Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, Tradeweb Markets Inc.
Lee Olesky is co-founder, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Tradeweb Markets (Nasdaq: TW).
Olesky co-founded Tradeweb in 1996, and since then has been a central figure in the evolution of electronic trading globally. From its start trading U.S. Treasuries in the early days of the Internet, Tradeweb has grown to become a leading, global operator of electronic marketplaces for rates, credit, equities and money markets. Olesky has been at the forefront of the trend towards electronic execution and digital processing, using machine learning and a range of other advanced technologies to promote smarter trading decisions, more efficient risk transfer, and robust compliance processes for approximately 2,500 Tradeweb clients in more than 65 countries. In all, Olesky has led Tradeweb from being an $8 million early-stage startup to a $20 billion public company.
Prior to Tradeweb, Olesky served as Chief Operating Officer for the Fixed Income Americas division at Credit Suisse First Boston. He co-founded Tradeweb in 1996, assembled a consortium of investors, and served as the first chairman of the company’s board of directors. Following that, he started BrokerTec in 1999 and relocated to London where he served as the founding CEO prior to the sale to ICAP.
Olesky rejoined Tradeweb as President in 2002. He remained in London, where he drove the growth of trading in Europe and expansion into derivatives and Asia. Olesky oversaw the sale of Tradeweb in 2004 to the Thomson Corporation, later renamed Thomson Reuters, as well as securing additional investments from a group of bulge bracket investment banks in 2008. During that period, the acquisitions of LeverTrade and Hilliard Farber & Co. accelerated Tradeweb’s entry into the retail and wholesale markets, respectively.
In 2008 Olesky was named CEO of Tradeweb. He returned to New York and embarked upon an ambitious growth strategy that included new initiatives, acquisitions and hires to build out asset classes, client sectors, trading protocols, data and analytics, and regions. Tradeweb acquired BondDesk in 2013 to further expand its presence in the retail market. Derivatives trading also grew rapidly on Tradeweb’s swap execution facilities (SEFs) in the U.S. and multilateral trading facility (MTF) in Europe. In 2017, Tradeweb became the first trading platform to provide institutional clients outside of China with streamlined, electronic access to the China bond market, launching China Bond Connect and opening an office in Shanghai shortly thereafter.
Following two decades of private ownership, under Olesky’s leadership, Tradeweb became a publicly traded company on April 4th, 2019 with one of the most successful IPOs of that year. Tradeweb reached another milestone in 2021 when the company surpassed $1 billion in annual revenues for the first time.
In 2022, Olesky was elected Chairman of the Board for Tradeweb Markets and announced he will retire as CEO at the end of 2021.
A leading voice in market structure and regulatory reforms including Dodd-Frank in the US and MIFID II in Europe, Olesky has appeared in front of the U.S. Congress in favor of increased transparency and thoughtful regulation of fixed income and derivatives markets. He has received numerous awards and honors over the course of his career, including 11 appearances in Institutional Investor’s annual rankings of the industry’s top financial technology innovators. He was named CEO of the Year by Markets Media in 2019, and received the BritishAmerican Business Entrepreneurial Award in 2016.
Olesky serves on the board of trustees of Mount Sinai Health System in New York City and the board of Credit Benchmark, a provider of consensus credit risk analytics. He is a member of the International Advisory Board of BritishAmerican Business and the Leadership Council of Habitat for Humanity New York City. He was previously a member of the SEC’s Fixed Income Market Structure Advisory Committee (FIMSAC) and the CFTC’s Technology Advisory Committee (TAC).
He earned a bachelor of arts in history from Tulane University and a juris doctorate from George Washington University. Olesky has lectured at the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania, the Stanford Graduate School of Business, Judge Business School at the University of Cambridge, and Haas School of Business at the University of California, Berkeley.