Waters Rankings 2019: Best Low-Latency Data Feed Provider: Refinitiv

Waters Rankings 2019

Even in a sea of change, it’s Refinitiv taking home the best low-latency data feed provider award. The tech giant also won the category in 2018 and 2017 under the Thomson Reuters banner.

For Refinitiv, delivering low-latency data is not just about being fast, but about how much you can do fast—especially as flexibility and scale become more important considerations than raw speed alone.

And for the vendor—the former Thomson Reuters Financial & Risk business, which was spun out of its parent last year in a buyout led by Blackstone Group—2018 was as much about investing in what its Elektron Real Time low-latency infrastructure could carry as it was about carrying that data quickly.

For example, Refinitiv increased the number of instruments supported on the Elektron Data Platform from 60 million in 2017 to more than 84 million in 2018, while updates-per-second over the feed increased from 5.5 million to 7.3 million over the same period.

“You’re only as good as the quality of data you can provide: Do you have what the client needs, and is it timely and current?” says Marion Leslie, managing director of enterprise at Refinitiv. “This is a high-speed feed, the backbone of financial institutions, and the driver of revenue in the front office … so we understand this is mission-critical for the customer base we serve.”

But looking ahead, the vendor’s latency play is changing in response to the evolution of that customer base. And while Elektron can distribute data worldwide at sub-microsecond speeds, Refinitiv is now seeing more demand for cloud-based data delivery options from new classes of consumers, such as chief data officers, data scientists, risk professionals, and increasingly, buy-side firms with a growing appetite for data, which are prepared to stomach “good-enough” millisecond-level latency, compared to being the domain of CTOs, traders, and market data professionals, only a few years ago.

[This story was written before it was announced that the London Stock Exchange Group is in talks to buy Refinitiv for $27 billion.

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