Waters Rankings 2015: Best Portfolio Management System Provider ─ Bloomberg

Bloomberg won four categories in this year's Rankings

Earl Monroe and Scott Lewis

Bloomberg AIM, the catch-all moniker for a suite of front-, middle-, and now back-office applications, also delivered wins for Bloomberg in this category in last year's Waters Rankings, as well as winning the best OMS category in last year's Buy-Side Technology Awards, traditionally the most closely contested of all 28 individual categories on offer.

This year's win marks Bloomberg's hat trick of wins in this category, underlining its dominance in a space that is as lucrative for third-party technology vendors as it is fiercely competitive. What has become clear over the years is that if, as a third-party technology provider, you have aspirations of competing with Bloomberg in the front office, you had better come well prepared and armed to the teeth.

Bloomberg AIM, known in a previous life as Bloomberg POMS (portfolio order management system) is, to all intents and purposes, the industry's best example of the all-singing, all-dancing front-office platform, which, when integrated with the firm's Bloomberg Professional service, makes for a compelling one-stop front-office trading platform for traditional asset managers, hedge funds and prop trading desks.

From a front-office perspective, if there is a business process that needs to be managed, you can be sure that Bloomberg AIM has it covered. As is the case with large numbers of buy-side firms, an order management system lies at the heart of Bloomberg AIM, responsible for establishing the New York-headquartered firm's buy-side footprint the best part of two decades ago, while arranged around it are a suite of buy-side-specific applications that cover everything from portfolio and risk management to execution management, compliance, post-trade matching, settlement and reconciliation, portfolio accounting and performance measurement.

Sure, there are several alternative providers serving the front office, each with their own take on what buy-side firms most need in a portfolio management system, with sufficient market share to warrant their continued operation, but as Waters readers have shown emphatically for the past three years, none is as effective, as popular or as pervasive as Bloomberg AIM.

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