2024 Categories & Nominees

Best Alternative Data Provider

The winner in this category will be a provider of alternative data feeds and data from unconventional sources. The provider must demonstrate excellence in meeting the non-mainstream, unstructured data needs of financial services firms including hedge funds, pension funds, and mutual funds. The types of data that fit into this category encompass information offerings for cutting-edge derivatives, ESG-based investment strategies, voluntary carbon credit (VCC) investing, social media interactions, satellite imagery, and digital asset transactions.

Best Buy-Side Collateral Management Solution

Optimizing collateral management has come into sharp focus for many buy-side firms especially as they have had to revamp their infrastructures to meet new regulatory regimes. Advances via distributed ledger technology (DLT) and artificial intelligence (A.I.) are easing workflows and compliance burdens. This award honors the provider, consultant, or internal IT organization that has been the most effective in helping buy-side operations staff achieve higher levels of internal efficiency in the oversight of collateral.

Best Buy-Side Operation Solution

This award recognizes the provider that offers buy-side firms a comprehensive set of solutions for securities operations that helps firms achieve operational excellence. The solution set can be deployed onsite, use cloud computing technology, be completely outsourced, or use a combination of these deployment methods. The award is meant to reward the provider whose ambitious, enterprise-wide offerings have exceeded expectations.

Best Client Reporting Solution

This award honors the provider that has advanced the complex process of client reporting. The winner will demonstrate that it has improved the customization, look, and feel, and delivery of reports for many kinds of clients and portfolios. The award also recognizes progress in automating reports, managing source data, monitoring the status of productions, and clarity in performance reporting.

Best Cloud-Native Computing Initiative

For 2023, this award category focuses on the next chapter in cloud computing – cloud-native advances that are paving the way for digital transformations and other evolutionary strategies. This category is open to managed service and cloud-native solutions providers, and to companies that offer infrastructure-as-a-service (IaaS); platform-as-as-service (PaaS); and software-as-a-service (SaaS) implementations.

Best Compliance Solution

This award is for the solution that delivers a distinguished offering in a specialized area, designed to help meet a critical compliance need. The winning supplier must demonstrate an ability to keep pace with an evolving industry and show a level of achievement in improving their clients’ needs to meet obligations and optimize their operations. Solutions eligible for nomination can be from any niche area of compliance for equities, fixed income, and derivative instruments. In addition, solutions that focus on relevant aspects of regulatory, legal, data, social, and IT compliance are also eligible.

Best Corporate Actions Service Provider

Corporate actions processing continues to advance and this award spotlights the provider that has incorporated industry standards, advanced automation, data management, ESG data, and emerging technologies. The winner in this category will have helped its clients move closer to automation and streamlined processing.

Best Cutting-Edge Solution

This award recognizes the industry participant that has successfully developed innovative financial technology solutions for middle- and back-office post-trade operations. Eligible areas of consideration include advanced cloud-native services, hybrids of legacy and cutting-edge IT, a groundbreaking offering that eliminates manual processes, and new Ops-focused products that break the mold.

Best Data Management Solution

Managing data to get the most out of it for securities operations is an ongoing challenge for all financial services firms. Data that is optimized will yield multiple benefits for securities operations and beyond. This honor is for the provider that has demonstrated that it can help firms derive the most value from their clean data and pave the way for greater advancements to come.

Best Data Provider

The winner in this category offers clients the most comprehensive global coverage in a timely manner and via a user-friendly, consolidated view. The top provider in this category has a complete offering that lowers operational risks for clients.

Best Disruptive Solution

Disruptive technologies are new realities for financial services firms participating in securities markets. Distributed ledgers, A.I.-based solutions such as machine learning and natural language advances, big data projects, open-source efforts, application programming interface (API) links, and quantum computing are solving old problems in a new more complete way and becoming part of the post-trade IT landscape. This award highlights the solution that helps firms leap forward in their technology journeys rather than make incremental changes that maintain the status quo.

Best Generative A.I. Solution

Generative artificial intelligence (gen A.I.) has made a big splash in the securities industry and many firms and providers are exploring how to apply this game-changing technology to data, analytics, accounting, databases, cloud services, modeling, and operations for wealth and asset management, investment banking, and securities transactions. Industry participants are also applying gen A.I. to unstructured data, client engagements, corporate actions, and manual tasks and systems. The winner in this category must demonstrate how its gen A.I. solution greatly improved a key operation for financial institutions or led to a breakthrough.

Best Innovation in a Clearing and Settlement Solution

The voters will be rewarding the solution provider that has achieved a new level of excellence via innovation for transaction clearing and settlement operations, including assistance with the move to shorter, T+1 settlement. The competition is open to established consultancies and providers, and newcomers. The winning provider must facilitate groundbreaking solutions for incumbent and cutting-edge financial instruments, especially via disruptive and emerging technologies, workflows, and collaborative efforts.

Best Middle-Office Solution

The middle office plays an important role in optimizing operations across the enterprise. The winner in this category will be chosen from among the ranks of middle-office operations providers that offer IT resource management services, risk management, risk data analytics, client and security master database support, and services for the coding, configuration, and verification of trades.

Best Middle-to-Back-Office Integration Solution

The middle and back-offices are no longer autonomous groups existing independently of each other. They are linked by multiple operations serving multiple assets. This award will spotlight the Ops offering that helps firm facilitate more efficient integration between middle- and back-office applications, particularly IT innovations that eliminate manual systems, legacy solutions and pave the way for operational efficiency.

