Many have computer science or programming backgrounds. Most occupy business-unit executive positions, often in the C-suite. They are responsible for the high-tech machinery of modern financial markets engines running at speeds faster than the eye can see.
These are the leading system designers, managers and innovators spotlighted in Institutional Investors inaugural Trading Technology 30. They range from, at the top of the list, the technology executives of globe-spanning exchange operators NYSE Euronexts Dominique Cerutti, CME Groups Kevin Kometer and Nasdaq OMX Groups Anna Ewing to, at No. 30, Tom Sosnoff, an options technology pioneer running a new-media start-up.
Eleven of the 30 represent exchanges. Several others are from buy- and sell-side firms and other ventures that run bourselike alternative or over-the-counter markets or trading desks hooked closely into exchanges. Whether focused on equities, fixed income or derivatives, all have evolved into technology companies.
NYSE Euronext, for example, in addition to maintaining its own infrastructure, sells systems to other markets a $500 million-in-revenue business that Cerutti expects will reach $1.5 billion by 2015. At Singapore Exchange, a customer of Nasdaq OMXs competing market technologies unit, the goal of CEO Magnus Böcker (No. 10) is to run the fastest bourse in the world, with transaction speeds well under 100 microseconds.
It is a constant arms race to keep up with ever-rising trade, quote and messaging volumes while staying abreast of technology advances as well as regulatory changes.
The Trading Tech 30 were selected by II editors and staff after considering nominations and other input from industry experts. The leadership criteria include career accomplishments and contributions made at both individual companies and to the industry at large; scope and complexity of executive responsibilities; and pure technological innovation.
BlueMountain Capital Management
London Stock Exchange
Chi-X Global Holdings
J.P. Morgan Asset Management
International Securities Exchange
Interactive Brokers Group
BATS Global Markets
Goldman Sachs Group
Fidelity Capital Markets
Chicago Board Options Exchange
Getco Execution Services
Nasdaq OMX Group