The consistent high quality of Eze Software Group’s entries across four categories in this year’s Buy-Side Technology Awards earned the Boston-based buy-side specialist the top prize: the best overall buy-side technology provider for 2014. James Rundle spoke to CEO Pete Sinisgalli about the firm’s plans for the future, and what the firm’s clients are demanding.
Given Eze’s win in the top category of this year’s awards, what are the key enhancements you’ve made to your products this year that have kept you on top?
Pete Sinisgalli, Eze Software Group: We’ve made significant investments in our product suite this year thanks to increasing research and development spending by more than 25 percent. One key focus for us has been enhancing cross-product integration. When we created Eze Software, we brought together three best-of-breed products, so we’re in a unique position to build out tighter, more intuitive workflows across the entire investment cycle. To highlight just one example, the integration between Eze OMS and RealTick EMS is now more seamless than ever. We’ve embedded RealTick components in Eze OMS, so that users can now view advanced RealTick analytics alongside key OMS data. We’ve also introduced Eze OMS compliance features into RealTick EMS to support broker-level compliance with the complete integration, including support for pre-trade compliance, due out in our next release.
Where do you think your clients are facing challenges at the moment, and what are they commonly asking you to address?
Sinisgalli: Our clients continue to grapple with evolving regulatory requirements and heightened scrutiny from both investors and regulators. Clients are commonly asking us to help them automate as much of this process as possible, and are looking to us to help them prevent issues before they happen and make it easier for them to manage requirements in various jurisdictions across the globe. We just concluded our 2014 EzeSoft Client Conference in October. I personally had the opportunity to talk to over 100 clients and listen in on the session discussions. I heard a lot about compliance and regulatory reporting, data management, and multi-asset class investing and trading, among other topics. These are areas we’ve been investing in for years, and we’re optimistic we can partner with our clients to tackle these challenges now and in the future.
The backdrop of regulation is a pressing concern for buy-side firms, but what else do you think buy-side firms should keep an eye on for 2015?
Sinisgalli: In today’s environment, buy-side firms need to be wary of systems that are unable to support their growth plans. Whether investment managers are investing in new asset classes, launching new products, or pursuing new customer segments, their technology platform needs the functionality and flexibility to support that growth. We’ve made the investments in our products and our service model to ensure we can support our clients’ growth strategies. Our clients view us as a key partner as they go about operationalizing these strategies.
Secondly, the buy side needs to maintain a focus on efficient and cost-effective operations. I’m hearing a lot from clients about the combination of margin pressure and increasing costs, such as compliance and regulatory-oriented costs. EzeSoft offers our clients efficient workflows and cost-effective deployment options, including the ability to have Eze OMS, for example, hosted by a third-party provider. We are building out a cloud platform that will take this concept to the next level. We also have a service model that clients can rely on to complement their in-house resources.
What can we expect from Eze Software Group over the next 12 months?
Sinisgalli: We will continue to enhance our OMS, EMS, and portfolio management system product lines to ensure our clients have industry-leading investment technology. At the same time we will execute our cloud strategy by building cloud-based versions of our capabilities in an iterative, phased manner. This is a multi-year effort, but we’ll continue to release new capabilities in the coming 12 months. We also recognize our customer service is a key differentiator for us, and we’re making investments in the coming year to ensure we continue to deliver the best customer service in the business. Finally, we intend to grow by building on geographic momentum in Europe and Asia-Pacific, and segment momentum, especially among traditional asset managers.
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