The Chicago-based CME Group is looking to expand to London, and plans to launch a new derivatives exchange next year in the United Kingdom, the firm said Monday.

The CME announced that it is in the process of applying to the UK’s Financial Services Authority (FSA) to create a London-based derivatives exchange, CME Europe Ltd. Pending regulatory approval, it will initially begin trading foreign exchange futures products and is expected to launch mid-2013.

CME Globex will be used as the electronic trading platform and CME Clearing Europe Ltd, which launched in May 2011, will provide central counterparty clearing services.

“We continue to see an increase in business coming from our diverse set of customers in Europe, with more than 20% of our volume now originating from the region,” said CME Group executive chairman and president, Terry Duffy. “Having an exchange in London that can leverage the central counterparty model of CME Clearing Europe will allow us to align ourselves even more closely with our regional customers in both listed futures and over-the-counter markets, and provide additional opportunities to our expanding non-U.S. customer base.”

“Our application to establish an exchange in Europe fits within our strategy to grow organically and is an important next step to meet the growing regional demand from our customers,” said CME Group CEO, Phupinder Gill. “Launching with a suite of FX products allows us to leverage our 40 years of experience in FX futures for customers in the region who access the futures market during the London business day, but we also plan to look at expanding into additional asset classes.”