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Monday, 26 July 2021

Online trader Thndr to add funds, eyes margin trading

Zero-commission trading app Thndr is looking to add new investment funds to its platform before the end of the year after having recently obtained a license to allow investors to subscribe to funds through its platform, co-founder Ahmad Hammouda told us. The app is looking to roll out a number of “thematic funds” before the year is out, Hammouda said. A fund that invests in sharia-compliant equities could also be added at a later stage amid increasing interest in compliant instruments, he added.

Thndr is also angling for a license to allow its clients to trade on margin, as well as a license to act as a financial custodian, Hammouda said.

Azimut could help Thndr find a sharia-compliant fund: Azimut Asset Management, which has a partnership to make its funds available on Thndr, has a long-term plan to set up Egypt’s first equity fund for companies that comply with Islamic law, Azimut Managing Director Ahmed Abou El Saad told us. This would, however, depend on whether Egypt sees more sharia-compliant financial instruments taken to market in the coming period, he added.

What do you mean by “adding” funds on Thndr? The license Thndr recently obtained made it possible for investors using its app to snap up investment fund certificates during subscription rounds — and to subsequently buy and sell listed certificates digitally. The brokerage has already made certificates in equity fund ​AZ-Opp and money-market fund AZ-Savings, both of which are run by Azimut, available through the platform.

The “goal is to build an investment supermarket,” Hammouda said. Thndr will continue to be on the lookout for partnerships with hand-picked asset managers to make certificates in funds run by those asset managers available through the trading app, he noted. Thndr recently brought on board former EFG Hermes vice-president for global markets support Hatem Mohab to lead this area.

Growth outside of Egypt? The platform is currently focussed on expanding in Egypt and has no plans to tap foreign markets soon, he noted.

BACKGROUND: Thndr landed last year Egypt’s first new brokerage license since 2008. The company’s investors include Y-Combinator, 4DX Ventures, Endure Capital, the Raba Partnership, and MSA Capital.

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