Build or buy, it’s all about differentiation


Early this morning, New York time, I and about 40 other people attended the panel “Evolving Platform Technology & New Markets” which was sponsored by Caplin as part of Profit & Loss’s Forex Network tradeshow in New York. As Jennifer mentioned recently, the panel consisted of Raj Iyer of BNY Mellon Global Markets, Thomas Lo of FinaniciaLogix Group and Jose Cadalzo of Caplin systems, all questioned and moderated by Colin Lambert, Editor of Profit & Loss magazine.

The panel at P&L Forex Network

The discussion was wide ranging and touched on what institutional trading platforms can learn from retail traders, FX trading in Japan vs that in the USA, and on how different the requirements for software as a service for a bank might be from the service that Amazon and Google might offer.

However the main point that all of the panelists agreed upon was that when creating a single-dealer platform there isn’t really a choice between building it and buying it – every bank does some of each, but the issue is how much you buy and how much you build yourself.

The conclusion was that there’s very little point in spending time and money building anything that doesn’t differentiate you from your competitors. Differentiation can be in the pricing and the products, it can be in the content and analysis, and it can be in the way that the interface is designed and that information is presented.

An interesting conversation. I’m sure we’ll hear more about this in the weeks and months to come.

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