OptionsHouse and tradeMONSTER to Combine to Form Leading Online Brokerage Firm -- Uniquely positioned to enable active traders and investors to gain a competitive edge in the market with innovative tools and fast, reliable execution, seamlessly delivered across desktop and mobile devices. --

CHICAGO, May 27, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- Two innovative, Chicago-based online brokerage firms -- OptionsHouse LLC, a subsidiary of PEAK6 Investments, L.P., and tradeMONSTER, a subsidiary of tradeMONSTER Group, Inc. -- today announced definitive agreements to combine under a new standalone company, creating a market leading brokerage for active traders and investors. The combination of OptionsHouse and tradeMONSTER will bring together two dynamic companies that offer customers fast, reliable execution, ease of use, and superior value delivered seamlessly across desktop and mobile devices.

Under the terms of the agreements, global growth investor General Atlantic ("GA") will acquire OptionsHouse from PEAK6 and separately will acquire a majority interest in tradeMONSTER from its shareholders. The transactions are expected to close in the third quarter, pending regulatory approvals and customary closing conditions.  GA will own a majority stake in the new combined company.

"The online brokerage industry is highly fragmented. This transaction represents a tremendous opportunity to bring together two best-of-breed, online brokerages and create an organization that, as a market leading player, will challenge the status quo in the online brokerage industry," said Dirk Mueller-Ingrand, CEO of tradeMONSTER. "Our goal is to continually improve our customers' trading experience as one of the most dynamic and innovative companies in the industry."

George Ruhana, CEO of OptionsHouse said, "By joining forces, customers will get the best of both companies and continue to benefit from the products and features that enable them to gain a competitive edge.  A focus on providing superior value at competitive prices will remain a hallmark of the new company."

"As growth investors with decades of experience investing in the financial services sector, especially in those companies where technology is a key differentiator, GA sees the creation of this new online brokerage leader as an exciting and unique opportunity to be part of the next phase of innovation in the online brokerage industry," said Rene Kern, managing director of General Atlantic. "Advanced trading tools once available only to professional investors are becoming accessible to a wider universe of retail investors and market demand for sophisticated, yet easy-to-use analytics is expanding.  We believe the combined company will be uniquely positioned to meet this growing demand."

The new company will be headquartered in Chicago, where both entities are based, and is expected to substantially benefit from the depth and breadth of experienced and talented people at each company.

Jefferies LLC acted as financial advisor to General Atlantic.  Other advisors for the transactions include the following, for General Atlantic: Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison LLP, Bracewell & Giuliani, Oliver Wyman and Green Peak Partners; for OptionsHouse: Sidley Austin LLP; for tradeMONSTER: Kelley Drye & Warren LLP.

About OptionsHouse
OptionsHouse (www.optionshouse.com) was founded in 2005 by PEAK6 Investments, L.P.  PEAK6 is distinguished as a pioneer of trading technology, having been one of the first firms to apply proprietary tools to more efficiently manage risk in the options market.  PEAK6 created OptionsHouse with the simple mission of providing retail traders with their proprietary risk management technology, low commissions, and reliable execution.  Headquartered in Chicago, Illinois, in the historic Board of Trade Building, OptionsHouse provides active traders with an award-winning platform to trade stock, options and other financial products. Within the online brokerage industry, OptionsHouse has grown rapidly through a focus on low prices, speed of platform and execution, and trading technology that provides greater control over the market.  OptionsHouse consistently earns high rankings from Barron's, a leading industry reviewer, in their prestigious annual review of online brokers. 

About tradeMONSTER
tradeMONSTER (www.tradeMONSTER.com), rated by Barron's as "Best for Options Traders" and #1 for Mobile, Research Amenities, Customer Service & Education, and Usability, is making professional-grade tools accessible to all online traders, regardless of experience level. tradeMONSTER was the first online broker to deploy a streaming desktop-like trading experience in a web browser, with a dynamic and customizable interface integrating advanced analytic tools, investor education, transparent commissions and an extremely knowledgeable and dedicated customer service team. Additionally, tradeMONSTER offers the most robust mobile experience available on all major mobile platforms and devices through tradeMONSTER Mobile. With its innovation focus on combining state-of-the-art analysis with an intuitive user experience, tradeMONSTER's technology team has been granted several patents with numerous patents pending for its technology and unique investment tools embedded on the tradeMONSTER platform. All securities and investments are offered through tradeMONSTER. Member FINRA/SIPC/NFA.

About General Atlantic
General Atlantic is a leading global growth equity firm providing capital and strategic support for growth companies. GA combines a collaborative global approach, sector specific expertise, long-term investment horizon and a deep understanding of growth drivers to partner with great management and build exceptional businesses worldwide. Established in 1980, GA has more than 200 employees based in New York, Greenwich, Palo Alto, Sao Paulo, London, Munich, Amsterdam, Beijing, Hong Kong, Mumbai and Singapore. For further information and a listing of GA's public and private portfolio companies see www.generalatlantic.com.

Media Contacts:

Kekst and Company
212-521-4800

For OptionsHouse and tradeMONSTER
Andrea Calise/Jeremy Fielding
Kekst and Company
Phone: 212-521-4845/4858
Email: Andrea-Calise@kekst.com and Jeremy-Fielding@kekst.com

For General Atlantic
Adam Weiner/Peter Hill
Kekst and Company
Phone: 212-521-4823/4859
Email: Adam-Weiner@kekst.com and Peter-Hill@kekst.com

SOURCE OptionsHouse, tradeMONSTER, General Atlantic



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