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The 2017 Tech 40: Charles Li

< The 2017 Tech 4013. Charles LiChief Executive OfficerHong Kong Exchanges and ClearingLast year: 15

If global reach and product diversification — and the ability to confront the technology challenges that they pose — separate the elite exchange operators from the rest, then Hong Kong Exchanges and Clearing truly joined the club in 2013 with its $2.2 billion acquisition of the London Metal Exchange. The motivation of Charles Li, HKEX's chief executive officer since 2010, was not mere empire-building: His focus is on growth opportunities in China, including LME's potential to serve Chinese institutional traders' needs. Despite his lobbying efforts, Li has yet to get LME registered on the mainland. But he did gain approval for a surrogate, the Qianhai Mercantile Exchange, which opened in May in Shenzhen. HKEX's fifth active trading venue, Qianhai caters to demand that, according to Li, is not being met by China's three futures markets. The 55-year-old adds that very few contracts on the Chinese exchanges come with an option for physical settlement, and spot market participants are dispersed among hundreds of poorly regulated and highly fragmented trading platforms. "We can't just blindly copy the LME, because China has its own unique characteristics and challenges," Li says. "So we want to leverage the LME to begin tackling some of China's unique structural issues by building a new model that both fills a market vacuum and meets market needs. We want to serve the physical economy and eventually establish benchmark prices for China."

 The 2017 Tech 40Click below to view profiles
1. Adena FriedmanNASDAQ2. Catherine BessantBank of
America Corp.3. Robert GoldsteinBlackRock4. Jeffrey SprecherIntercontinental Exchange5. Lance UgglaIHS Markit
6. Shawn Edwards & Vlad KliatchkoBloomberg7. David CraigThomson Reuters8. Michael SpencerNEX Group9. Don CallahanCitigroup10. Elisha WieselGoldman Sachs Group
11. Michael BodsonDepository Trust & Clearing Corp.12. Terrence DuffyCME Group13. Charles LiHong Kong Exchanges and Clearing14. Sean BelkaFidelity Investments15. Chris ConcannonCBOE Holdings
16. Guy ChiarelloFirst Data Corp.17. Steven LieblichCitadel18. David RutterR3CEV19. Blythe MastersDigital Asset Holdings20. Alfred SpectorTwo Sigma Investments
21. Neil KatzD.E. Shaw Group22. Lee OleskyTradeweb Markets23. Richard McVeyMarketAxess Holdings24. David GledhillDBS Bank25. Seth MerrinLiquidnet Holdings
26. Antoine ShagouryState Street Corp.27. Peter Brown &
Robert Mercer
Renaissance Technologies28. Lou EcclestonTMX Group29. Peter CherecwichNorthern Trust Corp.30. Mike ChinnS&P Global Market Intelligence
31. Chris CorradoLondon Stock Exchange Group32. Neal PawarAQR Capital Management33. Gary NorcrossFidelity National Information Services34. Steven O'HanlonNumerix35. Sebastián CeriaAxioma
36. Brian ConlonFirst Derivatives and Kx Systems37. Tyler KimMaplesFS38. Michael CooperBT Radianz39. Robert SchifelliteBroadridge Financial Solutions40. Jim MinnickeVestment