ARQA Technologies in 2020
2020 marks the 20th anniversary of ARQA Technologies. The company celebrated this event as a distinguished IT vendor with considerable experience and substantial expertise in the IT industry for financial markets. The past year was filled with new projects and marked with dynamic development of the company’s core products — QUIK and QORT software solutions.
In 2020, 13 organizations including banks, exchanges, investment and asset management companies became new clients of ARQA Technologies. Eight of them implemented QUIK software, and five — solutions based on the QORT software platform.
It should be noted that most software installations for clients this year have been performed remotely.
Exchange and client projects
For the last few years, ARQA Technologies has been actively cooperating with exchanges from neighboring countries, and the past year was no exception.
At the beginning of the year, QUIK software was installed as a key part (matching core) of the Armenia Securities Exchange’s (AMX) technological platform.
Also, QUIK was successfully integrated with the NASDAQ Matching Engine system which is used by the Astana International Exchange (AIX) as the core technology. This integration enabled ARQA Technologies to develop the Astana International Exchange trading interface which allows market participants to trade shares and bonds in the AIX trading system.
ARQA Technologies traditionally supports all main infrastructural innovations on the Moscow Exchange. Last year, the exchange released more than 10 updated versions of trading systems of Securities, FX, and Derivatives markets with new trading boards, instrument classes, order types, transmission of additional parameters, trading access to stocks of foreign issuers via the Moscow Exchange Securities Market trading interface. These changes made in the Moscow Exchange trading systems were introduced into all related company’s products.
The line of interfaces to the Moscow Exchange was also supplemented with a new Moscow Exchange ISS information interface. It serves for transmitting data to the QUIK server from the exchange’s Informational & Statistical Server (ISS) containing data on indicative risk rates which can be used by trading participants to comply with the Bank of Russia requirements for broker securities transactions at clients’ expense (Ordinance 4928-U dated 8 October 2018).
Besides that, the company developed a new trading interface for connection to the Russian securities market of the Saint-Petersburg Exchange.
One of the company’s major clients, Sberbank, decided to expand the functionality of the Sberbank Markets electronic trading system developed with ARQA Technologies’ direct participation, via direct gateway connection of other organizations’ QUIK servers by means of the FIX protocol. As part of this project, the SB Markets special program interface was released which serves for delivery of quotes and execution of currency transactions on the FX market of Sberbank Markets platform via QUIK servers of third party brokers.
In 2020, the whole line of QUIK server modules was expanded. In addition to already mentioned software, there are the following new ones:
- News and market data interfaces
ICE Data Services market data interface — it provides access to trading data of international venues delivered from the ICE Consolidated Feed.
- Server modules
- Infrastructure solutions
Investment recommendations module — it serves for storing and sending the broker’s investment recommendations on execution of trading operations with specified instruments.
Directory Storage and Distribution module — which is a single centralized storage of information about asset types, instruments, par values, ACI and calendars, received from external sources.
Bookbuilding module — it serves for preliminary collecting of orders from clients to participate in public and nonpublic placements and their processing by the broker.
Services Provided by Data Centers
Taking into consideration the clients’ demand for the use of QUIK platform as a service (SaaS), ARQA Technologies continued the development of software solutions provided as a service. Last year, one of the service modules in great demand — Non-Trade Instructions module — became available for clients as a service.
Last year, 11 updated versions of the QUIK workstation were released with further ergonomic improvements of the terminal. In particular, optimization steps were made for settings in the client’s workstation, order entry functionality, work with tables and script execution as well as transmission of new parameters, etc.
A number of modifications were made in web and mobile QUIK terminals.
The webQUIK workstation supported the service which sends investment recommendations from a broker to a client with a possibility to execute trading operations. The mobile version of the webQUIK interface became more intuitive and user-friendly.
Last year, the processing speed of QORT based products was increased by means of the simultaneous processing of requests from users performed by certain system components.
The line of news and market data modules was supplemented with the Module of integration with API NSD which allows automatic import of reference data on issuers, securities serviced and no longer serviced in NSD, and on corporate events from the NSD database to the system by using API NSD web-services. This module is available for backQORT, midQORT, and capQORT products.
Besides that, it became possible to integrate QORT with a general corporate monitoring system. For this purpose, a universal program interface (API) was developed which allows connecting QORT to various monitoring systems like Zabbix.
Automated back-office backQORT
A large proportion of improvements made in backQORT related to expanded features for integration between the system and the client’s personal account, CRM, and other external applications, as well as to report generation.
Besides data exchange, the improvement of the Web-services integration module’s functionality allowed calling internal QORT procedures from external applications and uploading limits to QUIK for a new client. The capabilities of this module were enlarged by the Data model extension module which allows users to create new tables and additional fields in existing backQORT tables.
Middle-office of an asset management company capQORT
The changes made in capQORT related to the trading functionality. The user terminal of capQORT was supplemented with the Level2Quotes table which allows generating orders with prefilled price parameters from the Level2Quotes table. It also became possible to execute trades with currency pairs without conversion into Russian rubles. Among the innovations in capQORT, the development of a new report should be mentioned which displays an unrealized profit and a yield to maturity.
In the past year, ARQA Technologies took part in technological international and Russian conferences: EMEA Trading Conference 2020 (London), IDX Virtual 2020 (London), NAUFOR Collective Investment Market (Moscow). A virtual format of the events was a feature of the year, and it was certainly new experience for all the participants.
Also, the company together with the Interfax Group training center and RU Data organized a webinar ‘Regulatory Requirements for Banks and non-credit financial institutions 2020 and their automation by using data from RU Data in QORT products by ARQA Technologies’.
The annual seminar held in Moscow was of great interest for clients and partners of ARQA Technologies. The seminar was dedicated to the twentieth anniversary of the company and attended by about 350 participants from 105 Russian and foreign companies.
Last year, the company acted as a technological partner of the Invest Trial competition of the Moscow Exchange for novice exchange traders and gave an award to the winner of a special nomination — for the maximum turnover on the Securities market. A special prize, Apple Watch Sport, was raffled off during the prizegiving ceremony.