How has IPC managed to remain at the forefront of trading connectivity and communications innovation over such a long period of time?
A critical factor in our early – and continuing – success is that when considering new products, we look beyond the technology to see how it might benefit our customers’ businesses. It’s easily stated (and often claimed) but we really are a customer-first business.
From the development of our first trading tools and turrets back in the 70s to today, we remain focused on empowering our diverse and widespread user community to work smarter, not harder. As working patterns change – for example, the huge increase in demand for remote access to trading environments – we have to be able to adapt to deliver the right tools to interact, transact, and react to fast-changing global financial markets.
Maintaining service quality is front and centre of our business strategy and product development, and in identifying synergies with complementary solutions that add value to our customer-first value proposition. Our partnership with Newsquawk is a great example of collaboration with other service providers to deliver fast-to-market solutions to benefit a common target market.
Financial technology continues to evolve at a significant pace. How does IPC anticipate and accommodate new technological trends?
It’s not just a question of identifying the newest, coolest tech. It really doesn’t matter how fantastic a particular technology or application is if it doesn’t ‘fit’ with the current tech stack. Before leaping onto a new technology bandwagon, we consider how it might be integrated: “How does it work? How does it fit? How quickly could it be surpassed, technologically?”
In a fast-paced, high-tech operating environment keen to embrace technological innovation – for example, new cloud models and digital infrastructures – an increasing aspect of our role is assessing potential risks and developing risk management strategies that ensure technology solutions meet both our, and our customers’, high service standards and compliance obligations.
Our ‘API-first’ strategic direction is also a reflection of a conscious decision by business stakeholders across technology, product development and sales/marketing teams to simplify customer adoption and integration for all new services and solutions.
What do you see as the major trends in financial markets technology evolution in the coming years?
With all of the myriad ‘next best things’ in financial technology, there is a touch of “Dragon’s Den” needed to curate and separate what is real and ready from what might be a great concept, but is still a long way from being ready as a customer value proposition.
As a technology leader, continued innovation is needed to stay ahead of ever-evolving customer requirements. It’s pivotal to our continuing growth and success, whether in respect of embracing cloud connectivity and integration, or delivering institutional-grade market access and intelligence.
Looking into the IPC crystal ball, what does the trading technology landscape look like in 2073?
There is no doubt that new digital technologies will become more mainstream. Post-trade processing will likely be transformed through blockchain-like technologies that attach a raft of transaction processes to a ‘static’ immutable record (golden ticket) of a transaction, with enhanced compliance and oversight.
It also seems likely that AI will feature more largely across pre and post trade services. AI is used already to synthesise data from multiple sources; combined with real time data analysis, historical pattern recognition and algorithmic order execution it could become a very powerful force indeed.
It’s hard to predict exactly how the trading landscape might look in another 50 years, but we’re confident that financial technology with a customer focus will lead the way.