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Debtdomain’s founder leaves firm for new venture

Sean Tai has left Debtdomain, the company he founded, to start a new venture, according to several sources with knowledge of the situation. Debtdomain is still willing to take on the challenge posed by new digital platforms in the Schuldschein market, according to Tai’s replacement as global head of business development.

Sandrine Markham, who joined Debtdomain in 2009, is that replacement.

Tai founded Debtdomain in 2000 in Singapore. Ipreo, the software firm for bond bookbuilding, bought it in February 2013, and in the summer of 2018 Ipreo was in turn acquired by IHS Markit for $1.86bn. Debtdomain now sits in IHS Markit’s loan platforms business, which Tai was the managing director of, in addition to his role as global head of Debtdomain's business development.

Tai told GlobalCapital at the end of March that Debtdomain will improve its technology, in part to compete with new digital platforms that have emerged in the Schuldschein market.

"This includes improving fee tracking, soft orders and allocations. And we can invest in development at a scale that newer [technology] firms could not match," he said.

Speaking after Tai's departure, Markham said of the Schuldschein market: “We’re supportive of the Schuldschein market and the innovation taking place in it. We're constantly investing in and enhancing Debtdomain to better address any form of private placement, including Schuldschein, and the diverse range of facilities in the loan market, based on direct feedback from our customers in Germany, elsewhere in Europe and beyond.  For example, we’re working on automating amendments and waivers to meet growing demand in the European market.”

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