Chris Reynolds of GO Markets, Jafar Calley of FXOpen, Sergei Shuvalov of Liteforex, Thomas Shelby of FIBO Group and Costas Kappai of Trading Point
1. Which broker company are you a representative of and how long have you been one?
Chris: I am the Director of Operations for GO Markets. I have been working here for just over four and a half years.
Jafar: I have been a representative of FXOpen since early 2006. FXOpen was just one of 3 brokers that RebateFX was working with but became exclusive to FXOpen in 2007 due to having a much closer relationship with the company and a promise to lend a higher level of support for my personal clients.
Sergei: LiteForex for 2 years.
Thomas: I am the representative of FIBO Group Holdings Ltd.
Costas: I have been the representative for Trading Point of Financial Instruments Limited (Trading Point for short) for the past 11 months.
2. Do you get any perks as a representative?
Chris: It is all part of the job!
Jafar: [I]I began with the company just as an IB, but FXOpen recognized my hard work by giving me a salaried position in the company. As I am now Worldwide Head of Client Support at FXOpen, I can give FXOpen’s clients an unprecedented level of personalized support for their trading needs.
Since I am not just a corporate manager, but also a trader I can look at client’s problems from their own perspective. I believe that a broker’s client support staff should also be traders so they have an intimate knowledge of not only the platform and back office operations, but also of the trader’s mindset. FXOpen rewards hard work generously.[/I]
Sergei: Nothing special (just my own office, personal secretary, driver and cook).
Thomas: My main perk is making sure that our clients have the correct information. If our clients are happy, then I am happy.
Costas: The main perk I receive I guess would be the recognition I get through my representation in the Forex Industry. (Let me know if other representatives get any real perks and I will push for some.
3. What’s the one thing most people don’t know about your company?
Chris: GO Markets is celebrating our fifth birthday this month and another thing…our CEO can’t catch a football, tennis ball, any ball!
Jafar: Internally, we are more like a family than a company. The management consider each other to be close friends and go on outings together, invite each other to dinner etc.. Working for FXOpen is not just a job. It’s a lifestyle.
Sergei: We were one of the first in the world to develop forex cent accounts.
Thomas: We have been around for a long time, we were established in 1998.
Costas: Well as we are fully transparent it is hard to say; but possibly the fact that our clients can deposit and start trading with as little as $5, with which they may perform trades of as little as 0.01 Micro lots (10 units).
4. What’s the weirdest/funniest question you’ve encountered as a rep?
Chris: It is not really a question, but the unfortunate story of a client who had his entire account wiped out by his young son who assumed it was a game!
Jafar: I received an offer once to “invest” in an Oil tanker anchored off the coast of Nigeria.
Sergei: A young lady asked what she needed to do to withdraw money from her demo account (she had about 40000 dollars at the moment).
Thomas: The funniest question I have encountered as a representative is: “Is this an acceptable ID?” and they had attached a picture of themselves on holiday with their signature at the bottom.
Costas: [I] I have been asked a few weird/funny things over the past 11 months with regards to our company and Forex in general.
The weirdest would be probably when I was asked in a private chat if it was possible to open an account with our company from a person who only had a first name. He claimed that he had no surname and as such was wondering if he could open one with just his first name. The funny questions are when potential clients request for a loan and say that they will give it back when they start making some money….needless to say we do not accommodate for loans.[/I]
5. What’s the most common question you get asked?
Chris: “Why should I trade with GO Markets?” which is strange seeing as the answer seems so obvious to me.
Jafar: “How do I withdraw my profits”, “How long does a withdrawal take?”, “What is the difference between standard and ECN accounts?”, for example. The questions however are actually important to a trader. When a trader is comfortable with the back office operations and trading conditions, the real business of analysis and trading is much easier.
Sergei: “I don’t have time to read through all this. What shall I do to start trading right now?”
Thomas: “What is your spread?” This seems to be the most important factor in a client opening an account with us as we have very competitive spreads.
Costas: “Do you accept US clients?” and yes we do.
6. How would you describe your company’s clients?
Chris: Are mostly either people relatively new to forex having moved across from trading shares and CFDs or the more experienced retail traders. We have a large amount of clients who use Expert Advisors proving that automated trading is very popular at the moment!
Jafar: They come from all over the world and from different backgrounds. There is really no one way to describe our clients since they are as diverse as the whole world is.
Sergei: They are usually nice, quiet and adequate people.
Thomas: They are “diverse, young and aspirational.”
Costas: [I]Our company’s clients vary as they are from all over the world, but the one thing they have in common is loyalty. Almost all of our clients that we have had so far have remained with us due to the fact that we are a very customer oriented broker.
We have purposefully placed strong emphasis on creating a long term relationship with our clients by placing our client’s interests first and accommodating ourselves to suit our varied client’s needs. We are smart enough to know that once our clients are satisfied, our success will follow.[/I]
7. How did you come to work for a forex broker?
Chris: I was working as a derivatives dealer at a London brokerage when I was approached by a recruiter to move to Melbourne, Australia to work in forex sales for nine months. Almost five years later, and I am still here!
