One of UK’s most established developers of trading platforms for the financial services industry, has strengthened its commitment to an arduous turnaround after it was awarded a special grant from a government organization. Greater London-based Ariel Communications (Ariel), the software developer behind the platforms used by CFD giants; ETX Capital and London Capital Group, secures funding for new projects under the Technology Strategy Board. The funding comes on the back of a complete restructure at the 18-year-old firm.
Ariel, under the guidance of newly appointed CEO Simon Cox, aims to take heed of the platform development world. With the aid of new funding, the firm will release a new trading platform with enhanced capabilities to serve retail brokers and service providers across the globe.
Ariel’s new platform is expected to be the first Back-to-Back-to-Back (B2B2B) capability in distributed trading. It will allow retail trading solutions to be deployed internationally; meeting local regulatory compliance requirements. This new approach will significantly reduce deployment and installation costs without compromising the range of trading capabilities.
Simon Cox, Ariel’s CEO spoke about the new initiative in a comment to Forex Magnates, saying: “We are delighted to receive this grant to support our continued drive to innovate in the financial trading software market. We have an 18-year track record in the industry, providing insight, expertise and experience in this specialist arena – and will be announcing some exciting plans over the coming months in line with our new strategy.
This grant from the Technology Strategy Board will enable Ariel to further push the boundaries in terms of software capabilities and trading model solutions – all developed in-house with our specialist UK team.”
London and Fin-tech
The marriage between finance and technology is a crucial element to the financial services industry at large. Although London is home to the largest market in FX trading (according to the most recent BIS survey), its technological innovation is disregarded, and UK firms have been behind the largest dealer to dealer trading portals in the FX markets e.g. Reuters and EBS. Research carried out by CityUK shows that the financial services sector contributes to 9% of UK GDP.
Ariel has been awarded the grant under the Technology Strategy Board, which is the UK’s innovation agency. Its goal is to accelerate economic growth by stimulating and supporting business-led innovation.
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Sponsored by the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (BIS), the Technology Strategy Board brings together business, research and the public sector, supporting and accelerating the development of innovative products and services to meet market needs, tackle major societal challenges and help build the future economy.
In an era where platform providers upgrade their terminals like changes in the British weather.
What makes Ariel any different? The firm will focus on the full partnership finalist in a global market place.
Mr Cox explained: “The key innovation part of the project is the development of a configurable, geographically distributed master/slave trading architecture. The project will provide a unique distributed trading capability in which a master trading system will control and link together any number of slave trading systems, each of which support their own user community.
This new deployment architecture and its trading chain (liquidity provider to master broker to broker to client trader) is designed to ensure that a trade is fully, and only completed once the end-to-end chain transactions have been confirmed. Client data can be stored and administered centrally or distributed across multiple geographic regions according to local legal and regulatory requirements.”
Ariel was awarded a grant of £238,000, and in addition, the firm is investing its own capital of £480,000 into the project.
2013 has been an interesting year for platform providers, notably the MetaQuotes debacle brought both opportunities and threats for industry participants. Overall, the monopoly effect of MT4, and nothing else has slowly been challenged by the likes of cTrader, Protrader and tradable. Ariel’s new platform is expected to be welcomed by the marketplace.