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The 2016 Trading Technology 40: Robert Sloan

< The 2016 Trading Technology 4028Robert SloanManaging PartnerS3 PartnersPNR

Robert Sloan’s CV has a certain coincidental symmetry. Before a Wall Street career distinguished by the launch of Credit Suisse First Boston’s prime brokerage and the pioneering CSFB/Tremont Hedge Fund Index, Sloan worked as a translator for Japan’s Ministry of International Trade and Industry. Today, Sloan and S3 Partners, the New York–based company he founded in 2003, engage in translation of a different sort. “Every firm speaks its own language” in processing, managing and analyzing data, he says: “There is a foreign language element to it.” S3, which Sloan began solo “with just an idea,” has grown into a 40-person, international financial technology, advisory and analytics firm dedicated to standardizing and streamlining data and work flows for hedge funds and other clients. “Technology companies want to be services firms, and vice versa,” says the 52-year-old managing partner. “We are both, and that makes us unique.” S3 pulled those capabilities together in creating Blacklight, a two-year-old software-as-a-service — a counterparty intelligence analytics platform, or “dedicated service through technology,” as Sloan describes it. Currently serving $1.4 trillion of assets, the platform is designed to improve buy- and sell-side trading relationships; its data and analytics free the players to focus on capital and balance-sheet efficiency rather than on system mechanics and “translations.” Animating Blacklight are the Basel III capital rules and other postcrisis reforms, which have upended traditional trading, collateral and liquidity dynamics. Sloan sees this as a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for reinvention, particularly for the buy side. “Asset managers need access to the power grid to trade,” he says, employing a favored metaphor. “Electricity is expensive and becoming more expensive.”


 2016 Trading Technology 40Click below to view profiles
1. Raymond Tierney IIIBloomberg2. Richard PragerBlackRock3. Chris IsaacsonBATS Global Markets4. Jonathan RossKCG Holdings5. Bradley PetersonNasdaq
6. Brad LevyMarkit7. Dan KeeganCiti8. Ronald DePoaloFidelity Institutional9. Raj MahajanGoldman Sachs Group10. Ari StudnitzerCME Group
11. Mayur KapaniIntercontinental Exchange12. Gerald O’ConnellCBOE Holdings13. Nicholas ThemelisMarketAxess Holdings14. Gil MandelzisEBS BrokerTec (ICAP)15. Bill Chow and Richard LeungHong Kong Exchanges and Clearing
16. Rob ParkIEX Group17. Philip WeisbergThomson Reuters18. John Mackay (Mack) GillMillenniumIT19. Robert CornishInternational Securities Exchange20. Paul HamillCitadel Securities
21. Eric NollConvergex22. Tyler Moeller and Joshua WalskyBroadway Technology23. Rishi NangaliaREDI Holdings24. Veronica AugustssonCinnober Financial Technology25. Alasdair HaynesAquis Exchange
26. Manoj NarangMana Partners27. Gaurav SuriArcesium28. Robert SloanS3 Partners29. Anton Katz and Stephen MockAQR Capital Mgmt30. Stu TaylorAlgomi
31. D. Keith Ross Jr.PDQ Enterprises32. Donal ByrneCorvil33. Alfred EskandarPortware34. R. Cromwell CoulsonOTC Markets Group35. Masayuki HosakaRakuten
36. Peter Maragos and David KaratDash Financial37. Amar KuchinadElectronifie38. Jennifer NayarSR Labs39. Dave SnowdonMetamako40. Dan RajuTradier