As one of the world’s largest online brokers, Deriv has grown its customer base to more than 2.5 million over the past 23 years. Deriv offers CFDs and other derivatives on forex, indices, cryptocurrencies, commodities and synthetics to its users around the world.
Its Head of Marketing & Global Partnerships, Derek Swift, joined the organisation 16 years ago as an Assistant Internal Auditor, and later took on roles in the Compliance team and Payment Solutions and Anti-Fraud department before filling his current position. Wanda Rich, editor of Global Banking & Finance Review, recently spoke to Derek who, by his own admission, had no knowledge of how foreign exchange worked when he first joined the organisation. “My experience with forex was limited to whenever I travelled for a holiday and needed to convert money to the local currency. Today, I head the Marketing and Global Partnerships department, and I believe I’ve been able to grow my domain knowledge for the same reason that Deriv has thrived over the past 23 years — a commitment to the goal of democratising trading. This motto of making trading accessible to anyone, anywhere, is what has distinguished us from the competition in the past and will be the foundation of our future strategies.”
Deriv’s aptitude in setting itself apart in the forex market is exactly what has led to its current market positioning, as Derek explains. “There are a couple of things that make us different. First, there are our proprietary synthetic indices, a market that’s available to trade 24/7 and is unaffected by regular market hours, global events, and market and liquidity risks. Second, aside from offering a unique product, I would say we’re also distinguished by our customer-centric approach, which allows us to tailor our products and services to our clients. Our trading infrastructure combines the best technology available with solutions for our most valuable assets — our clients and partners.”
It is no coincidence, therefore, that Deriv operates in a manner that is proactive in receiving and acting on client feedback. “Clients need a reliable and robust platform to trade, so we ensure our security standards are top notch for their peace of mind,” Derek said. “Business partners need the organisation they are partnering with to offer in-demand products and services that they can promote to increase their commissions, so we ensure we innovate in line with clients’ suggestions and feedback. In fact, the new payment methods we keep adding are mainly due to the clients’ suggestions.”
From the beginning, Derek explained, Deriv’s goal has been to build platforms that provide its clients with the best fintech solutions. “We currently have various in-house trading platforms and offer other top market platforms that are popular within traders’ communities. For example, we have DBot, our own platform which clients outside of Europe can use to automate their trades, similar to MQ’s expert advisors. The idea is to provide clients with a wide range of options so they can customise their Deriv trading experience.
“In the future, we plan to offer CFDs through social trading options, like copy trading, PAMM, and MAM accounts,” he continued. “Soon, we will also offer research and a signal centre for market insights. Innovation is crucial in fintech, so we are constantly growing and adapting to keep pace with the industry and stay ahead.”
Wanda also asked Derek for his thoughts on what trends investors should be paying attention to. Despite the recent crash of cryptocurrencies, he still believes that they are worth keeping track of in the long run. “All financial markets have their ups and downs, and cryptocurrencies seem to be no different,” he said, though he also stressed that the fear of missing out when following trends can often cause traders to wrongfoot themselves. “Not just those who trade without a plan – there are also instances where traders who have a long-term plan and a specific strategy jump onto the latest fad.”
Finally, Wanda asked Derek about Deriv’s plans for the near future and what innovations its customers can expect. “We are quite excited about the new trading instruments we plan to launch soon. It’s still too early to talk about them, but I believe they will be well-received by our clients and partners, who drive the development of our products and services.”