Equities Leaders Summit Spotlight: Fixnetix
(The following is part of a content series themed around the Equities Leaders Summit, which takes place Dec. 3-5 in Miami.)
ELS Spotlight: DXC Technologies’ Fixnetix Homes in on the Private Cloud
Over its almost 15 years in operation, Fixnetix has carved out a solid reputation for providing a wide range of managed solutions for electronic trading. But by 2020, the London-based firm anticipates it will instead be synonymous with the provision of the customized private cloud technology it provides to some of the industry’s most demanding investment banks, hedge funds, proprietary trading firms and exchanges.
“People think of Fixnetix and they think about our track-record in managed trading infrastructure solutions—ultra-low latency connectivity, market data, risk management, etc. While that remains a core part of our business, most of the conversations we are having with clients today is around the highly-bespoke private cloud offering,” said Business Development Manager Guy Cirillo.
The private cloud is a computing solution made available to select users via the internet or a private internal network which can be configured virtually or physically. While providing the same benefits as the public cloud—most notably in terms of scalability and elasticity—private cloud solutions provide additional levels of control, security and customization.
It is the backing by global IT services and solutions powerhouse DXC Technology which Cirillo says is key to Fixnetix’s evolution and will help it further cement its central role servicing the capital markets sector. DXC Technology, which has a market cap of approximately $10 billion and around 130,000 global employees, was formed in 2017 after Hewlett-Packard spun off its Enterprise Service segment and subsequently merged with Computer Science Corporation (CSC), which had itself acquired Fixnetix in 2015.
“Being part of the DXC Technology group allows Fixnetix to offer an enterprise-wide solution to clients,” said Cirillo. “And as a Fortune 500 company, it obviously provides us with a strong financial foundation with a healthy balance sheet and buying power.”
As an end-to-end IT services company, DXC Technology assists its clients in undertaking digital transformations by modernizing and integrating their mainstream IT for better business outcomes. Working across a diverse array of industries—including the insurance, banking, capital markets, healthcare and automotive sectors—DXC Technology provides a wide range of managed IT services such as hosting, business process automation, security and network analytics.
In January, DXC Technology announced that it had acquired global software development leader Luxoft, which helped it further scale its offering in digital strategy, including the cloud. Also in 2019, DXC Technology appointed Mike Salvino, formerly Managing Director at private equity firm Carrick Capital Partners (CCP) and before that Group Chief Executive of Accenture Operations, as CEO. During his time at CCP, Salvino specialized in managing large-scale tech enabled services businesses, specifically business process outsourcing (BPO), security and machine learning.
Creating Unique Solutions
Cirillo says that Salvino’s appointment and the DXC backing provides Fixnetix with “a robust financial foundation” that allows it to work with clients to create bespoke, end-to-end solutions.
“A big part of our value proposition is our consultative methodology. We go in and we try to figure out where a firm’s pain points are to create a bespoke solution the leverages DXC Technology’s and Fixnetix’s multi-faceted expertise. From our ability to provide everything from hardware to software services to human resources, we’re able to tailor solutions to each client’s unique needs. We don’t take a cookie cutter approach,” Cirillo said.
He continued: “From managing the traders’ desktop to handling exchange connectivity and everything the happens to the order in between, we are able to help. It could be the desktop technology, the servers, the market data or the analytics—anything technology-related around trading is something we can deliver as a managed service.”
Filling an Outsourcing Need
The ongoing trend towards outsourcing amid significant margin shrinkage, regulatory compliance costs and technological complexity has opened myriad new opportunities for Fixnetix.
“It’s not only the buy side or sell side who are finding value in an outsourcing model. We’re doing projects for alternative trading systems, for exchanges, for vendors—the list is long,” says Cirillo.
“Even 10 years ago, the trend was for big banks and other firms to build everything in house—every algorithm, every feed handler, every gateway, etc. But now the cost-effectiveness of outsourcing is being acknowledged and the acceptance is there,” he added.
Cirillo says Fixnetix is getting an increasing number of inquiries from financial firms relating to cloud migration. Currently DXC Technology has more than 800 managed cloud clients, and as such has developed a deep skill in assisting businesses with large-scale migrations and modernization of legacy environments.
“At Fixnetix, we speak to clients about what their migration path to the cloud might be and how we might help them move from on-premise physical hardware configuration to either co-located setup or fully in the cloud. We also work with our clients to consider what their goals are over a year, two year or five-year horizon to ensure that the solution we’re developing with them is able to scale with their business. With this strategic consultative approach, even firms who previously push back for various reasons—data confidentiality, security, etc.—are becoming comfortable outsourcing to a firm like ours who can devise a bespoke public or private cloud solution in an extremely cost-effective manner.”
Produced in association with Forefront Communications.
Business has grown since March as clients want ‘anytime, anywhere’ access to a virtual trading floor.
The regulator said market participants should not become overly reliant on their cloud services providers.
Nasdaq embraces the power of the Cloud, reshaping the future of data and analytics.
Remote work and volatile markets require a flexible, resilient, and scalable platform.
Ann Neidenbach joined the exchange nearly two years ago to transform its infrastructure.