Top 25 European Cloud Computing Rising Stars: OpenGamma

OpenGamma Combines Open Source and Cloud Computing in Innovative Platform

OpenGamma is a good example how Cloud Computing changed the way entrepreneurs and software vendors are looking for new software and technology solutions. Kirk Wylie, Elaine McLeod and Jim Moores founded OpenGamma in 2009 and rumors were a new London-based technology start-up is entering financial services market. Traditionally, London hosts many financial companies and it was not quite unexpected that a newcompany introduced its services in a lucrative market such as financial industry. The company, however, offered a different approach in a historically conservative industry field whose members acknowledged that a new and innovative business model is more than welcome.

The company’s flagship product is its OpenGamma Platform, offering customers possibility to take  advantage of Cloud Computing and Software as a Service (SaaS). The system can be deployed in-house or to be hosted as a SaaS. Another option is to use the product in a model allowing some components to run in a customer’s data center while others are provided as a service.

Actually, OpenGamma is developing a financial analytics and risk management platform aimed at users who actively trade in global financial markets. Another advantage offered by the company is that the platform is Open Source, so it is largely customizable and designed to allow external developers modify its source code.

The platform is accessible via web browser, while allowing customers to get batch risk reports in Excel and PDF formats. Additionally, OpenGamma is designed to use customer provided reference data or industry standard one. Encrypted data storage and transfer is a functionality that should be, and is, incorporated in the platform.

OpenGamma features also full dependency graph construction and introspection, end-user modifiable calculations, and advanced user interfaces using web technologies, the company web site reads. An Open Source solution might look tricky and many companies avoid using such software platforms for various reasons although many governments around the globe adopted such software at highest government level. OpenGamma makes a step further, offering open architecture that allows customers to integrate their existing systems with the one delivered by the company. OpenGamma Platform boasts its completely open software nature which is not a widespread solution but certainly is an interesting one for those who are deeply involved in the ever growing sector of financial services.

Unsurprisingly, the company managed to secure two rounds of funding in the past two years with Accel Partners leading a Series A funding in 2009. FirstMark Capital provided a Series B funding a couple of years later, while Accel Partners participated in the round as a return investor.

The global economic crisis was in part a result of the financial system’s inability to manage real-time risk across interconnected asset classes and geographic regions. For our global economy to recover the trust and confidence it has lost, it must change the way risk is measured and managed, and OpenGamma provides the only platform that can achieve this critical goal,” Lawrence D. Lenihan, Founder and Managing Director at FirstMark, commented in a press release.

OpenGamma wants to utilize the funding for establishing strategic alliances within global markets and expanding its R&D department. It will have to compete with many well established software vendors for its place under the sun although some of them already lost momentum for various reasons.

The complexity of the financial markets, stronger corporate governance and more regulatory requirements has IT departments seeking a technically strong and architecturally modern analytical platform that can easily integrate siloed, third-party applications with other major financial components – with the flexibility to fix source code in real-time,” Kirk Wylie, founder and CEO of OpenGamma, said in a company press release after the Series B funding.

Open source and Cloud Computing are very similar to some extent, and OpenGamma entered a very specific market niche not easy to develop but full of prospect customers. The company sets foot in a market in which one million questions are asked daily, hence one should expect they are well prepared to compete with mastodons they will face while trying to grab a respectable market share.

By Kiril Kirilov

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