Best Data Analytics Provider: FactSet

IMD/IRD Awards 2018

IMD/IRD Awards 2018 – 39
IMD/IRD Awards 2018 logo

In a financial market characterized by tight margins and low spreads, a top priority in the front office is seeking out the best chances to get ahead of competitors, and analytics tools play an important role in helping firms identify trade opportunities. The winner of the Best Data Analytics Provider award, FactSet, has continued its winning streak for a third consecutive year, exemplifying its long-standing reputation in analytics and continued investments that enhance the client experience. 

FactSet entered the portfolio management and analytics space in 1997 with the release of its Portfolio Analysis (PA) product, which offers a suite of multi-asset class analytics. Rob Robie, senior vice president and head of the analytics business unit at FactSet, says the vendor continues to enhance analytics and performance capabilities through organic innovation and recent acquisitions.

 The firm has focused on multi-asset class coverage, and continues to invest “significant resources in advanced risk analytics across asset classes, and in integrating acquisitions and third-party solutions,” Robie says. In the past year, clients have realized benefits from the integration of performance measurement and risk system provider BISAM. For clients of BISAM B-One, this has meant access to FactSet data, and for PA clients it has meant the introduction of capabilities that allow users greater flexibility in analytics workflows.

 “One thing that makes PA shine is that you can refresh historical data very quickly,” explains Robie. After integrating BISAM’s data warehousing capabilities, users can also run PA in a lockdown mode, in which analysis and data cannot be changed. “We’ve invested very heavily in the portfolio vault,” he continues, adding that the flexible workflows this tie-up represents “is what we feel will continue to drive the client user experience.” 

The judges also commented on FactSet’s acquisition strategy, praising the vendor for making “canny acquisitions always focused on serving growing customer needs” and, as a result, judges said “FactSet remains the class of the field.”

 To remain at the top, FactSet is continuing its journey to serve the entire portfolio life cycle, with solutions spanning research management, alternative data, order management and execution management. For analytics, short-term emphasis will be on expanding regulatory and benchmark capabilities while making strides with new technology. “We’re working heavily on expanding analytics application program interface (API) capabilities,” says Robie, who explains that, with APIs, clients will be able to incorporate FactSet data and analytics into workflows that extend beyond the organization’s solutions.


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