Sell-Side Technology Awards 2019: Best Infrastructure Provider to the Sell Side—IPC Systems

Jersey City-based IPC Systems wins yet another trading communications-related award this year, thanks to its flagship offering, Unigy.

Louis Rudd, Pierre Dupuch and Paul Langston.

This year’s winner of the best infrastructure provider to the sell side is Jersey City-based IPC Systems, thanks to its flagship trading communications platform, Unigy, initially introduced in 2011. Since then, IPC has consistently grown the functionality and coverage of the platform. One of its stand-out features is allowing traders to communicate with multiple counterparties simultaneously. “We have up to 34 simultaneous active calls that can be presented to a trader at any one point in time,” explains Bruce Bolcer, director of product management at IPC

A key challenge with designing such platforms for traders is the speed of communication with counterparties. “The turret itself allows you to be at the dedicated line that trading companies connect to for their counterparties,” Bolcer says. “Our turret system provides them with a user interface to access those lines quickly. So, rather than making a phone call to a counterparty, I can press a button on my turret and I am instantly connected to them. I can transact business with them and be done. So the set-up time and the communication to execute the trade can be done very quickly.”  

A key technology that IPC has introduced in recent years is the transition to its IQ/Max Touch turret, allowing traders to customize their applications so that they appear similar to how they would on a tablet. “Everything prior to that was around fixing buttons to certain places,” Bolcer explains. “Now, with a touchscreen-based device, users can customize the screens they are working with on their devices and pick from a set of roughly five different telephony applications and how they view them on their touch-base endpoints,” he says.   

Another area where IPC is making a significant investment is in the tools required to operate managed systems. These are add-on services it delivers on top of its standard maintenance arrangements. One of the firm’s more interesting developments is the alliance it established with GreenKey Technologies in February 2018, an initiative that won the best partnership or alliance category at the 2018 American Financial Technology Awards. “Our partnership with GreenKey addresses compliance-related applications and the desire to convert all the audio that occurs on our end-points into data,” Bolcer explains. “We use back-end data analytics like they use in their digital trading systems on their PCs to do analytics, surveillance and other compliance applications as if it was any other type of data, like an instant messaging screen or an electronic trading system.” 

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