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Thomson Reuters’ Craig Talks up a More Integrated Approach to Risk Data

The launch of its new Governance, Risk and Compliance (GRC) business unit at the end of last month, is the culmination of two years of integration work behind the scenes at data giant Thomson Reuters. David Craig, who was recently appointed president of the business unit, explains to Reference Data Review that GRC is aiming to support firms’ requirements for a more integrated approach to risk management across financial institutions’ data silos by bringing together functionality for credit, market, operational and regulatory risk management. The vendor is also adding in legal hierarchy data to this offering at the moment, he says.

Craig has been heavily involved in the integration work between the Thomson and Reuters’ business units since the merger two years ago and the GRC launch represents the integration of Thomson’s legal data content with Reuters’ financial data content. The business unit also signifies the consolidation of 16 separate products under one umbrella in order to facilitate a more joined up approach to the risk management challenge, according to Craig. “This reflects what is happening within financial institutions themselves, as there is a shift in the boardroom in the approach to risk management by including operational and regulatory risk in the overall picture,” he explains.

He stresses that firms are not being required to reinvent the risk management rulebook; it is rather a matter of bringing together disparate and siloed risk management and operational functions. The previous perception of risk management as the domain purely of quantitative modelling is being changed with the emergence of a more holistic and “common sense” approach to the function. Craig refers to the recent Basel Committee principles on governance as proof of this change in attitude.

For its part, Thomson Reuters is aiming to assist its clients in the regulatory compliance endeavour by increasing the automation of this process. “The focus is on automating and taking away the whole pain of the process of manual interpretation of regulatory developments, system design and policy implementation, as well as the follow up of risk and controls checking,” explains Craig. To this end, the vendor is using the data services of the Complinet business, which it acquired in June, to monitor regulatory developments and feed this into its product development and enhancement process.

The data on these regulatory developments can then be translated into action via the global taxonomy that the vendor has developed for this purpose, contends Craig. “The single taxonomy allows us to react to regulatory updates every day and feed this into the software information flow via a semantic layer that translates this data into a regulatory reporting context,” he elaborates.

The focus is on continuous content improvement and increased global coverage for the future, he continues. The GRC unit is also working on a series of joint ventures with other divisions, including one with risk solution Top Office, more news on which will be available later this year along with a full product roadmap.

On the Enterprise division front, Thomson Reuters is also heavily engaged in integration work and is focused on joining the platform up with its various data content sets. The vendor is also working on developing its flagship DataScope solution as the overall platform for its various data offerings on both the Thomson and Reuters sides of the business for its non-real-time content, under the leadership of global head of Enterprise content Roseann Palmieri, who joined back in April.

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