Digiterre’s Rajesh Jethwa is named in the top 30 of the 2023 CIO 100
Technology is the single greatest source of competitive advantage in the digital age, and data is a critical component.
In this article published by International Investors, Digiterre considers how investment management firms should manage data at a time of significant business and technology disruption.
In twenty years of working with investment managers, across every conceivable strategy, from event-driven to global multi-strat to insurance-linked securities (ILS), Digiterre has noticed a characteristic shared by the most successful fund managers. Those who grew bigger and faster than their peers all invested early in institutional class technology and data management in the areas of trading, valuation, risk and operations. By contrast, those who didn’t invest early, and relied for too long on manual processes and spreadsheets, typically paid the price down the line. As firms scale, and manage portfolios of increasing size and complexity, the lack of investment in technology often leads to failed investor due diligence, poor risk controls, operational failures and lost investment opportunities.
Technology – and data management in particular – is the key to unlocking operational efficiency and competitive advantage. For fund managers of all sizes, enterprise-quality software is now a major differentiator and a clear sign to their clients and other stakeholders of their institutional quality. Businesses increasingly recognise that greater data accuracy, and better data management, mean greater value. However, the cost and complexity of data management is driving many investment managers to think more strategically about their approach.
Investment executives are under tremendous pressure to increase growth opportunities, reduce costs, address competitive threats and manage regulatory challenges. Continual transformation is the new normal for most businesses, and data transformation underpins most change – yet we are seeing constant increases in, and challenges with, data silos, volume, value, fidelity and timeliness.
Data challenges often fall into three broad categories: market data, such as time-series and non-time-series data orchestration and analysis; operational data, including data ingestion, validation, enrichment, analysis and reporting platforms; and networks and relationships, for example global transactional look throughs, rebates management and pre- and post-trade analytics.
In response to these challenges, Digiterre launched DataMax, an enterprise platform for technology teams to manage and analyse big data, and support operational resilience and business growth. It can be used by investment managers to integrate, manage and analyse large and complex data sets, in the form of market, networks and relationships, or operational data, such as in trades and transactions, rapidly and in real-time. The platform is based on multiple years of technology research and development and builds on Digiterre’s award-winning work for clients in the investment management, energy trading and banking sectors.
Many investment management and trading businesses continue to operate in data silos and face challenges with the quality, volume and timeliness of their data reporting and analysis. This challenge grows by the day as the volume of data, and the number of alternative data sources available to all market participants, continues to grow exponentially. DataMax is a catalyst for digital transformation as it accelerates an organisation up the data maturity curve to the point where a substantial proportion of business processes, or even entire business divisions, can be managed using true data-led decision making. DataMax helps organisations realise that goal faster and with lower risk.
The platform takes the most complex elements of real-time data management and makes them simple to develop, deploy and operate at scale. Coupled with Digiterre’s domain knowledge in the investment management sector, DataMax empowers technology teams with the tools to improve operational and organisational effectiveness and accelerate data maturity. This in turn provides a springboard for data-driven insights and digital innovation.
DataMax can be used to manage data challenges related to the data silos and disparate storage technologies so often associated with big data initiatives; data transport under volume and time constraints; data quality and validation; data enrichment to ensure fit-for-purpose information; and robust authentication and authorisation processes.
Deployed in the cloud or on-premise, Datamax can be applied to improve numerous organisational outcomes, including; analytics platforms for market data teams and traders; regulatory reporting, for example required by MiFID II; more effective relationship mapping to maximise the performance of distribution networks; improved portfolio management through greater accuracy of trading positions and cash flow.
DataMax modules have recently been used on new and exciting projects at leading financial and investment management organisations, where delivering high-risk, high-profile and time-constrained projects is crucial to business success.
For example, working with the FX trading division of a global banking and investment management company, Digiterre is building a technology and operations platform for integrated FX reporting and analytics. This highly scalable and automated system provides a unified view of real-time requests, and client credit and regulatory status, across a highly complex, global FX franchise.
Digiterre is also partnering with one of Europe’s largest energy supply companies to build a cloud-hosted platform for asset modelling and optimisation. The system enables the client’s quant teams to run models with greater flexibility and speed, including pricing forward curves, in real-time, for energy commodities.
Also in energy and utilities, Digiterre is working with a leading independent energy and commodity group, based in Switzerland, to build a settlement platform to support invoice generation, payment approvals and integration with accounting systems.
In addition, the consultancy is developing an operating platform for position transfer, and implementing a complex integration architecture between two subsidiaries, for another Switzerland-based energy trading business.
A powerful big data and real-time platform, built to handle change, DataMax lies at the heart of Digiterre’s software and data engineering consultancy. Digiterre enables technological and organisational transformation for many of the world’s leading organisations by envisaging, designing and delivering software and data engineering solutions that users want, need and love to use. Ultimately, this ensures that Digiterre can deliver high-risk, high-profile and time-constrained technology in less time than competitors, often significantly so.
To find out more about our DataMax platform, click here.
By: Rajesh Jethwa
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