Best FX aggregator – smartTrade Technologies

Asia FX Awards 2021


smartTrade Technologies’ customer-focused end-to-end approach secures the award for Best FX aggregator

Ludovic Blanquet, smartTrade
Ludovic Blanquet, smartTrade

smartTrade Technologies’ ongoing growth in the highly competitive and increasingly regulated Asia FX market is a function of its ability to offer regional banks exceptional individual products and services as part of a complete end-to-end solution. This solution is fully managed by smartTrade, but within operational parameters defined by each customer. 

“What really makes us stand out from our competitors is that if you are a regional bank with an original banking and corporate banking franchise, then we are a genuine one-stop shop for you, able to offer what you need out of the one box that we operate for you in the cloud, fully managed for you by us,” smartTrade Technologies’ chief product and strategic planning officer, Ludovic Blanquet, says. “If you are a bank that, since the global financial crisis [that began in 2007–08], has been suffering from a poor cost-to-income ratio, then we are a great way of reducing and improving that ratio without you having to abandon any of your presence in any market.”

One part of the company’s unique business proposition in Asia is that, unlike the common FX products’ pricing model used across the region that is centred on brokerage fees, smartTrade Technologies utilises a flat subscription-based pricing structure. This enables customers to not only benefit from effectively lower-price-per-transaction costs as the number of transactions increases, but also to benefit from continual improvements in smartTrade Technologies’ software and hardware offerings through its smartTrade Liquidity FX product.

“If an end-user customer has, say, three different vendors handling connectivity/aggregation, core pricing/client pricing and distribution, then that company has effectively taken on the responsibility to manage three different contracts, three integration strategies and to deal with any problems in each of these because each of the three vendors will be blaming the other one and not taking that responsibility,” says Blanquet. 

“The risks of this commonplace scenario are even more serious now in a world in which operational risk is becoming a real reputational risk that attracts much more attention from those regulators. So instead you need to go for one technology vendor that has all of the characteristics associated with the most modern technological operations, which is in the cloud, fully managed and with a subscription price, and that is us,” he adds.

None of this, of course, would mean much without a breadth and depth to FX liquidity that comes from a large number of providers across different business types, and this is precisely what smartTrade Technologies has built up in smartTrade LiquidityFX. It provides customisable, cross-asset aggregation for banks and brokers operating in the regional FX markets, supporting a combination of currencies, order types and price tiering through more than 130 connectors to banks, exchanges, electronic communication networks, non-banks and multibank platforms. These are seamlessly integrated into smartTrade LiquidityFX across multiple locations in Asia – with genuine co-location in London, New York and Tokyo – that delivers low latency in a full range of products including FX spot, forwards, swaps, precious metals, non-deliverable forwards, cryptocurrencies and money markets instruments, together with fixed income assets.

These achievements were singled out as well by the judges of the FX Markets Best FX aggregator award: “smartTrade Technologies has a multi-asset product, with proven diverse functionality, demonstrated by real examples of implementation in the Asia-Pacific region, with local on-the-ground helpdesk support in Singapore and Tokyo.” They added: “smartTrade has developed a unique value proposition in being the only FX aggregator developed in Asia, enabling customers in the region real-time access to developers and support staff. The company has focused on developing the key components of the FX offering on better technology, which offers greater performance in terms of system capacity and latency.” 

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