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A-Team Insight Blogs

F&C Becomes Latest To Join In Live Implementation of Cadis EDM Suite

Cadis Software’s flurry of client announcements continued this month with the news that F&C Investments had completed its implementation of the Cadis EDM Suite in support of its Charles River Development trading platform. The F&C news follows hot on the heels of last month’s announcement that Principal Global Investors had installed Cadis EDM to create a central security master file in just 11 weeks.

Both F&C and Principal represent significant transactions for Cadis. London-based F&C has more than £100 billion under management, while Principal Global Investors, based in Des Moines, Iowa, manages $250 billion. Dan Simpson, Cadis’ newly installed CEO, says several more client announcements are in the pipeline.

This slew of client wins has also coincided with the release of version 5.5 of the Cadis EDM Suite; Simpson says that between 50 and 60 per cent of existing clients are now using the new version. Among the improvements over previous versions is a focus on scalability as Cadis moves toward more central implementations, as exemplified by the Principal deal. Simpson says that Version 5.5 is the culmination of Cadis’ recent client experiences in this respect, and remarks that the company has spent a lot of time with Microsoft benchmarking and testing its bulk XML upload facility, whose response time has been reduced a thousand-fold.The new version also continues Cadis’ ongoing aim to package as much functionality as it can into a series of plug-ins that reduce work for buy-side technology departments.

Simpson says this approach – in which perhaps 85 per cent of the required functionality is available ‘off-the-shelf’ – helps technologists reap a quick return on their investments in this area.

According to Simpson, F&C’s equities department has rolled out Cadis EDM at several offices, including the London headquarters and the Edinburgh, Amsterdam and Dublin branches. The Cadis platform is being used to take data from F&C’s two implementations of the HiPortfolio back office systems – one on-site, the other external – from Bloomberg, and from various other vendors.

F&C feeds this data – comprising market prices, foreign exchange rates and its own positions – into a newly implemented, single trading platform: the Charles Rivers Investment Management System. Any exceptions generated by the process are sent to the appropriate back-office system for handling.

F&C emerged from the merger between F&C Management Holdings and ISIS Asset Management in 2004, which left the company with two separate back-office systems, feeding two separate trading platforms. This infrastructure meant that F&C required a solution that would enable it to gain greater control over its data and migrate to a single trading platform.

According to Peter Collins, information architect at F&C, “Following a swift implementation, Cadis has enabled us to migrate to a single trading platform, immediately delivering a return on our investment and improving business efficiency across the board.” Now that F&C is running a single trading platform and has the Cadis EDM Suite in place, it plans to migrate to a single back-office system in 2008. Simpson says it also plans to implement a similar set-up in its fixed-income department.

According to Simpson, the implementation involved the management, validation and governance over security data from between 10 and 12 different internal and external sources, including Bloomberg and the firm’s own back-office and other systems.

The new SMF helps Principal Global Investors to identify any data inconsistencies at an early stage, by comparing the master file to other sources, aiding quick resolution of any discrepancies. The firm’s data management team furthermore is using the Cadis EDM Suite’s rules engine to create basic rules without relying on the IT department.

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