New SunGard suite bids to cut sell-side costs

Financial technology services provider SunGard has unveiled a new suite of trading solutions that will help Europe’s mid-tier brokers to meet increasing buy-side demands to deliver best execution.
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Financial technology services provider SunGard has unveiled a new suite of trading solutions that will help Europe’s mid-tier brokers to meet increasing buy-side demands to deliver best execution. Available globally, SunGard’s Valdi aims to lower the cost of delivering multi-asset trading and execution capabilities by offering the sell-side access to a range of tools and services on a ‘software as a service’ basis. The Valdi suite includes global trade order management, integrated direct market access, compliance, liquidity solutions and hosted services.

In the first phase of a global rollout, SunGard launched the Valdi order management system (OMS) in the Americas and Valdi hosted smart order routing and liquidity solutions in Europe. “Our strategy is to help broker-dealers generate new revenue and intelligently and cost-effectively navigate the global trading environment. Valdi bolsters that strategy by providing integrated OMS and execution technologies, along with real-time, multi-asset trading activity, exposure and risk information,” said Raj Mahajan, president of SunGard’s trading business. “By focusing on ASP-based delivery models and hosted services, Valdi also helps address our customers’ need for faster deployment with no ongoing maintenance, so that they can focus on revenue-generation and core competencies.”

In Europe, the new hosted Valdi services are designed to offer market-neutral smart order routing and algorithmic trading to broker-dealers alongside existing global low-latency, ASP-based market access provided via GL Stream.

SunGard says Valdi will reduce European brokers’ cost, technology and operational burdens by providing trading technology as a managed service. The firm added that Valdi’s transaction-based payment model would reduce upfront investment and ongoing technology maintenance costs.

David Morgan, marketing director, trading and client connectivity at SunGard’s global trading business, says that many brokers across Europe are struggling with the cost of delivering best execution to buy-side clients in an increasingly fragmented European marketplace. “Many brokers are still connected only to their local domestic exchange, but this will change under pressure both from the buy-side and the regulator,” he said. Morgan asserts that brokers looking to deliver best execution in Europe face high fixed costs which cannot be justified by potentially low and variable trading volumes. Due to a combination of low-latency connectivity, hosted services and the exchange memberships of GLNet’s broker network, Morgan says Valdi can make pan-European execution affordable for Europe’s mid-tier brokers.

“For a Frankfurt-based broker who’s currently only trading on Xetra, we can arrange low latency connectivity and membership services to three leading MTFs, for example, via another GLNet broker, who can also take on clearing and who will charge on a per trade basis. This avoids high set-up costs, but if you end up doing high volumes, you can change quickly and we can provide the connectivity,” explains Morgan. GLNET is proprietary international trading and data network which provides more than 650 financial institutions with access to around 140 trading venues.

The Valdi OMS is an integrated, ASP-based, order, execution and risk management system for equities and options trading in the Americas, with integrated functionality for liquidity services, listed options trading and risk management from Assent and MicroHedge, re-branded as Valdi Liquidity Solutions and Valdi Options Solutions, respectively. The OMS incorporates components from its existing Brass and GL order management systems, but SunGard will continue to support the Brass OMS.

Yassine Brahim, president of SunGard’s global trading business, added, “SunGard’s Valdi Liquidity Solutions provide customers with one access point to displayed liquidity across Europe for best execution, offering high-performance DMA, smart routing, algorithms, sponsored access and clearing and settlement services. The provision of these services in a hosted environment will help customers expand their business while better managing the costs of a post-MiFID trading environment.”