Iris Financial Systems, a provider of customized trading and risk management systems for the front and middle offices of global investment banks, has redeveloped its software and core technology to run on the Java 2 Platform, Enterprise Edition (J2EE), according to the company which made the announcement at the Wall Street On Java Technology Show and Conference this past Tuesday.
Iris, founded in San Francisco, with offices in New York, London and Tokyo, made the decision 18 months ago to build from scratch what it terms a component services architecture (CSA) compliant with J2EE.
Iris started life about 11 years ago with a C++ integrated database and achieved 60 percent reuse of C++ objects, he says.
The integrated database for C++ provided it with the experience to build reusable code. Most of its trading systems for fixed income and fixed-income derivatives, equities, and equity-derivatives markets, were built and installed in production within six to nine months for a blue-chip client list that includes Deutsche Bank, Merrill Lynch, HSBC, Morgan Stanley, Bank of America, Barclays Global, Nikko Securities and Tokyo Mitsubishi.
Why change now? "That's what our customers are saying is important to them, not just the Tier 1, bulge bracket firms but across the market, large and small," says Kevin Galliers, vice president sales & marketing at Iris Financial. "They're trending away from packages and buying applications based on J2EE," he says.
"J2EE appears to be the first component standard that delivers on the reuse promise," he adds. Components use a large percentage of pre-written code, reduce development time and simplify systems integration, he says. Galliers says clients are making this IT investment for the next three years.
Beta testing of CSA began in equities, fixed income and risk management with three customers. A real-time risk MIS application was tested last summer, which sits above a stovepipe trading system. It calculates profit and loss and risk numbers and distributes them across the network. Iris is currently finishing testing for the equities- and fixed-income-trading systems. Tests were conducted in London, New York and Tokyo.
While Galliers did not know of any competitors who also utilize the J2EE standard, he says "I would be surprised if any organization have developed a component-based architecture built to the J2EE standard optimized for trading."
Some are built in Java but they are not taking advantage of the enterprise features. He notes that Calypso is focusing on the back office whereas Iris is targeted at the front and middle.
"What this gives us competitively depends on the uptake of Java," says Galliers. Banks in Europe are probably 12 months behind the U.S. uptake in J2EE, he estimates.
The official launch of CSA will take place on April 11 in London, followed by a New York launch in late April or early May.
Ivy is Editor-at-Large for Advanced Trading and Wall Street & Technology. Ivy is responsible for writing in-depth feature articles, daily blogs and news articles with a focus on automated trading in the capital markets. As an industry expert, Ivy has reported on a myriad ... View Full Bio