LONDON—APX Europe (Automated Power Exchange), a full service Internet-based electricity exchange, and the Norwegian-based SKM (Skandinavisk Kraftmegling AS), the largest electricity broker in Europe, have announced an alliance that, according to the two companies, will impact the expanding market for electricity trading in Europe. The two companies will work together to develop additional functionality for the electronic trading of electricity.

Initially, APX and SKM will focus on defining and developing on-line services for the marketplace. This will bring significant benefits to both brokers and other clients by making trading more efficient, by allowing brokers to interface with on-line power exchanges and by streamlining back office settlement procedures.

APX and SKM will also be exploring the creation of integrated on-line clearing services for established markets in northern Europe, which will help reduce the cost of credit in energy trading, improve market liquidity and generate greater market opportunities for both buyers and sellers.

Commenting on the announcement, Per Hjorth, APX senior vice president for exchange services, said “APX and SKM share a similar vision, namely to provide buyers and sellers with a full range of trading services at all points in the transaction process.”

Ragnar Ottosen, SKM president and chief executive, added “By combining the market knowledge and skills of both companies, we can develop competitive solutions to meet the growing needs of our clients for an efficient trading platform across Europe.”

Commenting on APX’s objective to launch a full service Internet-based power exchange in the UK, Hjorth said “We are currently working through FSA approval procedures and we expect to be up and running when the new UK wholesale electricity trading arrangements (NETA) come into operation before the end of this year. Our product development program is well-advanced, and in the coming months we will be running intensive training simulations involving a wide range of market participants.”