Best Operational Risk Management Solution

Operational risk permeates everything that a financial services firm does, including securities trading and all the steps needed to complete a transaction. This award will go to the provider that has shown the most creativity in mitigating operational risk whether it is related to onboarding and KYC challenges, reputational concerns, margining and collateral management woes, data mismanagement, disaster recovery/business continuity, corporate governance, and other issues that may hamper operations.

Best Outsourcing Provider

Outsourcing plays a key role for many facets of securities operations. This category honors the provider that offers valuable, reliable, cost-effective and efficient outsourced services to the buy side. The winner in this category will be honored for offering the highest levels of reliability, security and adaptability, and for demonstrating capabilities for rapid implementations and flexible consumer models.

Best Performance Measurement System

This category spotlights the performance measurement solution provider that offers systems for exemplary calculation of returns for portfolios (benchmarks and composites); calculation of attribution effects for equity and fixed-income portfolios; and calculation of ex-post risk, absolute and relative. This award also acknowledges the efforts that industry participants are making to advance performance measurement via the embrace of ESG concerns among investors and emerging disruptive technologies.

Best Product Innovation by an Established Provider

This category is open to established providers that have released a brand-new offering, or achieved a breakthrough, major overhaul, or completed significant advances for an existing offering that provides an unprecedented advantage to clients. The new functions can include greater integration via new application programming interfaces (APIs) and new features that facilitate greater system performance and other new benefits for securities operations.

Best Professional Services Provider

This award honors the provider that offered cost-effective, customized support for their clients in 2023. Nominees in this category should have supplied exemplary business management plans that facilitated seamless, efficient transitions to both remote and/or onsite professional services support. The category is open to IT systems, services, and software providers, and to third-party companies that specialize in offering professional services.

Best Reconciliation Solution

Reconciliation for securities operations has been the focus of a lot of energy over the past five years. The result is a wider range of opportunities available for firms looking for effective solutions. This category is an opportunity for the industry to reward the solution provider offering an innovative approach that yields great results and support, and helps firms reallocate resources to their advantage.

Best RegTech Solution

Once firms have optimized their internal compliance ecosystems, they often need the support of regulatory technology providers. The RegTech providers considered for this category have demonstrated that they can help firms efficiently meet the external reporting and other demands of regulators, anti-money laundering requirements, and the latest domestic and international economic sanctions of governmental authorities. Suppliers that help participants with compliance in the listed, over-the-counter (OTC), and non-cleared derivatives markets are also eligible for this honor.

Best Regulatory Reporting Solution

Keeping up with regulatory reporting requirements is an ongoing burden for financial services firms that is only going to become more challenging. Automating processes across an enterprise is daunting for firms, and the industry is exploring a variety of models to support regulatory technology (RegTech). The surge in ESG-based investing has also created a new area of concern for firms that need to prove to investors they are not engaged in greenwashing. This award honors the solutions provider that has made a commitment to advancing data integrity and data governance, ending repetitive processes, and streamlining reporting across the enterprise and to regulators.

Best Sell-Side Collateral Management Solution

The collateral management complex involves many participants including sell-side firms that must work closely in conjunction with counterparties. This award recognizes the accomplishments of a provider, consultancy, industry organization, or internal IT group that has made great strides in helping sell-side operations maximize their collateral management operations via advances to the workflow, IT systems, and counterparty interactions.

Best Solution for T+1 Transition

North American firms have been using a variety of third-party solutions and/or services as they transition their securities operations to shorter, trading day plus one (T+1) settlement cycles. This award will bring the focus to the third-party provider that securities firms have found to be the best at helping them on the road to T+1. The winning solution will have helped firms manage the key challenges inherent in the shift to T+1 and the after-effects of such a move.

Best Surveillance & Recovery System

Financial crimes against financial institutions are on the rise and firms are in battle array on many fronts. To help firms fight back, providers have been advancing surveillance solutions to uncover evidence of internal and external acts of fraud, insider trading, sanctions violations, terrorist financing, and complex forms of financial corruption. This award will spotlight software, services, systems, and advances in surveillance and recovery that help firms protect themselves from danger and reputational damage.

Best T+1 Strategic Partner

The move to shorter, trading day plus one (T+1) settlement has many moving parts and will cause an overhaul of securities operations as we know them. One of the key elements of a successful transition to T+1 settlement will likely include the guidance of a consultancy, advisory, or professional services firm. This award will spotlight the exceptional service offering that helped securities firms cross the line to T+1 settlement.

FinTech Person of the Year

This award will recognize a behind-the-scenes individual who has been highly effective in advancing a major financial technology issue impacting the industry. The person to be honored has devoted much time and effort toward proliferating a new standard, a key technology initiative, a regulatory-related project or a technology breakthrough that benefits the industry. The winner in this category must show that he or she can work across the aisle with business executives and staff.

Ops Businessperson of the Year

This award honors an executive-level individual who has advanced the cause of financial technology innovation from the business side of the aisle. The winner of this award can be from a solutions provider, an end-user firm, or related consultancy committed to improving securities operations for financial services firms. The winner must demonstrate that he or she has effectively worked with IT managers and operations staff.

Service Provider of the Year

The Service Provider of the Year will be celebrated for advancing the delivery of service, extraordinary client support, new synergies with key market participants and extraordinary leadership in the industry. The winner in this category must be able to show that it boosted the fortunes of its clients.

Software Solution of the Year

This award will recognize the software application or software system that over the past year has broken new ground in a major area of securities operations. This category is open to technology providers, industry organizations and financial services firms that are fully engaged in the advancement of operations software. The winning solution must have clear business benefits.

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