Jafar: When I started my IB business, FXOpen’s Development Manager recognized that I was pulling in a large number of clients and was seen bending over backwards to give them the best level of service I could possibly give them. I was soon offered a job and progressed to management from there.
Sergei: I’ve got a financial background as well as an experience in financial companies. I’ve known a lot of good people in the industry and they’ve known me. And one day I got an offer from LiteForex (which I couldn’t refuse) and joined the company.
Thomas: I began working in forex because I wanted a career change from the Telecommunications sector in which I was previously employed.
Costas: Having studied Mathematics and Statistics at University, I have always been intrigued with numbers and patterns and have came to find Forex very interesting, especially the Technical Analysis side of it; an area in which I am currently focusing on. Forex for me is very exciting and always keeps you on the edge of your seat due to the high volumes of money that is being traded daily and the potential for profit making.
8. Where are you from?
Chris: Essex in England, which is just East of London.
Jafar: Perth in Western Australia.
Thomas: United Kingdom.
Costas: I am an Irish-Cypriot. I have lived half of my life in Ireland and half in Cyprus. Currently I reside in Limassol, Cyprus.
9. We ran a poll recently asking which forum type our members are, which one do you think you fall under?
Chris: The Eagle Scout, although some may say the Evil Clown could also be applied to me.
Jafar: That was a funny thread. I probably fit into the “Godfather” description. Rather than inflating my post count by posting for the sake of it, I tend to post when I have something meaningful to add to the conversation and I usually spend a bit of time in formulating a reply to someone.
Sergei: Emm… I like all of them.
Thomas: I think I would fall under Eagle Scout, but maybe masquerade as something else…….
Costas: Hmm, I guess I would have to be the Eagle Scout to a certain extent.
10. What do you do for fun? Any hobbies?
Chris: I am a very keen follower of most sports including Football (soccer) and Cricket. I also enjoy a flutter on the horses from time to time.
Jafar: I like to watch Drift races, and I am (to my wife’s consternation) a gamer. I play mostly Starcraft 2 at the moment which has a huge “esports” scene. Some Starcraft 2 players make a good living just from playing the game in tournaments!
Sergei: I like sports, especially swimming, running and fencing.
Thomas: I play Football or Soccer as they say in the US. I also enjoy walking my dog and going to the beach.
Costas: In my spare time I usually hang out with colleagues from work or you will find me glued to my computer, either watching the Forex market and/or watching American TV Series such as Dexter, Workaholics, House…and the list goes on – Yes I am a bit of an addict with TV series. I play 5 a-side football on a weekly basis and like to play poker now and again. I also have a keen interest in studying about the Universe and space – should you share such interest I would recommend a book by Stephen Hawkins called “The Universe in a Nutshell”.
11. What’s your pet peeve?
Chris: Inexcusable lateness.
Jafar: I do not like those who deceive others just to get clients. Some IB representatives do it, some brokers do it. I will even risk sparking off a broker war if I become aware of something that is blatantly wrong where people are being duped into something that is not in their best interests or just plain lies.
Sergei: Tax inspectors. Why they are always so unfriendly and negative?
Thomas: My pet peeve would be drivers not indicating left or right when they switch lanes or turn!!
Costas: Smoking – not from a healthy conscious point of view but rather that I cannot stand the smell. It’s a good thing the law does not allow for smoking in public places anymore.
12. Are you single – this is for all the ladies out there that are too shy to ask!
Chris: Yes, I am single. Ladies: Form an orderly queue.
Jafar: I am happily married to a nice Egyptian woman.
Sergei: I’m single. Though I’m ready to consider any offers.
Thomas: I am currently single. Female forex traders may send me a private message
Costas: I’m sure all the shy ladies out there will be thrilled to hear I am single!
13. What was your dream back when you were a kid?
Chris: I am still clinging to the dream that one day I will be a professional footballer, although those days are probably in the past!
Jafar: I’ve always dreamt of being an astronaut or to be abducted by aliens and taken into space. I guess that explains my obsession with Science Fiction movies and books.
Sergei: I wanted to have a big red fire truck.
Thomas: My dream was to become a famous footballer. Unfortunately me feet are not as fast as my head.
Costas: If you mean in terms of career, then I cannot remember; but I have always been intrigued with travelling and visiting different cultures. I would ideally like to visit such places like Japan, China and Australia and live in these countries for extended periods of times so as to see experience their way of life.
13. If you weren’t in the forex broker industry, what do you think would you be doing?
Chris: If we take out the entire finance industry, it would probably be something to do with computers. Or male modeling.
Jafar: I think I would be involved in an industry that involved meeting people from diverse backgrounds. I am somewhat of a cultural sponge. When I travel, I like to soak up the local culture as much as possible. Eating like the locals, dressing like them, sitting and drinking tea with them (tea is universal), doing things that they like to do. Maybe I should be a travelling travel agent?
Sergei: Anyway my job would be connected with finance.
Thomas: If I didn’t work in the forex industry, I think I would be working on a beach, doing water sports like when I was a teenager.
Costas: I think I would be a mathematics/statistics teacher as I am very keen on these topics and have always had a flare for teaching.