’s advanced trading technology, including integration with BofAML’s sophisticated trading and prime brokerage systems. Buy-side traders will benefit from a complete, seamless trading experience which delivers efficiencies in order placement, sourcing of liquidity, execution management and sales servicing. Through Thunder, traders will also have access to all of BofAML’s electronic tools including its algo suite, stock loan locate functionality, the ability to automatically upload positions to their prime brokerage accounts and comprehensive TCA reporting functionalities.
“This partnership demonstrates BofAML’s commitment to its clients across Asia and beyond,” said Gene Reilly, head of Asia Pacific Cash Equity Trading and Execution Services at Bank of America Merrill Lynch. “It is part of our overall strategy to fully integrate execution into our prime brokerage business, providing our clients a seamless, full-suite of services.”
Robert Dykes, CEO of TORA, adds “TORA is dedicated to offering a superior multi-broker platform which addresses the unique challenges of the buy-side in Asia. We are pleased to be working with BofAML to create distribution opportunities for their execution and prime brokerage businesses as well as enhancing the trader’s experience by providing a fully integrated trading solution. The partnership is testament to TORA’s ability to deliver industry leading technology and trading solutions to clients in the brokerage industry.”
Global Custodian recently announced annual prime brokerage survey with BofAML ranked third overall up from sixth last year. Both clients and non-clients voted BofAML #1 when asked who they intend to appoint as their next prime broker. In Asia Pacific, BofAML was top rated in the areas of client service, operations, financing, margining, securities lending, reporting, prime custodian, hedge fund consulting, capital introduction and value. BofAML also ranked #1 for the second consecutive year in Europe and Capital Introductions, while ranking #2 in Securities Lending and Prime Custodial Services, as well as #3 in Australia and Japan.
TORA’s EMS has become the leading trading platform in Asia with the most comprehensive multi-broker, multi-market and multi-product electronic access. Currently TORA boasts connectivity to more than 700 global and regional brokers across 50 markets in Asia, the Americas and Europe and over 10 off-exchange liquidity venues. 5% of all trading volume on the Tokyo Stock Exchange is processed through TORA.
Bank of America Merrill Lynch
Bank of America Merrill Lynch is the marketing name for the global banking and global markets businesses of Bank of America Corporation. Bank of America Merrill Lynch is a leading global provider of equity, options and futures trading, sales and research services to mutual funds, hedge funds, broker-dealers, pensions, endowments and other institutions. Its award-winning algorithmic trading platform was ranked as one of the top three Pan-European brokerage firms for electronic trading algorithmic quality in the 2011 Thomson Reuters’ Extel Pan-European Survey and one of the top three providers of algorithmic trading in The Trade’s 2010 Algorithmic Trading Awards.
Bank of America is one of the world’s largest financial institutions, serving individual consumers, small- and middle-market businesses and large corporations with a full range of banking, investing, asset management and other financial and risk management products and services. The company provides unmatched convenience in the United States, serving approximately 58 million consumer and small business relationships with approximately 5,800 retail banking offices and approximately 18,000 ATMs and award-winning online banking with 30 million active users. Bank of America is among the world’s leading wealth management companies, and is a global leader in corporate and investment banking and trading across a broad range of asset classes, serving corporations, governments, institutions and individuals around the world. Bank of America offers industry-leading support to approximately 4 million small business owners through a suite of innovative, easy-to-use online products and services. The company serves clients through operations in more than 40 countries. Bank of America Corporation stock (NYSE: BAC) is a component of the Dow Jones Industrial Average and is listed on the New York Stock Exchange. www.bankofamerica.com
Tora Holdings, Inc
TORA is Asia’s leading provider of advanced trading technology and financial services. TORA’s unrivalled solutions span the entire trading process, offering a full suite of trade execution capabilities in markets across Asia, North America and Europe. TORA’s high-performance EMS/OMS has been designed from the ground up by traders, and is currently used by traders at hedge funds, long-only funds and sell-side proprietary trading desks. TORA also provides clients with access to its unique liquidity pools including Asia’s leading non-displayed matching engine. TORA’s dedicated Asia trading desk delivers to buy-side clients unmatched Asia expertise and extensive analytics focused on best execution. TORA’s extensive suite of proprietary algorithms (trading and strategy-focused) is fully customizable and broker neutral. TORA has over 175 employees dedicated to Asia, with offices in Tokyo, Hong Kong, Singapore, Sydney, New York, Los Angeles and San Francisco. www.stage.toratrading.tw