CEO Letter – December 2021

By: Nandini Sukumar, CEO, The WFE Dec 2021

Welcome to the December issue of WFE Focus – what a year it’s been.

For the final issue of 2021, we feature insights from exchange leaders around the world, as they reflect on the unique and challenging patterns of another disrupted year. Despite the many difficulties, the crisis has spurred a wave of market and technological innovation, as well as a new spirit of workplace flexibility. Market infrastructures remain on a strong growth path as we move into 2022. The optimism and resilience that permeates our industry is rooted in the vision and the energy that these leaders embody.

We start in Chicago, where we hear from the WFE’s new Chairman. As retail participation in trading equities, derivatives and cryptocurrency increases, Cboe Global Markets is playing a role to ensure these newly empowered investors are here to stay, says Ed Tilly, Chairman, CEO & President of the exchange.

In New Zealand, which has had a unique way of handling the pandemic, NZX CEO Mark Peterson writes of how the virus has forced us to stop and think about how we operate our businesses. Despite many challenges, the New Zealand Exchange remains on a rapid growth path and he’s optimistic for the future.

Turning to the Middle East, we hear from a CEO leading a major transformation. After years of battling low liquidity, Muscat Stock Exchange has its sights set on the future. CEO Haitham Al Salmi tells us about his strategy and lays out his vision for the exchange as he embarks on an ambitious journey.

Staying in the region, we hear from Mazen Wathaifi, CEO of the Amman Stock Exchange. The pandemic tested everyone's contingency plans and risk management but the bourse stayed strong and is forging ahead to keep improving market structure in the Middle East, he writes.

Back in Europe, Joseph Portelli, Chairman of the Malta Stock Exchange, reflects on 2021 and offers some thoughts on the future. The exchange has continued seamless remote operations and embarked on projects that will help elevate it to the level of larger European bourses, he says.

In Asia, Bursa Malaysia CEO, Datuk Muhamad Umar Swift, explains how the exchange is helping to ensure efficiency, accessibility and liquidity in a fast-growing emerging market.

We also look at financial literacy in the region, hearing how the China Financial Futures Exchange is doing its part to teach students about financial products. Harry You and Phoebe Zhang, the bourse’s Managing Director and Senior Manager, outline the exchange’s considerable work on an important issue.

And to conclude on a high, Bermuda Stock Exchange CEO, Greg Wojciechowski, tells us how the exchange can punch above its weight, just like triathlete Flora Duffy did at the Tokyo Olympics.

We look forward to returning in January 2022. As the world continues to grapple with the uncertainty, fear and turmoil that the pandemic has generated, market infrastructures remain steadfast and steady. Stay healthy and be strong.

Nandini Sukumar
Chief Executive Officer