Direct market access

Thomson Reuters steps up DMA with Aegisoft acquisition

Global financial information and market data provider Thomson Reuters plans to boost its direct market access (DMA) capabilities following the acquisition of the assets and business of Aegisoft, a US-based electronic trading technology firm.

Aegisoft’s product range includes the Athena multi-asset trading platform, which provides order and execution management, exchange connectivity and foreign exchange aggregation to buy-side quant and hedge funds, typically engaged in automated and stat-arb strategies, as well as the agency and proprietary trading desks of sell-side firms.

According to Thomson Reuters, the acquisition is “a significant step forward” in its ability to facilitate the broker-sponsored DMA services of sell-side clients through both its terminals and order routing networks.

Stephen Wilson, global head of exchange traded instruments at Thomson Reuters, said that the firm was now able to offer its customer base “native exchange connectivity” as well as the administrative tools required to monitor client DMA flow. He said the transaction completed the firm’s DMA order flow management offering, alongside its existing strong order routing and execution management capabilities.

By providing direct market connectivity through Thomson Reuters Trading for Exchanges (TRTEx), the firm’s execution management system, or through a FIX interface via Thomson Reuters Order Routing Networks, the company expects to broaden its global transactions offering for broker dealers, investment firms and hedge funds.

“Consolidating our complete transactions workflow into a simple, powerful trading platform within the desktop will bring greater efficiencies and improve trading opportunities for our clients. We look forward to bringing further workflow propositions to market through 2010,” said Wilson.

He added that despite the enhancement to its DMA offering, Thomson Reuters has no ambitions to seek broker-dealer status itself. “Ownership of order flow should stay with the brokers; we simply aim to facilitate,” he said.

Financial software providers such as Orc and SunGard have acquired agency brokerage businesses in recent years. Orc acquired Stockholm-based agency broker and technology provider Neonet in January.