Profile: Anatoly Knyazev of EXANTE
Below is a profile of Anatoly Knyazev, who is the founder and the Executive Director of EXANTE. Learn more about the trader and entrepreneur’s educational background, early career, founding of his own brokerage firm, and his deep interest and expertise in cryptocurrency and blockchain technology.
Anatoly Knyazev is a graduate of mathematics and computer science. He has academic knowledge of statistics and software development, and he had always been very interested in calculations and mathematical analysis, taking a logical approach to problems he encountered.
Career prior to the financial industry – software developer
Surprisingly, Anatoly Knyazev of EXANTE did not start out as a full-time trader or investor. Instead, early in his career, he was a software developer at American multinational company Netcracker Technology Corp. The company delivers market-leading, next-gen OSS, BSS, cloud, 5G, IoT, SDN/NFV solutions to service providers. Knyazev participated in arbitrage trading while working as a software developer, and he specialised in identifying price differences between derivative products and their underlying assets. It was during his time that he became more and more interested in the financial markets, until he eventually decided to focus on developing trading programmes and infrastructure.
Career in the financial industry – trading and founding of EXANTE
It was during his early career as a software developer that he began trading on the side. He participated in the financial markets by specialising in arbitrage trading, as he had an analytical mind that enjoyed comparing the prices of derivative products and their underlying instruments, looking at incorrect prices in system components.
As time went on, he began to build connections in the trading community, and he met many likeminded individuals and new acquaintances that supported and encouraged his interest in the financial markets. It was around this time that he met Alexey Kirienko, who would become a co-founder of EXANTE just a few years later. The pair became fast friends and began experimenting with writing software for enterprises in around 2007. This was a profitable venture, and the duo saw an opportunity to expand their scope to launch their own brokerage firm with bespoke solutions.
EXANTE was launched in Malta in 2011 with the involvement of a third co-founder, Gatis Eglitis. Eglitis was a fellow trader that Knyazev and Kirienko had met in the trading community, and he had been working at Saxo Bank, a Danish investment bank, in international sales and business development. Eglitis’s background is in Finance and Business Management, and he has a master’s degree from Copenhagen Business School. The combination of the three founders’ strengths gave them the perfect awareness and expertise to launch EXANTE.
When EXANTE was first launched, it was the first Maltese broker to provide local traders direct access to global markets, which was one of the achievements that landed the broker on the map. EXANTE’s founders strove to provide a superior level of service in terms of customer satisfaction and technological innovation with its bespoke solutions. An example is the EXANTE trading platform, which Knyazev had a hand in developing, with the brokerage firm under his leadership. EXANTE was regulated by the MFSA shortly after its launch, and today, it is recognised and regulated by the SFC in Hong Kong, the FCA in the United Kingdom, and the CySEC in Cyprus, where the firm has offices.
Passion for cryptocurrency – projects and funds
Outside of his direct involvement with EXANTE, Knyazev is a passionate advocate of cryptocurrency, blockchain technology, and the integration of crypto into the modern world. He believes that there are plenty of benefits and potential in the blockchain system, and he is eager to educate the public and industry insiders on them. As an expert in crypto, he has been invited by organisers of international conferences to give talks and keynote speeches. He has also been interviewed by established newspapers such as The Independent and The Financial Times for soundbites on topics related to cryptocurrency development.
Knyazev founded one of the fastest growing cryptocurrency hedge funds in the world, Bitcoin Fund. Bitcoin Fund was the first fund to allow institutions and high-net-worth individuals to access the Bitcoin market with a licensed product, with the fund shares distributed exclusively through the EXANTE Hedge Fund Marketplace Platform when it was first launched. This was an impressive and innovative development, and Bitcoin Fund had an annual growth of over 4,800% in 2013, after a year of its launch.
Knayzev also founded XAI Fund, and he has taken on the role of Chief Technology Officer (CTO) of STASIS, a European fintech company that issues the Euro-backed stablecoin called EURS, with the goal to provide institutional grade-link between the off-chain market and the decentralised finance world. STASIS is the largest and most transparent Euro-backed stablecoin in the digital asset universe, and this is in no small part thanks to the expertise and experience of Knyazev.