Announcing our Pittsburgh Development Center

Announcing our Pittsburgh Development Center

Risk Focus, a consulting firm providing specialized business domain and technology implementations, announces the opening of their new Development Center in Pittsburgh. Risk Focus, founded in 2004, has an established international presence with headquarters in New York City and offices in London, Frankfurt, Toronto and Riga. For the past few years, Risk Focus has focused on expanding their Riga development team with great success attracting world-class developers. The company aims to repeat that achievement and extend its capabilities to meet the growing needs of its North American clients by opening a new development center in Pittsburgh.

Why Pittsburgh? This vibrant, innovative city has a deep pool of technical talent, drawn in by world-class universities, an affordable cost of living, and diverse tech community that has made it a top “NextTech” city. Pittsburgh was recently selected as the #2 Most Livable in the US with a wide variety of museums, rich performing and fine arts communities, perennially winning professional sports teams, and a paradise for foodies.

Pittsburgh combines an existing base of developers who know enterprise with a strong startup community that pairs well with the needs of its North American customers. Peter Meulbroek, Global Head of DevOps Solutions for Risk Focus said, “We view Pittsburgh as a highly-strategic expansion. The city is a high-tech research powerhouse that generates an exceptional level of talent, combined with a strong penchant for reinventing itself.”

The Risk Focus partners have deep ties into Pittsburgh. Tara Ronel, the new Head of Pittsburgh DevOps Solutions is a native Pittsburgher, as are several other Partners. The Risk Focus leadership believes in the community, its innovative culture, deep talent pool and growth opportunities, and expects the company to have a bright future there.

Ms. Ronel summed up the Pitt-RF match, saying, “Pittsburgh and Risk Focus have so much to offer each other. We’re excited to be a part of this dynamic city as it continually evolves and innovates. We’re here for the long haul and look forward to our mutual next generation tech advancements.”

 

Launching A Unique DevOps Engagement Model

Launching A Unique DevOps Engagement Model

Risk Focus Inc., a leading provider of DevOps Solutions for Financial Services companies, is announcing today the formal launch of its unique new offering, ‘The Player-Coach’. This service is a radical departure from the bureaucratic Cloud adoption programs that are common in large enterprises. It combines the planning and delivery principles of Agile with the automation opportunities of Cloud, giving flexibility in approach and adapting to learning, but still respecting the corporate gating and controls.

The Player-Coach is a one-of-a-kind service which empowers the client through active coaching and a close working relationship. This service combines an initial 1-2-week discovery phase that helps clients identify projects within their immediate needs that can be delivered quickly and cost-effectively.  This is followed by a 4-week iteration of implementation and deliverables. The outcome for the engagement is that within just six weeks the client has a working deliverable, a backlog of projects and tasks that can be addressed in the future, and a plan for completing them. The Risk Focus team can then perform structured iterations to complete this backlog . Current offerings are focused on areas listed below, and new ones are on the way:

CI/CD: building pipelines and repos, automated testing, gating and release management

Containerization and Container Orchestration: building containers, moving legacy apps into containers, building and scaling clusters

Cloud First Steps: defining an actionable vision, educating stakeholders, building a Minimum Viable Prototype

Public Cloud: infrastructure automation, application migration, cost management

Hybrid Cloud: common tooling, single pane of glass, support for multiple clouds

 

Vassil Avramov, CEO of Risk Focus, said: “We are excited about the success and client uptake of our initial offerings. Our team of specialists work alongside the client’s teams, seeing a project through from inception to delivery. Many firms need and want to use the Cloud more effectively, but don’t know where to start. This methodology helps them to get results very quickly and puts them on a sustainable path.”

Peter Meulbroek, Global Head of DevOps Solutions, added: “The key advantages of this engagement model are the quick results, the efficient and transparent process, and low cost. It gives firms the opportunity for their teams to fully participate in the development process and sets them up to take ownership of the deliverable going forward.”

Risk Focus works with its clients throughout the process, from defining and specifying the deliverables through identifying the technology and process challenges, to implementing the solutions and ensuring that the client’s team is ready to make use of the deliverables.

