Dublin’s ION Group snaps up New York trading tech firm Dash
ION Group, a Dublin-based firm which automates trading workflows, has snapped up Dash Financial, a New York-based options trading technology provider.
It will see ION Group pair Dash alongside its 2018-acquired equities trading product, Fidessa, as it looks to “own the sell-side technology space”, WatersTechnology reports.
The acquisition, signed in December, will close through ION Investment Group (IIG) – ION’s holding company for acquiring and consolidating fintech companies.
Dash is currently owned by Flexpoint Ford, a Chicago-based investment management firm. The newly acquired company’s co-founder, Peter Maragos, will continue to serve as Dash’s CEO under ION.
He cites “ION’s global reach and established network of relationships” as reasons for selling up to a bigger player.
For Italian businessman Andrea Pignataro, ION’s CEO, the deal hinged on Dash’s “domain expertise in options”. Dash’s solution improves execution transparency for both the buy-side and sell-side.
ION’s acquisition history
ION Group has bought a handful of other firms to date.
These include business intelligence provider Acuris in 2019 for $1.85 billion, and trading technology firm Fidessa for £1.5 billion in 2018. It also acquired cross-assets trading software provider Openlink Financial the same year.
In 2017, it bought investment bank platform Dealogic. In 2013, it bought commodity management software provider Triple Point Technology.
Like many firms on acquisition streaks prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, ION paused its buying spree in 2020. Which means Dash marks its first acquisition since 2019.
ION doesn’t seem to be letting up this year on the acquisition front either. According to two Reuters sources, it’s nearing a deal to buy Italian banking software provider Cedacri for around $1.8 billion.
The firm has reportedly beaten IT consultancy Accenture and Italian IT services provider Engineering in its bid for Cedacri.
ION’s CEO, Pignataro – a former Salomon Brothers bond trader – has also launched two special purpose acquisition companies (Spacs). They’re called ScION Tech Growth I and II, designed to invest in financial technology and services assets.