Buy-Side Technology Awards 2016: Best Buy-Side Newcomer (Vendor or Product)—Commcise

Commcise was founded in July 2015.

Ian Robertson, Amrish Ganatra and Jonathan Davies

The majority of entrants are looking to do one of two things: disrupt a space that is already dominated by traditional vendors, or address issues that have come to the surface because of a new trend or regulation in the industry.

Commcise Software addresses both those areas with its Commcise Buy offering. The cloud-based platform was built from scratch over the last five years to manage the valuation, funding and purchasing of research from start to finish, according to Amrish Ganatra, managing director and co-founder of Commcise. And while Commcise Buy is meant to fill a gap in the market, Ganatra says, there are competing firms that offer systems to cover parts of the process. However, two factors set Commcise apart: its full integration and its independence. 

“The complexity and breadth of the process implemented by the software have typically resulted in other companies combining multiple systems, often with no links between them,” Ganatra says. “The asset management industry’s methods for procuring research have been subjected to regulatory scrutiny for years, owing to the use of their clients’ money and the potential for conflicts of interest. Much of the existing software for handling various parts of the process was developed by organizations that are themselves involved in the process.”

The London-based firm, which was founded in July 2015, has continued to evolve during its short existence. One notable enhancement was the introduction of a new module to carry out the automated valuation of research, according to Ganatra.

Clients are able to create a ruleset to recognize and value individual items of research, based on data supplied by the research provider and ratings from the client’s fund managers. 

Clients are able to create a ruleset to recognize and value individual items of research, based on data supplied by the research provider and ratings from the client’s fund managers.

Fund-level reporting has also been enhanced in preparation for the changes that will be made in the wake of the European Securities and Markets Authority’s (ESMA) Markets in Financial Instruments Directive II (Mifid II) Delegated Acts text that was published in April. 

The firm’s continual enhancements are unlikely to slow down anytime soon, according to Ganatra.

“We are working on sweeping functionality which will simplify the operations of any clients that elect to use the ‘Transactional Research Payment Account’ model proposed by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA), in response to Mifid II changes,” Ganatra says. “We are also adding corporate access management, including forward calendar tools to help asset managers identify events of interest, arrange attendance, and subsequently value events.” 

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