One of the hottest startups in finance has suffered a big setback

Algomi, an information platform that was once touted as a potential fintech “unicorn,” has suffered a big blow to its US ambitions.

Deutsche Bank, Algomi’s biggest client, has all but stopped using the service in the US, according to two people familiar with the matter.

The German bank is still using Algomi in Europe, the people said.

Algomi runs what it calls a Honeycomb Network, a kind of social network for bond market participants, making trading information available to traders, salespeople and investors. It works with over 100 buy-side clients, according to the firm, and more than 10 investment banks. The company declined to comment.

Deutsche Bank has a global contract with Algomi, rather than a regional arrangement, and Algomi is still receiving data from Deutsche Bank in the US, according to people familiar with the matter.

The bank is still evaluating the use of Algomi in the US, according to one person familiar with the matter.

Still, having a key client in the US all but stop using the service is a big setback for London-based Algomi, which has big ambitions for the market.

It grew its team in the US from one person to 20, and moved into a new office last year in New York. It said in September it was particularly focused on recruiting technology professionals and client service specialists and that it had plans to develop services tailored to the US market.

Then, in November, the head of its US business, Stephen Gallagher, left to pursue other opportunities. He still hasn’t been replaced, and the search for a new head is continuing, according people familiar with the matter.

The firm also cut 10% of its global workforce in November last year.

Algomi CEO Stu Taylor sent BI this statement at the time of the job cuts:

Algomi has reached the next level of maturity and will be EBITDA profitable mid 2016 based on recent revenue growth and the huge numbers of client sign up we achieved in 2015 — over 140 buy side and 14 banks plus 2 exchanges are confirmed Algomi clients.

The recent headcount adjustment merely accelerates our move to the next level of financial strength. Our investment in a new NY head office which formally opened this month underlines our long commitment to the US.

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