CQG Announces New Continuum Enterprise Solution

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MarketsWiki Exclusive: CQG Enables Innovators with Continuum Enterprise Solutions

CQG announced the creation of Continuum, a new division within the organization that is dedicated to delivering enterprise software solutions. Going beyond the market data and spreading capabilities CQG is known for, they address exchange connectivity, trade execution and time to market needs for fixed income and futures traders with their new suite of products. Mike Glista, who heads up this new division of CQG, talked with MarketsWiki’s Jessica Titlebaum to discuss the story behind Continuum, who they are looking to help and how their technology choices benefit the end users.

Q. What is the story behind Continuum?

A. The project is called ‘Enabling the Innovators’. We had in mind the market participants that are innovators with their own software. We aimed to leverage our international network and global trading capabilities to provide our clients with more and easily accessible market options. Previously, CQG clients couldn’t get data out or data in using our software. Our client’s trading options revolved around the Exchanges CQG had connected to.

Q. Enabling the Innovators? I like that.

A. With our global presence, the innovator who has already written to the CME can take that same application or black box and place it around the globe for connectivity to Eurex or the Singapore Exchange without extra work.

We also provide a shorter time to market with our proprietary libraries. Innovators might not want to write everything from scratch, so they can pick and choose what library they want and put it into their particular application. This also allows innovators to avoid the huge cost of developing a trading front end.

Q. Who are you targeting with this suite of products?

A. We are looking at software vendors who want more trading capabilities, streamlined data feeds or connectivity to additional exchanges. Also, there may be someone who needs real-time data to power their back office application or post trade modules. This is the reason we used FIX/FAST for the market data feeds. We used FIX 4.2 for the people trading into us.

Q. Can you tell me about the benefits of using FIX/FAST Direct?

A. Historically, FIX has not been the most efficient way to deliver data. Even the CME switched to FIX/FAST a few years ago with a multi-cast on the market data side. What we did was take whatever connectivity method there was and created a FIX/FAST multi-cast type of feed so individuals can connect to an exchange directly and take advantage of co-location even if they aren’t FIX/FAST compliant. Also, since FIX/FAST data connections can achieve economies of scale, it is easier and more cost effective for a customer who wants to directly connect to additional exchanges because we are already connected to most global trading destinations. We are the intermediary and will redistribute the exchange data for less than the original fee.

Q. You brought up the CME, what other exchanges are most asked about?

A. It depends on what part of the world a market participant is in. The hotspot of course is Asia. The US companies want Asian access, the Asian companies that have been around for a while want access to Europe, and European companies want access to Asia and the U.S. What clients are seeing is that this suite of products is an easy, quick and efficient way to make their software a global application.

Q. Who has already signed on?

A. We have a few companies that are already live in production and moving forward with their business plans using Continuum products. Guys like DTN -ProphetX, Wave 59 Technologies and QST in America use this software. ADVFN, a UK-based company, is also signed on.

Q. When did you start this initiative?

About two years ago we started opening up data APIs and delivering exchange data through our integrated clients. To ensure that this project got the focus and attention it deserved, we created Continuum, which is a division at CQG. We have a few people in Chicago and London who will be transitioning over to this new division and dedicated to this suite of products. We have plans to expand the division into Asia too.

Q. You are responsible for heading the Continuum division. What are the challenges you see in this role?

A. CQG delivers high quality products, and the company has the same high expectations for Continuum. It will be challenging to build Continuum so that it has the same reputation as CQG. Also, in today’s market it is very difficult to get people to change their ways. I look forward to the challenge of trying to get participants to see the markets from a different perspective.