case-studies

12 December 2017

R.J. O’BRIEN CEMENTS ITS INDUSTRY POSITION WITH BSO’S GLOBAL NETWORK

R.J. O’Brien Limited provides clearing and settlement services to professional and eligible counterparty clients who transact business on the world’s leading futures and options exchanges.

R.J. O’Brien offers clearing and execution-only services, risk management and direct market access to exchange-listed financial and commodity derivatives worldwide. Proximity and colocation services are also provided by R.J. O’Brien.RJO'Brien

R.J. O’Brien Limited is a UK affiliate of R.J. O’Brien & Associates, the oldest and largest independent futures brokerage and clearing firm in the United States. R.J. O’Brien offers state-of-the-art electronic trading and 24-hour trade execution on all major futures exchanges worldwide. R.J. O’Brien Limited is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (FRN 114120).

Overview

In recent years, R.J. O’Brien’s reputation for independence and professionalism has propelled the company to become the number one clearing house in the US. Its UK subsidiary (previously Kyte Group) was no different, having enjoyed a similar position in the UK prior to being acquired.

When the two companies merged their operations together, this provided R.J. O’Brien’s technical team the ideal opportunity to improve its network connectivity. Adam Solomons, R.J. O’Brien’s Chief Customer Officer EMEA, commented:

“We had grown frustrated with our previous network supplier. It was expensive, the support experience was no longer up to scratch and there were legacy projects that needed completing. We wanted a provider experienced in the industry, one that could refresh our core network backbone with a stable, low-latency global solution.”

R.J. O’Brien was quick to identify the qualities it wanted from its new network provider – a more consultative approach, faster response times and a flexible network service that could be tailored to its business objectives and client priorities. Other important considerations included lower latencies and cost.

Challenges

For R.J. O’Brien, this meant finding a service provider that could carefully balance cost, performance and network redundancy within the context of:

  • Global connectivity – the ability to offer a single point of access for R.J. O’Brien’s clients to its services from anywhere in the world
  • Service assurance offering a resilient service and full network redundancy
  • Rapid service delivery – ensuring fast response times for any new projects
  • Flexibility – the capacity and capability to adapt the service in line with R.J. O’Brien’s evolving technical and business objectives
  • Technical Support – highly knowledgeable and responsive 24/7/365 support team

Devinder Singh Harry, CIO EMEA at R.J. O’Brien explained:

“We had demanding requirements, there’s no denying that. Our clients trust us completely, so it was important our new network provider had the technical expertise we required, but also understood our team’s dedication.”

The Solution

Eventually, R.J. O’Brien’s search brought the team to BSO. Adam Solomons continued,

“When we first evaluated BSO, we found we shared many values. For example, our main strength is our independence, much like BSO. We’re nimble, dynamic and most of all, entirely focused on delivering an incomparable global service. We could tell these characteristics were deeply embedded within BSO.”

BSO got straight to work delivering a highly reliable, low latency connectivity solution:

  • 10gb connectivity between Frankfurt (FR2) – London (Interxion) – London’s Business Design Centre (R.J. O’Brien’s office) – Copthall Avenue (London).
  • A single point of access for R.J. O’Brien’s clients via BSO’s global network of 91 data centres
  • Low latency redundant lines
  • Designated routing
  • Hosting in Equinix LD4

Devinder Singh Harry said,

“BSO ticked all the boxes – pricing, latency, redundancy. Also, for us market reputation holds a lot of clout. Seeing other companies in our industry use BSO convinced us we were making the right choice, especially when assessing its capabilities in the US and BSO’s ability to react quickly to our requirements”.

Results and Next Steps

R.J. O’Brien now has a global network supporting its business objectives and the demands of R.J. O’Brien’s own clients. For example, R.J. O’Brien’s clients enjoy seamless access to brokerage, clearing and trading services anywhere in the world by cross-connecting at any major financial data centre with BSO.

R.J. O’Brien’s next objective is to optimise and expand its core backbone connectivity across to the US and Asia. For example, the two companies are implementing an ultra-low latency line (under 79ms RTD) between London and CME Chicago that will raise R.J. O’Brien’s market competitiveness even further.

Finally, many of R.J. O’Brien’s clients request connectivity into the data centres it is operational in. Since working together, R.J. O’Brien now refers them directly to BSO. This makes BSO one of R.J. O’Brien’s few trusted affiliate partners in this space and demonstrates the strength of relationship between the two companies.