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The 2017 Tech 40: Seth Merrin

< The 2017 Tech 4025. Seth MerrinChief Executive OfficerLiquidnet HoldingsLast year: 22

"Business is just a set of problems to solve," Seth Merrin writes in The Power of Positive Destruction, a combination personal memoir and entrepreneurial how-to manual published in December. "It's really the book of Liquidnet," that is, the company he founded and went live with in 2001 with a trading platform for institutions whose large stock orders had become too difficult to transact on traditional exchanges. A lot of sweat went into growing the network from 38 buy-side firms at the start to more than 850 today, trading in 44 markets around the globe. That's not to mention the bumps along Merrin's career path and in multiple startups, including Merrin Financial, which pioneered the buy-side trade order management system. "I made tons of mistakes," he admits, now hoping others can learn from his experiences. As the title of the book, co-written with Carlye Adler, suggests, the Liquidnet Holdings CEO, 57, remains every bit the entrepreneur scoping out opportunities for disruption. "We are in institutional fintech," he says, noting that about a third of Liquidnet's 400-plus employees are technologists. "That is our core competency," he adds. In the book he urges that technology be embraced as a competitive advantage, but adds: "Understand that with the pace of technological change, the disrupter can easily become the disrupted. Positive destruction must be constant."

 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