Kepler Cheuvreux taps Adaptive for new execution equities platform

Rick Steves

KCx, Kepler Cheuvreux’s execution division, has partnered with trading technology firm Adaptive Financial Consulting to create a new event-driven trading system based on Aeron and its own Hydra technology.

Adaptive is helping KCx build its new execution equities platform

The plan is to build a front-office execution equities platform that allows clients to observe and manage KCx’s advanced execution flow through a single interface, offering new functionality and simplifying workflows.

Kepler Cheuvreux is a Paris-headquartered financial services company specializing in research, execution, advisory, and asset management services.

KCx wants to improve execution performance

Kepler Cheuvreux Execution Services (KCx) provides a first-class trading platform with a global team of experienced High Touch, Low Touch, and Portfolio Sales Traders and Traders across 13 offices in Europe and the US. The platform includes a full suite of liquidity-seeking and schedule-driven algorithms, advanced Transaction Cost Analysis software incorporating AI and Machine Learning techniques, and experienced execution consultants who assist in trader alpha preservation, all supported by a robust Back and Middle Office for support and efficient settlement.

A multi-year strategic investment by Kepler Cheuvreux in the Electronic Trading offering has been underway since 2020, with the intention to achieve improved execution performance at the agency-only, independent European broker with proprietarily developed Algo strategies.

The new system will be based on KCx’s algorithmic trading capabilities by connecting its global equities trading ecosystem through a new sequencer-based technical architecture. The development of KCx’s new trading system marks the completion of the first phase of a wider innovation initiative to build bespoke, highly scalable front-office systems to complement the firm’s existing trading technology across asset classes.

The new system was built using Adaptive’s Hydra

Anvar Karimson, Chief Technology Officer, Kepler Cheuvreux, said: “At KCx, we pride ourselves on the quality of our execution that allows our clients to seize opportunities in challenging markets. As part of phase 1, to ensure our clients can use our algorithms to their full potential, we wanted to build a new system that matches their sophistication and allows them to use our services in new, exciting ways. Working closely with Adaptive, we are realising our vision of a high-performance, resilient front office equities system that has the potential to scale and adapt as we meet the changing needs of institutions.”

As well as working hand-in-hand with KCx to design and build its new architecture and user interface (UI), the new system was built using Hydra, Adaptive’s proprietary development technology that significantly accelerates and simplifies the creation of complex real-time trading systems.

Matt Barrett, CEO of Adaptive, said: “Delivering a high-performance, resilient trading system on a global scale in a short timescale for a leading broker is a significant achievement. We are delighted to collaborate with KCx leveraging their extensive technical knowledge and advanced algorithms, and our Hydra technology to build an event-driven equities trading system from the ground up. Hydra’s architecture is ideally suited for the project and gives the firm strong foundations to develop new capabilities across asset classes, clients and trade types.”

Chris McConville, Global Head of Execution Services and Trading, KCx, said: “We are excited to partner with Adaptive to help us create our NextGen execution platform. This extensive project involves upgrades to nearly every aspect of our execution infrastructure, from algo monitoring tools and order management systems (OMS) to execution management systems (EMS), transaction cost analysis (TCA), portfolio analysis, IOI management, and complete allocation, booking, and settlement processes. The fully sequenced system ensures a comprehensive record of events across all asset classes. Designed to meet the unique needs and preferences of each client, we are confident in our ability to innovate, and respond with agility.”

The new event-driven trading system is being built on a hybrid tech stack that can run on-premises or, in future, in the cloud. The hybrid development of the system, using the Amazon Web Services, Inc. (AWS) cloud, allows for remote functional testing to ensure that performance matches the expectations of clients at time of launch.

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