Headstrong, the leading global IT services consultancy specializing in capital markets, announced today the release of iceFish, a new centralized clearing gateway which streamlines the clearing process, offering enhanced overall performance for connecting to clearing houses.
The iceFish product utilizes components-based, process-oriented framework allowing for true STP processing between the middle office and clearing houses.
"Financial institutions are facing transformational events in their derivatives clearing business. Firms are looking for enhanced performance, the ability to have a single gateway to connect to the different clearing houses and clear increasing volumes without a corresponding increase in their technology costs," said Prakash Neelakantan, vice president, Headstrong. "iceFish solves these issues through its component-based construction, and resulting performance, which is why the top clearing members for Listed and OTC derivatives have already started replacing their legacy platforms with iceFish."
The iceFish product is designed to address the operational inefficiencies of current clearing gateways through the use of pre-built components that handle both proprietary connectivity and the translation of data into proprietary formats, allowing for streamlined efficiency between the middle office and clearing house.
The majority of derivatives clearing gateways require clearing firms to spend resources on maintaining multiple systems due to the proprietary technologies and data formats used by clearing houses. The iceFish product allows clearing firms to focus on their core clearing operations by utilizing components that work with all proprietary connectivity and by supporting all clearing messages, including exercise and assignment, for Listed and OTC derivatives. iceFish manages data translation from proprietary formats to FIXML/FpML and vice versa, allowing the clearing firm to maintain all data in one, single format. Through an extensive set of data validation and transformation features, iceFish can manage complicated and complex data formats.
Evolving technologies and emerging intermediaries result in constant system upgrades and changes within the clearing process itself. Clearing gateways typically cannot react to these changes, leaving clearing firms lagging in the clearing process and handling issues with migration. As an Independent Software Vendor (ISV), Headstrong is able to build new components to support developing platforms and update iceFish accordingly.
iceFish also provides a single interface for integrating global platforms with a clearing firm's middle office through its ability to connect to all major European, Asian and US post-trade platforms.