In recent years, Refco earned itself a reputation for its aggressive growth by acquisition strategy and its occasional brushes with regulators. FO Week's Annalie Grainger has scoured the archives to find the notable incidents in the recent history of the benighted brokerage.
Gerard Sillam, described in his press statement as a "French
business contributor", alleged that Refco had "filed with SEC
[Securities and Exchange Commission] an IPO project without
mentioning a major pending claim of $1.02bn filed in the New
York State Supreme Court and several civil and criminal
proceedings in Paris, with claims of approximately
Refco bought equity derivatives broker Greenwich as well as
Cargill Investor Services (CIS), the latter for an upfront
payment of $208m. Under terms of the CIS agreement, Refco were
to pay between $67m and $192m extra, dependent upon the future
performance of the acquired firm.
In March, Refco paid £14.8m for ISV EasyScreen. The two
firms had entered into a £2m joint venture in 2001, which
gave the brokerage a custom-built mechanism for internalising
Two Refco Hong Kong futures brokers were penalised by Hong Kong
Securities and Futures Commission (SFC) for breaching
regulations dealing with cold calling. The senior broker was
ordered to pay HK$195,000 ($25,000) to SFC. Private equity firm
Thomas H Lee took a 57% stake in Refco for $507m, with a view
to listing the firm on the stock market.
Refco Global Holdings bought Seoul-based HanMag Futures for
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