Two high ranking executives are leaving Liquidnet on Wednesday. Steve Greenblatt, head of issuer services and equity capital markets, and Scott Harrison, global head of product, are both leaving to pursue new opportunities, a spokesperson at the company confirmed.
Liquidnet has already begun the search to find replacements for the two executives, according to the firm. The departures follow several other executive moves. Alfred Eskandar, former head of U.S. equities for Liquidnet, left the company in December. Eskandar later joined Portware as chief executive officer. Eskandar had spent more than a decade at Liquidnet and was among its first hires.
Kevin Lupowitz, another early hire and the chief technologist at Liquidnet for 11 years, left in February 2011 and took a similar position at FXall, a multi-dealer currency trading platform. He is currently chief executive of Direct Markets, a brokerage firm that links issuers directly to investors. Vlad Khandros, who spent more than five years as Liquidnet’s top corporate strategist, left to join UBS a year ago.
Greenblatt joined Liquidnet at the beginning of 2001 and has held various roles over the years, including head of Liquidnet’s corporate strategy group and co-head of global equities. He managed the firm’s original product management team, which was responsible for building the first version of its trading application.
Harrison joined the company just last year from UNX, where he was CEO. He previously spent more than 13 years at ITG, where he held a number positions including director of global trading products and director of product management for equity trading products.
According to John Kelly, Liquidnet’s chief operating officer who joined at the beginning of this year, the two departures were unrelated. Though the firm has had a fair amount of turnover recently, he said it remains focused on its strategy.
"We have a strong product team in place that is always looking at ways to increase the efficiency of our global electronic trading platform, from the internal architecture to the interface between our members and our deep pool of liquidity," Kelly said.
Kelly added that the company’s leadership team has embraced a long-term vision for the firm and has been introducing a number of new initiatives, including helping Liquidnet members with commission management and facilitating the trading of private shares.
One source said he had heard that Harrison was pushing for Liquidnet to introduce a front-end platform. But the firm balked at the strategy, as it has always prided itself on its software product and didn’t want to enter the hardware business. The source added that it was considered only a matter of time before Harrison would leave the firm. That speculation was heightened when former ITG technology veteran, David Provost, left Liquidnet about two months ago. Liquidnet declined to comment, saying it doesn’t comment on personnel issues.