8 May 2019
Removing the Infrastructure Hurdles for Asian Trading
As the main driver of economic growth in the world currently, it is hardly surprising that the Asia Pacific region is rapidly gaining prominence among the global financial community as well.
With a 5.5% growth rate, which is nearly double the pace of growth in Europe and the US according to data produced by the IMF, the region has also been heavily investing in infrastructure, technology and connectivity in response to the rising demand.
Yet despite the rush from global infrastructure specialists to facilitate direct market access for western clients wishing to trade Asian markets, when it comes to facilitating Asian clients to trade outside their zone with the rest of the world, most are falling short of the mark.
There are a number of key reasons behind this gap in service provision. For financial firms based in Asia, it can be a significant struggle to find the right partner to help provide the information and knowledge needed to access new markets.
For example, as China opens up in terms of regulatory controls, many trading firms are keen to access these new opportunities but may be daunted by the prospect of where to start.
Many feel, quite rightly, that there is huge divide between them and larger service providers or HFT firms, most of whom are based in Europe and the US with little or no local presence, which in turn does not instil the client with confidence that their issues will be understood and resolved effectively.
Knowing the market
Bridging this gap is absolutely vital to the ability of these firms to diversify their existing business and ensure continued growth.
Firms need a partner who provides reliable infrastructure and networks in their target markets, but also recognises the importance of having the right people available on the ground who understand the culture, language and nuances of the region.
At BSO, we have already spent a number of years building infrastructure into Asia, and between locations in Asia, in order to facilitate market access for firms in western Europe and North America.
From there, it has been a logical progression for us to establish a presence in Asia as well in order to support firms wishing to access local networks, expand their activities to other Asian markets or even to access the rest of the world with ease.
Unlike many other infrastructure specialists, we are also committed to providing support services on the ground.
For example, we now have key hires who are based full-time in Singapore and Hong Kong who offer not only technical expertise, but also a very deep understanding of each region’s financial community, infrastructure, trading culture, language and regulatory landscape.
This key differentiator is enabling us to assist more clients than ever before in trading beyond their local market and in connecting to other global centres as well.
Capitalising on opportunities
In addition, we have a dedicated engineering centre in Asia which is able to provide client services 24/7, unlike most providers who still only have such support based in the US or Europe.
Again, removing the language and cultural barriers for our clients is a huge plus and ensures they will receive the right level of support, rather than adding to their frustration.
We take this one step further by sponsoring being active members of the highly-valued FIX Trading Community in Asia, where BSO’s head of Asia Pacific co-chairs the education and marketing committee.
We are also participants in the FIX working group looking at streamlining best practices around institutional trading of crypto assets.
All of this enables us to also understand the needs and constraints faced by the wider capital markets community and work together to formulate standards and technology solutions in response.
It is also vital to follow the unique and rapidly changing liquidity requirements of the Asian markets and to identify and establish where clients want to trade.
As a result, in addition to our established presence in Hong Kong, Singapore and Tokyo, we have also expanded our Asia coverage into Taiwan, Malaysia and mainland China – as well as India and Australia.
BSO now offers a very deep network in Southeast Asia, with lots of different options for diverse, low latency builds, all tailored to the client’s individual needs.
This has enabled us to even partner with very established firms in China, for example, who are seeking to compete on a level playing field with established western firms.
Clients from across the board see the obvious value of the BSO network, which combines extensive infrastructure with deep knowledge of the Asian and global markets.
As a result, when they come to us with a problem, in most cases we already have a solution for them and know how to remove those remaining hurdles, clearing the way for them to expand into new markets in Asia – and beyond.
Interested in learning more about our presence in Asia?