Sowing the seed Featured

8:00pm EDT June 25, 2010
Finalist
Financial Services

Matthew Hulsizer’s recipe for success is simple, consisting of just two ingredients: relentless innovation and flawless execution. As the co-founder and CEO of PEAK6 Investments LP, he’s learned you can’t have one without the other.

Hulsizer was formerly a risk manager at Swiss Bank, but he knew there had to be a better way to do business. When he founded his financial services firm in 1997, he stepped out on a limb. PEAK6 became the first equity options firm to go fully “off-floor”; then Hulsizer decided to focus on less-liquid securities, which the larger players had avoided.

Those chances paid off as the company grew from one trade, two employees and a desk on his first day to almost 20 wholly owned companies — and investments in numerous others — in five offices across the U.S. that executed more than 100 million options contracts in 2009.

Hulsizer enjoys creating new businesses, but he knows the rest of his team needs to be just as passionate about their success. In 2006, he formed PEAK6 Advisors to make investing prowess available to outside investors. There’s also OptionsHouse, a retail online brokerage with the technology, tools and bloodline of PEAK6, that brings professional trading data and tools to retail customers.

PEAK6 also funded and developed WeSeed, a social network that empowers and educates stock market newcomers.

While he’s happy with the growth and profitability of PEAK6 — which has never had a losing quarter — Hulsizer has to go back to his two-ingredient recipe and look at the other half. And fortunately, he’s just as proud that through the success, PEAK6 has maintained a clean regulatory history.

How to reach: PEAK6 Investments LP, (312) 362-2401 or www.peak6.com