LMAX Exchange officially names debut Clipper Race entry

25 August 2015

LMAX Exchange is making its ocean-racing debut in the Clipper 2015-16 Race and tonight was its turn to take the show pontoon limelight and officially name its yacht in St Katharine Docks ahead of Sunday’s Race Start.

Before soaking the bow of the boat in the obligatory champagne ceremony, LMAX Exchange’s CEO David Mercer told Sir Robin Knox-Johnston and a captive crowd of clients and business associates: “The Clipper Race is a great fit for LMAX Exchange. It means extraordinary feats for ordinary people, and matches our global vision. We ourselves have clients in over 90 countries and we’re visiting many of them on this trip.

LMAX Exchange has been at the forefront of financial technology in the UK since its inception in 2010. With a growing international client base, the FX company is helping lead the way for UK tech companies looking to take their services overseas. CEO David Mercer is set on expanding this reach even further to become a global leader in FX.

On the importance of in-port activations along the race route, David added: “Engagement on the race is key for us. We will certainly be running big destination events in New York, Sydney and back here in London for our customers. Many of our customers are banks, funds, brokers and even individuals. China is a long term opportunity for us so Qingdao will also be a significant activation market.”

Asked what he thought of meeting his team’s skipper for the first time, David remarked: “Allez Olivier, il est fantastique! He really is the perfect skipper for LMAX Exchange. He tells me he likes the colour scheme as he says a black boat is a fast boat, so I’m hoping he can be fast all around the world. My prediction for the overall race result is pretty easy. We like to win.”

After completing the Arctic Rugby Challenge earlier this year, could the race be David's next big challenge? “I would actually love to do the Clipper Race myself. “I’m really very envious of all the crew members who will be racing on this team. I’m going to actually see if I can join them for a leg of the race at some point, so let’s see.”

It was then the turn of LMAX Exchange skipper Olivier Cardin to take the main stage. Asked by Sir Robin about how he is feeling as the race draws approaches, Olivier told the crowd: “The preparation for the race is going very well. All the team is very involved and we are working very hard together. Thank you to my whole team for doing an excellent job.

“We have the best team so our goal is first place. LMAX Exchange has won lots of awards itself, so I think we need to do the same!”

Valerie Phakeovilay, 36, is an LMAX Exchange crew member who is originally from France but now lives in London working in IT for Fujitsu. She is preparing to race on the opening leg to Rio and says:
“It has been a pleasure to get to know the team at LMAX Exchange tonight. I am particularly very pleased that our sponsor is as ‘racey’ as our skipper. I definitely feel very proud and happy as I am very race driven myself. I didn’t sign up to cruise. We can only do our best but hopefully we get a podium position.

“The whole team is very excited. We’ve been working really hard on the boat as Olivier said. We’ve been very involved and people have flown from all over Europe to help us, over the weekends and all hours. It’s getting very close and we’re definitely now ready to go!”

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