ACE looks to future with Avenir, GMEX

GMEX Technologies (GMEX TECH), part of the Global Markets Exchange Group International LLP (GMEX Group) and Avenir Technology Limited (Avenir), the UK-based post-trade software firm, report that they have partnered with the Agricultural Commodity Exchange for Africa (ACE).

This partnership will deliver a new state-of-the-art system to issue, manage, trade, clear and settle warehouse receipts for soft commodities. They say the new system will integrate all the functionality of the current ACE systems and processes into a high performance, agile, scalable technology platform, while also paving the way for expansion into derivatives trading, central counterparty clearing and other innovative instruments in the near future. Whereas existing warehouse receipt systems tend to focus on the depository function, ACE has evolved systems and processes that are custom-designed for frontier market contexts which integrate depository services with pricing, financing, trading and information vending solutions, we learn.

The partnership will benefit from ACE’s in-depth physical soft commodities exchange and clearing & settlement business knowledge; coupled with GMEX TECH’s exchange technology knowledge and Avenir’s post trade technology knowledge. It was facilitated by leading developing markets expert Adam Gross, Director of Darhei Noam, a boutique emerging markets consultancy focused on the commodities and capital markets space. The solution will be initially deployed at ACE during 2015 and will also be offered by GMEX TECH to commodity markets across Africa and internationally.

Africa is described as the world’s frontier for commodity exchange development, attracting the interest of domestic investors as well as large international commodity exchange groups. With the competitive global business environment, African countries need to put in place viable exchanges that offer the services demanded by the continent’s economies. In recent research the African Development Bank has cited that a fully functioning derivatives and commodity exchange market will be pivotal in improving competitiveness, facilitating both domestic and international trade and integration of the continent to the global economy.

Kristian Schach Møller, CEO of ACE commented: “ACE has in the past decade perfected its services to cater for the needs of small farmers and thereby develop rural economies. The next decade will be all about scale and this partnership will bring first world technology to the farmer’s doorstep and ensure that millions of farmers can access essential services.”

Stuart Turner, CEO and co-founder of Avenir commented: “We are delighted to be able to develop our existing products to provide a cost-effective, easily accessible solution for Malawi and other developing markets. An effective warehouse receipt solution provides proven, tangible benefits for poor farmers as they can better maximise their returns for the benefit of their families and the wider community.”

Hirander Misra, CEO and co-founder of GMEX Group added: “The solution provided by this partnership will transform African commodity exchange development. It will act as an enabler for the establishment of cost-effective, well structured exchanges for trading physical soft commodities across Africa and globally with an efficient warehouse receipts system and delivery mechanism.”