Best Analytics Provider: FactSet

IRD/IMD Awards 2017

IMD/IRM Awards 2017 Best Analytics Provider
Max Bowie; Tom Davis, vice-president, product manager, fixed income research; Ted Granberg, vice-president, director, global pricing data; and Ali van Nes, senior vice-president, senior director, regulatory solutions, FactSet

As appetite for information grows, ensuring users can extract value from data by integrating analytic applications becomes increasingly challenging. Analytics tools continue to evolve, however—helping clients navigate the data maze. One vendor that has consistently impressed with its analytics suite is FactSet, which has been named this year’s Best Analytics Provider.

FactSet, which won this award last year and also came out on top in this year’s Best Market Data Provider category, entered the portfolio management and analytics space in 1997. Over its 20 years in the business, the vendor has continuously expanded its offering, earning recognition for its broad portfolio analytics suite—which is now a multi-asset class, global solution with a flexible, multi-tile interface displaying reports and charts.

Thanks to its long history in the analytics space, FactSet has become known for “quality, reliability and accuracy”, according to judges, who also praised the vendor for “establishing itself as an industry leader”. FactSet enhances its products through innovation and acquisitions, providing richer data to users and improving its functionality—allowing them to make sense of it faster. “The overall aim of FactSet’s product improvements is to ensure data is placed in context and delivered when the user needs it, with value-adding analytics layered on top,” says Bill McCoy, senior vice president, analytics strategy at FactSet.

The vendor’s latest acquisition was announced in March, when it acquired performance measurement and risk system provider BISAM. McCoy says the combination of BISAM’s performance measurement tools and FactSet’s portfolio analytics will offer clients a structured workflow, coupled with “on-the-fly analysis”. BISAM’s Cognity product—originally owned by FinAnalytica—will enhance FactSet’s risk analysis for derivatives and quantitative portfolio construction.

Making further product-enhancing strides, FactSet has also developed smart caching, in which the system can anticipate user needs to pre-calculate and deliver their most frequently accessed reports. There is also a new decision-based attribution model, which decomposes the portfolio’s return into purchasing, selling and positioning decisions to quantify a manager’s skill.

“We are building out the breadth and depth of our analytics in response to client demand in a challenging investment environment. By building off of our strong culture of innovation, client service, successful partnerships with third parties and tightly integrated acquisitions, we want to give clients access to the best-in-breed solutions across the portfolio analytical life cycle,” says McCoy.

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