Former FCA MTF supervisor joins institutional digital asset exchange start-up

Alex Royle has spent the past year leading the supervision of trading venues in the UK for the FCA.

A soon-to-launch institutional digital securities exchange has hired the former supervisor of multilateral and organised trading facilities (MTF and OTF) at the UK’s financial watchdog as chief compliance officer. 

Alex Royle joins Archax Exchange in the senior role ahead of the digital asset exchange’s launch later this year, after the firm filed a regulatory application to operate an MTF in London. Approval is understood to be in the final stages. 

Royle has extensive regulatory experience, having spent the last 10 months with the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) leading supervision of new trading venues launching in the UK. Prior to that, Royle worked with the European Securities and Markets Authority (ESMA) as a seconded national expert in markets policy. He has also previously worked with the FCA in equity and derivatives markets supervision.

“Having seen the wave in interest building around regulated instruments leveraging blockchain and tokenisation technologies, particularly from an institutional angle, I was keen to find a way to utilise my extensive experience in the emerging digital securities space,” Royle commented on his appointment.

“Archax, with its highly experienced team from the financial markets, clear strategy and vision, and its attitude towards regulation, clearly have the proposition to legitimise the space at the institutional level. Having been involved with the FCA’s strategy around crypto and tokenised assets, I now look forward to helping launch the first genuinely institutional market for these instruments.”

Archax Exchange has made several high-profile appointments since confirming plans to launch, with the former chief of strategy at the London Stock Exchange Group, David Lester, among those who have joined the team. The former chief operating officer at CurveGlobal, Steve Hamilton, also departed to join Archax as head of regulation in late 2018.

“Archax is designed to be ‘institutional’ throughout – its technology, systems, operations, processes, team, culture and products. Therefore, compliance and regulation are at the very forefront of our strategy,” Graham Rodford, CEO and co-founder at Archax, added. “We see the tokenisation of assets as the next significant and regulated step in the evolution of the crypto world and something that could potentially revolutionise traditional financial markets too.”