Witad Awards 2019 Write-Ups: Technology Leader of the Year (Vendor)—Natasha Shamis, Liquidnet

Natasha Shamis, global head of product at Liquidnet, wins the technology leader of the year (vendor) category in the 2019 Witad Awards.

Witad 2019 Technology leader of the year (vendor): Natasha Shamis, Liquidnet
Natasha Shamis receives her award from the BBC's Kate Silverton at this year's Witad Awards held in London on March 8.

In 2002, Natasha Shamis was one of only seven women out of a total of 100 students to study computer science at Columbia University. “It was very lonely up on that stage during graduation,” she recalls. Today, this problem still remains as women are vastly outnumbered by men in technology and data roles across the capital markets. Despite the odds, Shamis’ ability to stand out and excel led to her appointment as global head of product at Liquidnet, helping to earn her the title of technology leader of the year (vendor) in this year’s Women in Technology & Data Awards held in London on March 8.

When Shamis initially landed the role in 2014, she had one person reporting to her. Today, she has built a global team of 30 stretching across product managers, user experience (UX) designers and data analysts. Over time, she has appointed dedicated heads of product in Asia and Europe to oversee operations across the different jurisdictions and increase client engagement in the regions.

Under her leadership, the team has focused on designing customer-centric technologies developed with a data-driven approach. As part of this vision, Shamis acquired and centralized the UX team, and implemented processes for measuring success of products and incorporating data into Liquidnet’s technologies. She has led the charge in producing data-driven products and among her long list of achievements at the firm is her convincing of Seth Merrin, CEO of Liquidnet, to establish a dedicated data unit within the wider product development team. “The CEO supported that the focus had to be more on data science, which is where I saw the industry going,” Shamis explains. “We had to be analyzing the way people use our products today in order to figure out how we build them tomorrow.”

Since 2014, Shamis has pushed boundaries and exceeded expectations. In the first six months on the job she signed 100 new clients to Liquidnet’s trading platform, and continues to lead the team in building out its capabilities, including its Virtual High Touch Suite and its most recent addition, Liquidnet Discovery. Following its acquisition of OTAS Technologies in May 2017, Shamis and the product team integrated OTAS’ data analytics into Liquidnet Discovery, from which valuable insights can be extracted using artificial intelligence. 

In the years to come, Shamis will continue to shape Liquidnet’s technology vision by producing customized products, investing in innovative technologies such as artificial intelligence, executing strong leadership, and encouraging more women to enter the industry through incentives such as Liquidnet’s Camp Codea summer program. 

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