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  • The Bond Market Association Selects TradeWeb As Strategic Alliance Contractor To Assist With Voluntary Protocols Initiative Jordan Jordan Will Serve As Initiative Consultant

    NEW YORK, (May 4, 2001) -- The Bond Market Association's Online Bond Steering Committee has selected TradeWeb, LLC as its strategic alliance contractor to assist in developing an industry-wide protocol to standardize electronic transactions for fixed-income securities.

    TradeWeb is a leading developer and operator of online fixed-income trading networks that enable institutional investors around the world to trade U.S. Treasuries, U.S. agencies, Euro-sovereign debt, mortgage-backed securities and commercial paper with leading bond dealers.

    "TradeWeb is honored to have been selected by The Bond Market Association to spearhead this crucial initiative," said Jim Toffey, president and chief executive officer of TradeWeb. "As one of the pioneers of online fixed-income trading, we have long been convinced of the significant merits of e-commerce solutions for our industry, and have demonstrated them in practice."

    Joseph Sack, Association senior vice president, explained that in order to permit the numerous electronic platforms to connect and communicate in a seamless way, they all have to speak the same language. "If telephone companies built incompatible systems, people would only be able to connect to those served by the same company," he explained. The Association also selected Jordan andamp; Jordan, another RFP respondent, to serve as a consultant to the Voluntary Protocols Initiative. Jordan andamp; Jordan, a New York-based management consulting firm, will oversee the scheduling of the Initiative, measure its progress, communicate results and perform research with bond market participants to verify business requirements associated with the Protocols Initiative.

    "In our role as project manager, we look forward to the opportunity to be part of the Association's solution to achieving standard protocols on behalf of the bond industry," noted Tom Jordan, president of Jordan andamp; Jordan.

    By developing a common protocol, noted Mr. Sack, the Association will make the specifications available to all platforms to promote expansion of electronic commerce in the bond markets.

    He reported that TradeWeb was selected because it was able to illustrate extensive experience in operating an online bond trading platform that communicates on a real-time basis with multiple users under a standard set of rules. This was a key criterion in the selection process, which was outlined in the Initiative's recent Request For Proposals (RFP).

    FIX Protocol Limited (FPL) and The Asset Managers Forum ("AMF") provided input to the Association concerning the RFP process. According to Dexter Senft, a managing director at Lehman Brothers Inc. who is chairing The Online Bond Protocols Subcommittee, the Association supports the further development of the work to date of the Fixed Income Working Group (FIWG) whose efforts relating to the development of protocols have been very successful. He also said that the Association is committed to coordinating its Voluntary Protocols Initiative with both FPL and the AMF and appreciates their involvement and support.

    The RFP for the Voluntary Protocols Initiative was issued March 22 to dealers, vendors and customers to develop a shared standard that would be placed in the public domain.

    The Association, at the suggestion of its Online Bond Committee, pursued a two-fold protocols objective that would 1) assure the rapid development of an industry-wide protocol for all essential transaction functions and 2) make the protocol development process open to all interested dealers and customers before recommending a protocol in final form.

    The RFP was based on the following guiding principles:

    • Any determination by the Association to develop industry-wide protocols should entail deploying technology professionals on a full-time basis in order to support the initiative;
    • Protocols development must be conducted on the basis of marketplace trading activity. It is proposed that protocols specifications developed by the Association would be in the public domain; and,
    • The work of developing protocols should be open to all market participants.

    "An active industry-wide Protocols Initiative, by the very nature of its mission, will create a variety of new responsibilities and opportunities for technology professionals and possibly help to create the infrastructure that these professionals need to develop connectivity innovations for their firms' existing and prospective customers," noted Mr. Sack, in describing one of the key benefits of an Association-sponsored Protocols Initiative.

    Keeping abreast of the diversity of e-commerce ideas, as they pertain to straight-through-processing (STP) and T + 1 planning, will also be a beneficial by-product of the Association's leadership role in the protocols area, Mr. Sack said.

    As detailed in the RFP, respondents to the Initiative described in a detailed written submission the work and tasks that they would perform on behalf of the Association, as well as in concert with other groups, to accomplish the development of industry-wide protocols.

    On March 29, the Association held a Respondents' Conference for those interested in serving as the Contractor for the Initiative. The deadline for submission of responses to the RFP was April 18, 2001.

    As indicated in the RFP, the Association intends to issue draft protocols by the fall.

    About Jordan and Jordan

    Jordan and Jordan, with offices in Chicago and London, is a professional services firm offering management consulting, project management and management of the Financial Information Forum (FIF) to the financial services industry. Jordan andamp; Jordan's management consulting and project management groups assist financial services executives in evaluating business alternatives, developing practical strategies, selecting suitable technology solutions and managing implementation. Jordan andamp; Jordan also has offices in Chicago and London. For more information, see www.jandj.com.

    About TradeWeb

    TradeWeb is a leader in online fixed-income markets with nearly one million trades executed with total volume of more than $4 trillion since its inception in 1998. TradeWeb's multi-dealer model links 13 of the world's leading dealers of fixed-income securities, with nearly 700 buy-side institutions in North America and Europe. The company's technological platform is utilized to enable clients to trade U.S. Treasury and Agency securities, TBA mortgage pass-through securities, Euro Sovereigns and commercial paper. For more information on TradeWeb, please visit the company's website at www.tradeweb.com.

    About The Bond Market Association

    The Bond Market Association represents securities firms and banks that underwrite, trade and sell debt securities both domestically and internationally. For more information on the Association and its Online Bond Protocols Subcommittee, please visit www.bondmarkets.com.

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