Paris-based online brokerage and asset manager Cortal Consors added to its long record of innovation by introducing an iPhone trading application this spring. In Germany alone, 13,000 customers downloaded the app within 20 days, says Olivier Le Grand, who started as CFO of Cortal in 1987 and became CEO in 1989 and chairman in 1995 retaining those titles after the BNP Paribas units 2002 merger with Germanys Consors.
Today, the 57-year-old not only presides over the online business, which serves more than a million European customers, but is also head of BNP Paribas Personal Investors. The latter, which consists of Cortal Consors in Europe and Geojit BNP Paribas in India and the Middle East, had net revenue from brokerage operations of 30 million in the first quarter, up 29 percent from a year earlier. Le Grand points to a very nice recovery in online trading in Europe, with net revenue up 27 percent.
The fastest-growing market, with 45 percent net revenue growth, was India, where BNP Paribas became the lead shareholder of Geojit Financial Services in 2007. Between 2007 and 2009, the Indian brokerages trades increased 52 percent, to 55.6 million, with 25 to 30 percent taking place over the Internet, says Le Grand.
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