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Daniel Skowronski wants OANDA to reinvent itself without losing

I had the chance to chat with Daniel Skowronski, the new MD Europe of OANDA. We talked about his plans for the company, current conditions in the industry, technology, and more.

Daniel Skowronski made his way from an interbank trader at big international banks since 1991 via various positions in management and marketing in the world of retail trading. His successful career brought him most recently to be the CEO of Alpari UK in 2010, and he has now assumed the position of Managing Director for OANDA EMEA.

Skowronski and OANDA

Before ultimately joining OANDA, Skowronski saw many advantages in the company: a strong brand reputation, an emphasis on technology, and open and transparent business practices for its customers. However, Skowronski believes the firm needs a greater emphasis on localized offerings, which UK consumers are interested in.

Despite various business challenges localizing the product outside North America, OANDA’s growth via word of mouth growth has been strong and impressive, says Skowronski.

Skowronski is developing a strategy for EMEA that will focus on geographical expansion and localized offerings for each.

He compares OANDA as the Apple of forex. The computing giant has been able to reinvent itself several times while maintaining the original spirit and the coolness. Change is inevitable as we grow further, especially in localization, but that doesn’t mean losing our OANDAness.

OANDA’s Vice President of Product Management, Trevor Young, also compared OANDA to Apple, when referring to its partnership model.

The state of the forex industry

The forex industry is growing in general. Contraction in some regions is mostly due to regulation. In Skowronski’s region, the main markets are the UK and Germany, and that’s where the immediate focus is. He also identifies growing FX market potential in Russia and the Middle East.

The FCA in the UK finds a good balance between business and customers and manages to remain ahead of the curve. Outside the region, there is a good buzz in Australia. In particular, CFDs and especially single share CFDs are of interest. The world’s No. 2 economy, China, is also consistently growing.

Low volatility

The recent drop in volatility, as well as more regulation, could trigger more consolidation with smaller brokers focusing on local market in order to survive, says Skowronski.

OANDA is prepared to deal with lower volatility: the company has a lot of free educational tools, like the Forex Order Book and Top 100 Forex Traders Statistics, which help traders to trade better in various market conditions. The firm has been ahead of competition in this sense, states Skowronski.

This is reflected in profitability figures: OANDA clients enjoy a high profitability rate of 42% according to recent figures published in the US. This is significantly above the average of peer brokers.

Pushing the envelope on technology

Skowronski states that it is not only education. OANDA’s proprietary technology, enabling some of the lowest latency in the industry and its position as a Market Maker, contributes to a higher success rate for traders. The broker also recently launched its copy-trading service, the OANDA Trade Leaders Programme (originally developed by Currensee, a company OANDA acquired last year) has seen good uptake with a broad spectrum of traders.

Skowronski reveals that OANDA is not taking a break on the mobile front: after launching an impressive new version of its app: “a new significant upgrade is planned for the near future, which will solidify our leadership position in the mobile trading space” says Skowronski.

Yohay Elam

Yohay Elam

Yohay Elam: Founder, Writer and Editor I have been into forex trading for over 5 years, and I share the experience that I have and the knowledge that I've accumulated. After taking a short course about forex. Like many forex traders, I've earned a significant share of my knowledge the hard way. Macroeconomics, the impact of news on the ever-moving currency markets and trading psychology have always fascinated me. Before founding Forex Crunch, I've worked as a programmer in various hi-tech companies. I have a B. Sc. in Computer Science from Ben Gurion University. Given this background, forex software has a relatively bigger share in the posts.