Pepperstone Is Looking For Cheap Acquisitions In The Carnage Left By The Swiss Currency Play

Joe Davenport (L) and Owen Kerr.

Australian online foreign exchange broker Pepperstone has its competitors in sight as it goes bargain hunting in the carnage left by the Swiss central bank’s withdrawal from pegging against the Euro.

The unexpected move by Switzerland pushed the Swiss Franc 30% higher and sent a series of foreign exchange brokers to insolvency, including UK-based Alpari and New Zealand’s Excel Markets. Others reported heavy losses.

The shake-up has seen Pepperstone move up the global rankings to 8th largest foreign exchange broker from 11th.

“There are a lot of cheap players out there and we may be ­focusing on that in the time being,” Owen Kerr, Pepperstone co-founder, told the Australian Financial Review.

“It’s a unique opportunity. (Our focus is) ­picking up our competitors for cheap and building scale through acquisitions. Bigger, stronger players with the right infrastructure will emerge.”

30-year-old Kerr last year entered the BRW Top 200 Rich List with a ­net worth of $300 million.

Kerr and fellow co-founder Joe Davenport were named the 2014 Australian EY Entrepreneurs Of The Year.

There’s more of the interview with Kerr here.