Reading yesterday’s news on the remains of Van der Moolen in the Financieele Dagblad. Turns out at least seven spin-off’s have been created from the wrecked company. One may wonder how many of the seven dwarfs will survive in 2010. Fairy tales usually have a happy ending, so maybe we could say “and they lived happily ever after”..

Caerus

Formed by the ten traders who left the firm before the the company asked for credit protection and went bankrupt. You’ll need to be pretty self-confident and have deep pockets to leave a trading house to start your own in the middle of the year. Newspaper is very enthusiast on their license of primary market maker – but this is only the license for AEX index options as far as I know.

Location: Beursplein 5

Alphabay

Don’t wish to look back at the past. Makes sense because this is the company is founded by the former managers of Van der Moolen. The newspaper lost track of the amount of traders working for Alphabay. First reporting 13 traders, later suggesting a total headcount of 15 of which 8 traders. Sounds like a serious overhead problem. Informal sources indicate this number of 8 traders is exaggerated.
Location: Singel

EXT

Stands for Europe X Trading, comparable with it’s mother Asia X Trading. Complicated story of traders based in Hong Kong, Geneva and Amsterdam. Sounds difficult to make this work as a small start up venture, but the traders behind this venture have good reputation.

Location: Beursplein 5

Aespen

Nothing new here. Well-known and reliable broker like it has always been in the past. Same brokers, same company name. Just a change in ownership. The chairman of Van der Moolen during it’s last days (Peter Zwart) is today some kind of non-executive board member at Aespen.
Location: unknown

CIT

The German / Swiss operation of Van der Moolen continues as CIT, which stands for Cologne Independent Traders. Large operation with a lot of traders (17, according to the press), which makes it by far the biggest spin-off. They published their software source code on their website.

Location: Cologne, Germany

WEBB Traders

A little odd company, as the owners didn’t suffer from the fall of VDM. They were fired by Richard den Drijver before the company went down. According to the newspaper both managers won a court case against VDM, and with the financial compensation they financed their start-up. Based in the well known former Optiver building next to central station. The only company with a serious website so far. Something with bridges.
Location: former Optiver building

London
The former VDM traders in London also must have started something. But that’s all the newspaper can tell about it.

(Newspaper story here, in Dutch)

Jack
Jack