ASX and Fidessa to offer smart trading workstation to Australian marketplace

'ASX Best' to use proven Fidessa technology to serve new regulatory market landscape

Sydney, 13th July 2011 – Fidessa group plc (LSE: FDSA), provider of high-performance trading, investment management and information solutions for the world’s financial community, has today announced that it has signed a new deal with the Australian Securities Exchange (ASX) to provide the software and technology infrastructure for a new breed of smart workstation to meet the needs of local participants in Australia's financial markets.

Regulatory changes introduced by the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) this year mean that the trading of equities in Australia will soon become multi-market. As such, trading will be subject to the same increased fragmentation and competition that has already been seen following similar initiatives in the US, Canada and Europe.

The new platform, ASX Best, will allow users to seamlessly and intelligently route flow between different lit and dark venues and to demonstrate to their customers and the regulator that they are truly offering best execution. Targeted at the Australian trading community, ASX Best will also include smart features, such as virtual markets, as well as comprehensive audit trail and reporting capabilities.

Steve Grob, Director of Group Strategy at Fidessa, comments: “We are delighted to be working with ASX on this project as we have been looking at the Australian market for some time and have already been successful in signing a number of clients for our enterprise solutions in the region. This project enables us to build on this success and demonstrates our commitment to the marketplace, whilst at the same time leveraging our global expertise and award-winning trading and market analytics solutions.”

The new platform will launch later this year and will be hosted in the ASX Australian Liquidity Centre – ASX's new co-location data centre facility – and will operate across its low-latency, high-capacity fibre network, ASX Net.

Peter Hiom, Deputy CEO of ASX, says: “ASX is continuing to develop new systems, services and functionality aimed at providing our participants with an expanded choice of flexible, efficient and low cost means to satisfy their customers’ needs. We have studied the impact of multi-market regulatory change, and its effect on market structure and trading, in many other places around the world. We see Fidessa as an essential part of our new positioning – alongside our other initiatives such as the commissioning of the new ASX Australian Liquidity Centre, providing low-latency, high-capacity co-location services, and our new order book, ASX PureMatch, for trading the top 300 ASX stocks and domestic ETF products. We chose Fidessa because of its experience in delivering intelligent trading solutions globally and for its ability to tailor a solution for the Australian marketplace.”

A key challenge of emerging multi-market, fragmented liquidity landscapes is ensuring that the right tools are in place to adhere to the new paradigm and take advantage of all the opportunities it presents. “One of the biggest lessons we have learnt from Europe, Canada and the US is that smart order routing means very different things in each and every new regulatory region,” adds Grob. “Whilst all our products share the same underlying architecture globally, the intelligence and workflow have to be adapted and fine-tuned for each location. The experience we have gained from having done this all over the world positions us as the ideal supplier of this technology for the Australian marketplace.”

In parallel, Fidessa will be setting up a local presence in Australia to support this initiative and further build on its recent successes with other local clients. Fidessa's proven solutions currently serve more than 26,000 users across 900 buy-side and sell-side clients worldwide. The Fidessa global FIX network connects 600 brokers with 2,400 buy-sides across 160 markets and handles more than US$800 billion of order flow monthly.

About ASX Group
ASX Group (ASX) is the overarching name for ASX Limited, the listed holding company with a range of services linked by a common purpose: to provide the core financial markets infrastructure necessary to meet the needs of a wide range of financial markets stakeholders and for a globally competitive and vibrant Australian economy.

ASX is a multi-asset class, vertically integrated exchange group, ranked one of the world’s top-10 largest by market capitalisation. Its activities span primary and secondary market services, central counterparty risk transfer, and transaction settlement for both the equities and fixed income markets. ASX functions as a market operator, clearing house, payments system facilitator and central securities depository. It oversees compliance with its operating rules, promotes standards of corporate governance among Australia’s listed companies and helps to educate retail investors. The domestic and international customer base of ASX is diverse and includes issuers of a variety of listed securities and financial products, investment and trading banks, fund managers, hedge funds, commodity trading advisers, brokers and proprietary traders, market data vendors and retail investors.

Underpinning ASX’s activities as a market operator is the quality of the monitoring and enforcement of compliance with its operating rules performed by its wholly-owned subsidiary, ASX Compliance. By providing its systems, processes and services reliably and fairly, ASX generates confidence in the markets that depend on its infrastructure.

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