2015 Outlook: Eero Pikat, Barchart
Eero Pikat is president at Barchart, a provider of financial technology and market data.
What were the major themes of your business in 2014?
In 2014, we saw a major shift by not only start-ups, but also established firms, from pre-created content and widgets to JSON-delivered data, either to an app or to the browser. Software developers — even financial software developers — are embracing cloud-based solutions. After the cloud experiment was proven in other industries, financial technologists finally trust solutions, overcoming preconceived misconceptions regarding the cloud’s security, stability, and speed.
At Barchart, we capitalized on this trend with our Barchart OnDemand data services and expertise instituting public- and private-cloud solutions, particularly with expertise in Amazon Web Services. We expect that 2014 was just the start of the proliferation of large, scalable, and highly-available applications — like Barchart OnDemand — and we believe that the future for trading firms will involve more resource-saving, secure and open solutions.
What are your expectations for 2015?
The recent events with Sony (particularly the way confidential communications and trade secrets were leaked) will likely cause a lot of firms to re-think their overall IT strategy vis-a-vis security.
In the end, engaging partners who focus solely on certain knowledge domains has a lot of benefits. Why should a film production company be system security experts? Why should hedge funds be experts in Big Data? Why should media companies be experts in software design? The answer is that they shouldn’t.
It’s becoming more and more apparent that a division of labor – in effect outsourcing not only software development, but infrastructure and data as well – is the prudent choice not only for small start-ups who gain a cost advantage, but large firms as well, who gain domain specific knowledge and expertise. Having isolated, well-defined, highly available and independent services provides redundancy and stability to overall systems. Over the years we’ve seen many industries move towards a decentralized production model … automotive, aerospace, and electronics are great examples of this. There is no reason why financial software and data services won’t follow this trend.