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Eagle Sees 2012 Focus on Globalisation, EDM and Cloud

Following a record year of revenue and profitability growth in 2011, Eagle Investment Systems expects to continue the trend in 2012, backed by significant investment in R&D and personnel as it expands particularly outside of its US base.

According to president John Lehner, the company has added a record number of new clients in 2011 and is taking steps to ensure a repetition in 2012. He sees three main areas of activity next year for Eagle, an independently operated subsidiary of BNY Mellon Bank that focuses on investment analytics and reference data management.

In response to the ongoing globalisation of its client base, Lehner says, Eagle will continue to expand its operations outside of the US. The Boston-based company currently employs around 600 staff, with 125-150 of those located overseas. The company is currently evaluating potential locations to add to its main operations in India, Singapore and London.

A second area of focus in 2012 will be enterprise data management. Lehner reckons that business interest has expanded beyond the initial interest in the concept of EDM, which focused on management of reference and other securities administration data, with true demand for data management in support of risk management and analytics. Lehner says Eagle’s addition earlier this year of Fincad’s library of risk and other analytical calculations has seen client inquiries take off as a result. “Three years ago, people wanted one sleeve of data management,” he says. “Now, it’s truly enterprise.”

Finally, Eagle expects to see greater uptake of its cloud-based solution – Eagle Access. According to Lehner, of the company’s two dozen or so new clients added during 2011, some 80% opted for a non-software-based solution. Eagle supports Eagle Access from its Boston headquarters and from its facility in Pune, India, where a team of 50 staff support the offering. The company is looking to add an additional Eagle Access support facility, possibly in Eastern Europe, Lehner says.

The use of Eagle Access by parent BNY Mellon helps in discussions with clients, Lehner says. For many prospective clients, the fact that BNY Mellon is an outsourced customer represents a form of due diligence. Lehner says the spectrum of client types now using the system has expanded greatly since its launch. Early adopters were smaller firms. Today, Lehner says, “interest is just as likely to come from a global institution as from a small hedge fund.”

One driver of this broad acceptance of the cloud approach has been the adoption of Salesforce.com. Lehner points out that clients’ uptake of Salesforce as a client relationship management system, and broader uptake of cloud-based applications in accounting, human resources and other corporate functions, has helped lift comfort levels for this kind of application.

For Eagle, Eagle Pass makes for more efficient support. “We can change client implementations more quickly,” Lehner says. As it responds to changing regulatory requirements, Eagle is able to make changes more quickly with no need for individual upgrades of clients’ software implementations.

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