Optiver is one of the oldest market making firms in the world, providing liquidity to markets across the globe to make them more efficient, transparent and stable. Headquartered in Amsterdam, the company has rapidly expanded by embracing and even inventing the latest trading technologies.

Forcade partnered with the construction company responsible for building out Optiver’s Chicago office across two floors in the Prudential Building, bringing the essence of the trading firm’s culture into the environment of its new space.


Every element of our design plan was crafted to capture the non-stop movement of Optiver’s high-energy culture. The company trades 24/7 globally, so its people are in perpetual motion. We turned this cultural sentiment into the centerpiece of the entrance corridor.

Our idea was a statement piece that represented the movement of the global markets and Optiver itself. We brought it to life with an enormous, 28 ft. undulating ceiling-to-floor scrim wall shaped with layers of beautiful, rounded loops. The materials are translucent and lit from the floor up, providing a captivating visual immersion experience that transforms throughout the day.


We also cleverly built the wall as a historical record of the company. Each vertical loop highlights a year in Optiver’s history, from its founding in 1986 to today. This further symbolizes the always-on, ever-changing nature of the work that happens in the office.


With Optiver’s rich history as one of the world’s first market making firms, we creatively chronicled the story of the company beyond the entrance corridor. This included a striking, 25 ft. wooden slat wall within the working space of the office that complemented the scrim entry wall.

Made from dimensional white oak, the 1 in. wide slats represent the trading history of Optiver. Behind the slats are custom-veneered wood panels and in between is LED soft halo rope lighting, which all work together to create the dynamic effect of a moving historical market. What isn’t noticed is the major design challenge we faced constructing this wall. Located between two structural millwork abutments, we purposefully used matching materials to make it feel like the new wall was a natural part of the existing architecture.

Another nod to the company’s rich past included a long wall featuring its historic trading jackets. While their work is done digitally today, the jacket display detailed the days of the trading pit and was designed to provide constant inspiration to current employees to keep moving the company forward.


We further emphasized the energy of today’s Optiver employees in a nearly 15 ft. long, incredibly stunning “candlestick” wall opposite a high-traffic conference room. Each candlestick is layered, with a thicker vertical line on top of a thinner one, representing the movement of modern trading. And each is a different height, placed on a different vertical position on the wall and varied in high-gloss and matte finishes, highlighting the highs and lows of trading on any given day.


In a recent rebranding effort, Optiver added a series of hieroglyphic symbols to complement their longstanding, triangular delta logo. We incorporated these branded elements into our design plan by making the symbols the transparent element on the frosted glass walls of conference rooms and offices. It was an ingenious and visually interesting solution to allow people to know if rooms were occupied while still preserving the overall privacy required of the meetings that happen within them.

The signage throughout the office was also designed to match the visual language of the new symbol-based brand. Nearly all the frosted acrylic, back-painted white signs contained simple icons sans words. It was an art-based, yet informative approach to wayfinding that helped accentuate the brand at every turn.


As a global company, Optiver has nine offices located throughout the world. To bring a little local flavor into their Chicago space, we crafted the iconic Chicago flag out of branded baseballs the company had previously handed out for an office event. We surrounded these white Optiver-branded balls with blue ones to create the flag’s stripes and used red leather representative of a baseball mitt for the stars. It was a fun, dimensional design element that brought local liveliness to the office’s lounge area.


Optiver is a high-energy, yet casual and collaborative culture. The Forcade team worked diligently to capture this unique spirit in many unconventional but highly connected ways. From the company’s bold history to its bright future, we crafted vibrantly visual moments throughout the space that wondrously weaved the story of Optiver together.


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