SST Awards 2018: Best Sell-Side Trading Network—BT

Michael Cooper and Roz Savage

BT takes home the award for the best sell-side trading network at the Sell-Side Technology Awards for the third time, a reflection of the company’s comfortable lead in this ever-competitive category.

BT’s Radianz service, responsible for much of the firm’s capital markets success over the years, supports the networking of financial market participants in an extranet fashion. It also offers an extensive hosting capability, as well as specific support around post-trade clearing and settlement. “It is a reflection of a continued focus and attention,” explains Michael Cooper, CTO of BT Radianz. “This is both the consequence of a lot of expertise and a lot of knowledge from a lot of people over a long period of time—it is testament to the network and to our clients as well. We are a community platform and the community that is on our network is extremely important, so this is as much thanks to them as it is to us.”    

The global market structure has changed rapidly in recent years, partly as a consequence of spiraling costs, but also as a result of increased regulation. One of the big challenges for Radianz, which offers access to more than 400 application service providers, is to ensure that it features the “right” providers. In other words, the applications and services it hosts must be current and feature the functionality firms are looking for in order to address their day-to-day capital markets needs. Another challenge is security. At the network hosting and messaging level, Radianz is architected with a high level of security, according to Cooper. “Radianz makes the grade in terms of security, and consistently applies that same standard wherever it operates,” he says. 

Looking ahead, BT will be adding additional datacenters to support its network and will be looking at the way in which encryption is made available over its network. “We have an encryption service today and as encryption becomes a more important service, we will be looking at things like that,” Cooper continues. “We are also looking at how our infrastructure supports new technologies being adopted by the financial markets. There are a few fairly obvious ones—distributed ledger and blockchain will be one that is a focus, as is data generally. And clearly, the financial markets are really starting to adopt public clouds. So we are looking at how we can extend Radianz into public clouds like Amazon Web Services and Google Cloud Platform,” he says. 

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