Best Banks Awards: kACE

kACE, a FENICS products, has been voted the winner of the Best Vendor for Risk Management/Options Pricing Software category at the 2018 FX Week Best Banks Awards

Richard Brunt at GFI Fenics
Richard Brunt, managing director of FENICS Software Limited, says the firm underwent a major rebrand in July

FENICS Software was launched in New York in 1995, to provide pricing and analytics tools for foreign exchange options. In 2001, broker GFI acquired the business, which was by then the leading provider in the space. The brand also remained intact when BGC completed a majority stake buy of GFI in March 2015, but in July this year, the company underwent a rebrand following the acquisition of analytics provider Kalahari.

The new brand, kACE, covers all FENICS and Kalahari products, although the market data business will continue to be known as FENICS Market Data. All of these businesses sit under FENICS Software Limited, which, in turn, comes under a new group entity called FENICS.

“In July this year, we underwent a rebranding exercise as part of our acquisition of the Kalahari business with all products delivered by FENICS Software and Kalahari being renamed under the kACE brand, including the award-winning FENICS Pro and FENICS TS solutions,” says Richard Brunt, managing director of FENICS Software Limited.

The company has been voted the winner of the Best Vendor for Risk Management/Options Pricing Software category at the 2018 FX Week Best Banks Awards.

Brunt previously told FX Week that the company is looking to add additional asset classes, as it builds on the electronic pricing and distribution capabilities of products such as Fenics Trading Solutions, which has seen a big take-up from regional banks, which needed a venue-agnostic system to manage liquidity for market-making and price distribution.

We see a renewed focus on the quantitative side and modelling from our clients globally, driven by their desire to further automate workflow
Richard Brunt, FENICS Software Limited

“With the Kalahari acquisition, we expanded our product coverage beyond FX options to include linear FX. This broadening of asset-class coverage is an ongoing strategy, and will include leveraging existing ‘in-house’ analytics capabilities and products used by the wider BGC group, which rolled into the kACE product suite,” Brunt says.

The business now aims to become the market-leading multi-asset solutions provider for pricing analytics, price distribution, deal capture and middleware connectivity, with solutions for pre-trade analysis, risk management, automated client distribution and post-trade services.

Asian focus

The business experienced 35% growth in 2017, with a large portion of demand originating from Asia, where the dealer landscape is much less concentrated than in other regions, which accounts for 50% of the firm’s clients.

Mifid II was a big driver of automation, says John Crisp, director of product group at kACE, as best execution and auditability requirements helped market participants towards the electronification of pricing and distribution processes.

“We see a renewed focus on the quantitative side and modelling from our clients globally, driven by their desire to further automate workflow in quoting customers,” says Crisp.

After a record year in 2017, and a major rebrand this year, the focus will return to adding additional asset classes, as well as continuing to build on core strengths.

“We will continue the investment in the products through direct investment, as well as partnerships and acquisitions, to grow our asset-class coverage and penetration,” says Brunt. “We had a record third quarter in sales and we see that continuing in the New Year. Our outlook for 2019 is very positive.”


Interviews with the 2018 FX Week Best Banks Awards winners


JP Morgan

Best Bank Overall for Foreign Exchange Dealing

Best Bank for FX for Banks

Best Bank for FX for Investors

Best Bank for Spot FX

Best Bank for FX Forwards

Best Bank for EUR/USD

Best Bank for USD/JPY

Best Bank for EUR/JPY

Best Bank for E-Trading



Best Bank for FX for Corporates

Best Bank for Currency Options

Best Bank for Structured Products

Best Bank for FX Prime Brokerage

Best Bank for FX in North America

Best Bank for Emerging European, Middle Eastern and African Currencies

Best Bank for FX Research and Strategy



Best Bank for FX in Asia-Pacific

Best Bank for Renminbi

Best Bank for Emerging Asian Currencies


Deutsche Bank

Best Bank for FX in the Eurozone



Best Bank for Australian Dollar



Best Bank for GBP/USD

Best Bank for EUR/GBP

Best Bank for FX in London



Best Bank for Swiss Franc


NatWest Markets

Best Bank for FX Post-Trade Services



Best Professional e-Trading Venue

Best Vendor for Dealing Technology



Best Broker for Forward FX

Best Broker for Emerging Markets FX



Best FX Clearing House



Best Broker for Spot FX



Best Market Data Provider for FX


Danske Bank

Best Bank for Scandinavian Currencies


Standard Bank

Best Bank for South African Rand

Best Bank for African Currencies excluding ZAR


BMO Capital Markets

Best Bank for Canadian Dollar


Banco Santander

Best Bank for Emerging Latin American Currencies



Best Vendor for Risk Management/Options Pricing Software


Saxo Bank

Best Prime-of-Prime House


BGC (no interview)

Best Broker for Currency Options

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