Risk Focus has extensive expertise in helping firms with everything DevOps and Cloud, from tooling and technology to delivery and software. Their practitioners are engaged for their knowledge and ability to reduce risk and speed up the delivery process at large enterprises.

Risk Focus Launches Frankfurt Operations

Risk Focus Inc., the Specialist Provider of Financial and DevOps Services, announced today that it has expanded its footprint in Europe by launching business operations in Frankfurt, Germany, to be run by Alexander Malkmus, an industry veteran with over 20 years of experience in leading highly-visible client engagements.

Having previously worked at Accenture and the Deutsche Börse, Alexander brings significant experience and knowledge to Risk Focus as the company continues to expand after having provided consultancy and development teams for the implementation of the OTC Trade Reporting platform in the Deutsche Börse‘s Regulatory Reporting Hub.

Vassil Avramov, CEO of Risk Focus, said: “Given our recent success in delivering major components of the Regulatory Reporting Hub at the Deutsche Börse, we are excited to formally establish a footprint in Frankfurt, which we see as a growing market for both our Financial Services and DevOps practices. Alexander brings experience not only of the local culture, but also delivery excellence, which is key for the type of mission-critical projects for which we are typically engaged.”

With an MSc in Business Administration, focused on Securities Trading, Clearing and Settlement Processes, from Goethe – Universität Frankfurt am Main, Alexander is able to help Risk Focus in achieving its business goals, and to provide clients with the same assurance on quality that is already associated with the company. His education as well as his experience have been proven by achievements in his career, making him a valuable addition to Risk Focus.

Alexander Malkmus added: “I’m thrilled to be taking on this role with Risk Focus. What impressed me most is their no-nonsense focus on the clients’ best interests, as well as their commitment to growing the business in Germany.”

Risk Focus has a proven track-record of implementing and consulting on risk and trade solutions as well as cloud services. Top banks, brokers and clearing houses are relying on Risk Focus for expertise in financial services and DevOps solutions, resulting in an increase in demand for its services.

Risk Focus APIX Powers Xignite’s CloudAddin

Risk Focus APIX Powers Xignite’s CloudAddin

March 16, 2018, New York, London, Risk Focus, Inc., the specialist provider of trading, regulatory, and risk services, announced today that its APIX For Excel product is the engine that powers Xignite Inc.’s CloudAddin, a Microsoft® Excel Add-In, specifically designed for Excel power users, application developers and data scientists. APIX powered Xignite CloudAddIn lets analysts, portfolio managers and quants access and integrate streaming real-time, fundamentals and historical financial market data directly into Excel spreadsheets. APIX is unique in its ability to dynamically expose enterprise service APIs to Excel® in the form of easy-to-use native functions. APIX combined with zero footprint data APIs from Xignite completely eliminates the need to store or manipulate market data on customer site.

Srikant Ganesan, Head of Risk and Trade Solutions at Risk Focus, commented: “CTOs and software groups struggle to make Excel-based applications first class consumers of the data service APIs already being used by the rest of their organizations. They usually have to support custom solutions for their Excel clients that don’t scale well and are difficult to secure and audit; they also require frequent deployments onto the desktop. Despite this, Excel is widely used by every client we work with. We call this ‘the Excel Paradox’ and are pleased that Xignite has selected APIX for its CloudAddin so that clients can benefit from the flexibility of Excel, while accessing the models and data they need through secure, scalable, supportable and auditable APIs.”

“The world still runs on Excel and Wall Street is seriously addicted to it,” says Stephane Dubois, CEO and Founder of Xignite. “Most professional and retail investors still use Excel to develop analytical models and drive investment decisions. The financial data needed to feed those models often come from expensive terminals or unstable sources via legacy interfaces or painful and time-consuming manual downloads. By using CloudAddin for seamless access from Excel to the sea of data we have in our Market Data Cloud, our clients can have a consistent market data source across their application stack, and maybe even save the cost of a few terminals in the process.”

