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Foreword by Compaq Computer Corporation

Date 25/06/2002

Frederick L. Pennino
Director, Global Finance Industry Solutions Marketing
Global Solutions Group
Compaq Computer Corporation

Compaq Computer Corporation is pleased to be the lead sponsor for the 2002 edition of the Handbook of World Stock, Derivative and Commodity Exchanges. For more than a decade, this Handbook has provided a unique service to the Global Exchange community and has helped to chronicle the dramatic changes in the world's markets. Today we are experiencing an evolution of exchanges, brokerages, clearing organizations, and financial services organizations that is in many respects unprecedented. We see the advent of a dramatic new business model that reflects a more sophisticated and more demanding investor. There are scores of new entrants in the market and regional and global exchange alliances and mergers, all of which are irrevocably changing the face of the industry.

These changes are bringing new opportunities as well as new challenges to the world's markets and their participants. For a long time the market was focused on the need to cope with soaring volumes in the face of lower margins. Today it is apparent that the challenge is even greater than anticipated. A new age is upon us. It is an age of uncertainty where firms must prepare for eventualities that might not be predictable. It is an age of eBusiness that is rapidly being driven to the real time enterprise due to mandates such as T+1, Real Time Gross Settlement, and increased focus on managing risk. The business model has become customer-centric with a requirement to 'know your customers' and provide a better service on a more individualized basis.

The industry is not only responding to the challenges, but has been proactive in redefining itself and anticipating new challenges. We see the shape of the industry undergoing dramatic change through the consolidation of markets to single exchange entities, and the closer alignment of exchange and clearing entities. Rationalization and globalization have become accepted facts with the ability to harmonize disparate cultures, environments and operations becoming commonplace. Business continuity has taken on a new and radical dimension, in large part in recognition of the realities of the age we are in, but also in recognition of the importance of a secure and credible market in a global economy. Finally, the industry is becoming not only sensitive to the costs and return on investment in the use of technology, but also focused on the opportunities to generate revenues and competitive business structures.

COMPAQ with its solutions partners has long been a leading provider of products, solutions and services to the Global Exchange industry. Our focus on this industry, which features subject matter expertise, our broad range of highly scalable and highly reliable platforms, our partnerships with best-in-class solutions providers and our global finance-specific professional services organizations, differentiates us from other vendors. We are proud of our contribution to this industry, with the relationships we have established and with the opportunity to continue to provide world-class solutions to the world's exchanges. The 2002 Handbook of World Stock, Derivative and Commodity Exchanges is just one way of continuing to contribute to the industry's future.