XSP’s December 2012 acquisition by SunGard has given the corporate actions specialist greater geographic reach, a broader customer base and the opportunity to integrate its software with SunGard middle- and back-office applications.
XSP’s latest geographic push is into Asia-Pacific, where it has customers, but mostly global customers with offices in the region. Taking advantage of SunGard’s presence, the company has put employees offering local sales and support on the ground in Tokyo, Hong Kong, Singapore and Sydney.
Noting that Asia-Pacific is the world’s fastest-growing financial services market and is largely untapped in terms of corporate actions automation, Harry Rana, director of business development, Asia-Pacific, for SunGard XSP, says: “As volumes and complexity of corporate actions increase, growing operational risk is being managed via costly manual processes. This is especially true in Asia, where the tendency has been to manage risk by increasing headcount rather than automation. SunGard XSP delivers advanced technology solutions that manage every step n the corporate actions lifecycle, increasing firms’ levels of straight through processing and reducing the need for manual intervention and the possibility of human error.”
As part of SunGard, XSP’s geographic coverage has been increased from 106 locations in 13 countries to a potential 220 locations in 70 countries. Brendan Farrell, CEO of XSP, says: “One driver for being acquired by SunGard was to take advantage of its global footprint. Our solutions were needed in Asia, but we did not have the resources to expand into the region. Local presence is a tremendous benefit to us.”
The company introduced a Japanese version of its XSPrisa software-as-a-service corporate actions solution at Sibos in Osaka last year and says it is generating significant interest. The solution is configured to support Japanese language, with Mandarin next on XSP’s to-do list, ahead of a Portuguese version that will be promoted through SunGard’s presence in Brazil.
Farrell says most customers choose to use hosted versions of the XSP v5 enterprise solution and the cut-down XSPrisa software, with both XSP and SunGard hosting the solutions and SunGard also offering a managed service.
Since the acquisition, XSP has been working to integrate its solutions with SunGard applications. The companies had previously integrated the XSP platform with SunGard’s Phase3 securities processing solution in a hosted environment, but this year XSP has integrated v5 and XSPrisa with as many middle- and back-office SunGard solutions as makes sense. Farrell notes about 15, including RIMS, Invest One, Global One, Global Plus and AddVantage.
XSP has also been readying its software for the ISO 20022 standard for corporate actions messaging that will be mandatory in the US in 2015 and is expected to be in place for issuer messages in Japan in 2014. Australia is also working towards the standard that follows the more commonly used ISO 15022 standard.
XSP has been keeping step with DTCC’s reengineering programme that will move all its corporate actions services to ISO 20022 by 2014. To date, XSP can support all inbound messages and it is working in parallel with DTCC to support ISO 20022 notification and response options. It will, however, continue to support both standards until an industry-wide switch over to ISO 20022 is made.
Says Farrell: “We will handle and host the migration from ISO 15022 to ISO 20022. That will be key in the Asia-Pacific market.”
As SunGard underpins the build out of XSP across Asia-Pacific, it is also active in consolidating and building the company’s presence in EMEA and North America. Its next focus is South America, where it already has significant operations.