Xignite’s new CloudAddin simplifies extracting and integrating financial data. After installing the CloudAddin, users can easily access billions of financial data points from any of Xignite’s 45 APIs, which cover millions of instruments across all asset classes, including equities, ETFs, mutual funds, fixed income, forex, options, futures, and other derivatives. Users can also stream real-time data into Excel via HTTP by simply calling an Excel function.

Shortlisted For The FStech Awards

RegTek.Solutions and Risk Focus Inc., leaders in control and compliance solutions, today were named as finalists in the FStech Awards in the ‘Collaboration or Partnership of the Year’ category. RegTek.Solutions and Risk Focus were recognized for their development and implementation of a MiFID II trade reporting solution for Deutsche Börse’s Regulatory Reporting Hub. Using agile methodology and best-of-breed, off-the-shelf components, Risk Focus’ cloud-based testing and development process should serve as a blueprint for future implementations at the exchange.

Brian Lynch, CEO of RegTek.Solutions, commented: “We are honored to have made it as finalists with our partner Risk Focus; this award is a great acknowledgement of our teams’ year-long hard work and dedication, but also of our collaborative approach to solving firms’ regulatory reporting challenges. Working hand-in-hand, we were able to meet and exceed expectations with Validate.Trade going live way ahead of the regulatory deadline.”

Risk Focus provided the specialist consultancy and development teams to implement all of the key components of the Regulatory Reporting Hub’s OTC trade reporting functionality, with RegTek.Solutions’ Validate.Trade used as the validation engine for all FpML and ISO 20022 messages. The Regulatory Reporting Hub went live on January 3, supporting all cash and derivative asset classes covered by MiFIR; it has met all the performance SLAs for throughput and latency.

Lloyd Altman, Global Head of Business Development at Risk Focus, commented: “We are delighted to be recognized for our collaboration with RegTek Solutions to deliver this mission-critical industry utility. Deutsche Börse’s strategic plan was clear: to enable clients to report all their trades and quotes using FIX, FpML, or ISO 20022, while handling millions of trades a day and thousands per second. We are proud to have achieved that goal and to contribute to the success of the Regulatory Reporting Hub along with our partner, RegTek.Solutions.”

Deutsche Börse Regulatory Reporting Hub partners with RegTek.Solutions and Risk Focus for MiFID II

Deutsche Börse Regulatory Reporting Hub partners with RegTek.Solutions and Risk Focus for MiFID II

The Regulatory Reporting Hub of Deutsche Börse Group has launched a partnership with Risk Focus and its software subsidiary, RegTek.Solutions, headquartered in New York. Risk Focus will provide key system components for the Regulatory Reporting Hubs’ OTC Trade Reporting solution, including RegTek.Solutions’ Validate.Trade product.

The functionality of the components provided by Risk Focus and RegTek.Solutions includes interpretation of instrument details of OTC derivatives submitted in FpML or XML format as well as a rules engine for applying the regulatory validations, eligibility checks and deferrals.

“In the dynamic environment with frequent updates of regulatory details, the approach to using a rules engine has already proven to be very useful. OTC trade reporting is one of the backbones of MiFID II, which is going to be effective as of January 2018. Deutsche Börse’s MiFID II OTC trade reporting service will provide clients with an efficient and simple-to-use way of meeting their OTC transparency requirements in accordance with the new regulation,” said Georg Gross, Head of Regulatory Services at Deutsche Börse.

“Given the extreme time pressure that firms are under to comply with MiFID II, we are proud to provide a version of Validate.Trade to all users of the Deutsche Börse’s Trade Reporting Services that allows them to start testing their OTC Trade Report Submissions straightaway. Our partnership with Deutsche Börse will enable us to combine existing and custom components to bring this important MiFID II Trade Reporting Service to market,” said Lloyd Altman, Partner, Risk Focus.

Deutsche Börse Group has concentrated its solutions for regulatory compliance onto one platform – the Regulatory Reporting Hub. This Hub enables sell-side and buy-side clients as well as corporates and trading venues to meet their regulatory obligations efficiently and reliably – publication requirements as well as reporting to all relevant  National Competent Authorities, covering multiple regulations.

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