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Liquidnet Appoints Industry Veteran John Kelly as Chief Operating Officer

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New York
Liquidnet, the global institutional trading network, announced today the appointment of John Kelly as Chief Operating Officer and member of the leadership team effective immediately. In this new role for the company, John will be responsible for driving revenue across all of Liquidnet’s businesses globally. He will be based in New York reporting directly to Liquidnet Founder and CEO Seth Merrin.

“John possesses the skills and diverse experience that we have been looking for in a COO. With more than three decades of leadership roles in equity capital markets, investment banking, and trading, I look forward to John playing a significant role in helping us enter new business segments, expand our capital markets business and accelerate the growth of our institutional trading network globally,” commented Merrin.

Most recently, John worked directly with John L. Thornton, former President of Goldman Sachs, providing advisory services to private investors and management around the world. Prior to that, he held several senior positions at Société Générale in the U.S. including Head of Capital Markets, Chief Operating Officer of the U.S. investment banking business, and Head of Portfolio Management for SG Americas. John has also held leadership positions at Rockefeller Family & Associates where he managed private equity investments, Bear Stearns where he was Head of Asian Fixed Income Capital Markets, and The First Boston Corporation (now Credit Suisse) where he was a founding member of the Capital Markets Group. John also served on the board of The Victory Portfolios, a $13 billion mutual fund complex, and is a director of AmeriCares, a humanitarian aid and disaster relief organization.  John has a Bachelor of Arts in American Studies from Yale University and an MBA from the Yale School of Management. 

“I am excited to join the Liquidnet team at this particularly dynamic time in the market. One of the hallmarks of the Liquidnet culture is the conviction that innovation can change the way business is done, even in the face of significant obstacles. I am looking forward to working with the entire Liquidnet team to pursue growth opportunities while further enhancing the remarkably strong platform that Liquidnet has built to serve the world’s leading asset management firms,” commented Kelly.

Liquidnet also named Lugene Forte as Head of Sales and Trading Operations in the U.S.  In this role, Lugene will have complete oversight of the U.S. Equities business reporting directly to John Kelly.  She will also join the Liquidnet leadership team.

“Lugene brings a wide range of experience and insight to this role and the equities trading business overall.  Lugene and her team will deliver enhanced and solution-focused offerings that continue to give our Members a competitive advantage over their peers,” continued Kelly.

Lugene brings to Liquidnet more than 25 years’ experience in the institutional equity and fixed income space. Most recently, Lugene was Senior Vice President of Transition Services and Senior Vice President of Algorithmic Trading Services at Investment Technology Group (ITG). Prior to that, she co-founded First Principle, an institutional fixed income broker dealer where she was Chief Operating Officer. Lugene has also held leadership roles at BNY Brokerage where she was Managing Director of Client and Product management.  She served as Chief Financial Officer and Head of Institutional Sales for Autranet, Inc., a wholly owned independent research subsidiary of Donaldson Lufkin & Jenrette. Lugene holds a Bachelor of Arts in Accounting from Franklin and Marshall College.

About Liquidnet

Liquidnet is the global institutional trading network that connects over 700 of the world’s top asset managers to large-scale equity trading opportunities across the globe — 41 markets across five continents. With an average trade size of more than 44,000 shares in the US, 68,800 in Canada, and approximately $1 million in Europe, Africa and Asia Pacific*, Liquidnet is a leader in large block trading globally. Liquidnet does this by going beyond what the retail market can provide by defending and securing the integrity and the anonymity of the block trade while continuously looking for ways to bring in new sources of safe, actionable liquidity from asset management firms, exchanges, brokers and corporations. Asset Managers rely on Liquidnet to help them protect the performance of their portfolios by allowing them to enter and exit their portfolio positions more efficiently. For more information on the Liquidnet community, its liquidity, block executions, and additional investment capabilities, visit


Melissa Kanter, Liquidnet
Global Marketing & Communications
+1 646 660 8469

*as of 1H 2012
©2012 Liquidnet Holdings, Inc. and its subsidiaries. Liquidnet, Inc. is a member of FINRA/SIPC. Liquidnet Europe Limited is authorized and regulated by the Financial Services Authority in the UK, is licensed by the Financial Services Board in South Africa, and is a member of the London Stock Exchange and a remote member of the Warsaw Stock Exchange and SIX Swiss Exchange. Liquidnet Canada Inc. is a member of IIROC and a member of Canadian Investor Protection Fund. Liquidnet Asia Limited is regulated by the Hong Kong Securities and Futures Commission as a licensed dealer and a provider of automated trading services pursuant to the Securities and Futures Ordinance and is regulated by the Monetary Authority of Singapore as a Recognized Market Operator. Liquidnet Japan Inc. is regulated by the Financial Services Agency of Japan and is a member of JSDA/JIPF. Liquidnet Australia Pty Ltd. is registered with the Australian Securities and Investment Commission as an Australian Financial Services Licensee, AFSL number 312525, and is registered with the New Zealand Financial Markets Authority as a Financial Service Provider, FSP number FSP3781.

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