Fidessa group recently held its second annual buy-side client conference which brought together 70 senior executives from global asset management firms. Themed "Invested in the Future" the conference provided attendees with an opportunity to examine topics ranging from unbundling to block trading, and automation to post-trade.
Kicking off with a focus on MiFID II, Fidessa's senior regulatory adviser Dr Christian Voigt outlined the impact that US buy-sides should expect from this European-based regulation. David Polen, Global Head of Electronic Execution at Fidessa, discussed the difference between handling high-touch and low-touch order flow, and explained how brokers have tooled themselves up to offer critical services to the buy-side. A panel made up of representatives from BATS, Luminex and PDQ looked at the issues buy-sides face in filling large block orders. Chaired by Jay Biancamano, Head of US Sell-side Product Marketing at Fidessa, the group concluded that regulatory overreach was hampering block trading today and recommended allowing the market to determine the block landscape, not regulators.
Day two focused on Fidessa's award-winning buy-side product set and the initiatives underway to drive them forward, interlaced with some first-hand industry experience from firms including SSgA, Liquidnet, BGC Partners, TradeWeb and BlackRock.
Product Manager Steven Strange discussed Fidessa's compliance initiatives in holding simulation and stress testing, trading compliance and trade surveillance. Product Director Richard Hooke showcased recent work from Fidessa's technology lab around active compliance – a new way to leverage compliance data earlier in the decision-making process to enable fund managers to create valid orders faster to implement investment strategy. Trading-focused sessions ranged from achieving efficiencies with increased automation to capitalizing on recent developments in bond execution. Fidessa's Head of Post-trade, David Pearson, was joined by industry experts to discuss the ways in which post-trade operations are moving to a lower cost, more efficient and direct model.
Closing the conference, Alan Lawrence, Head of Buy-side Development, outlined Fidessa's buy-side product roadmap and the firm's ongoing plans to dramatically reduce total ownership costs with an automatic GUI install and provision of an automated testing platform.
With attendance up 17% on last year and positive industry feedback Fidessa plans to return again in the fall of 2017.