return on technology

Unmet Need: Benchmarking Returns on FinTech Investments (w/ Webinar Playback)

Having a hunch is one thing. Quantifying that hunch is another thing entirely. Since its launch, Alphacution's primary hunch - and a factor that drives its mission - has been that measuring the impact of information technology investments within the financial services ecosystem is 1) super important, and 2) not something that firms currently do very often. Of course, we are  nearly 2 years into an ambitious modeling and framework development exercise based on far more than hunches. There has been a steady flow of evidence and support. Early adoption and consumption of our output by marquee clients and a growing network of prospects, seasoned advisors and friends provides ongoing resources and intellectual nourishment to keep building. However, on the back of our first webinar - hosted by partner, Aite Group - it was gratifying to ask direct questions to and receive direct answers from a broad and diverse audience. While helping to further galvanize the initial hypothesis, this evidence also speaks clearly to the vast spectrum of players in the financial services ecosystem who potentially [...]

By | 2017-04-28T10:00:09+00:00 April 18th, 2017|Alphacution Feed|

Financial Technology Impacts: YOU are in Darkness – And, THIS is a Flashlight.

Disclaimer: Opinions and a grain or two of salty language contained herein are solely those of the author. Save your time. Just, pick up the flashlight now. Ok. Here's some bait: Chances are quite high that you are searching for answers in the darkness (amidst the chaos). And the tools that you have at your disposal - typically in the form of 5,000 or 10,000 word salads with few pictures and fewer numbers from a "pedigreed" purveyor of guidance - actually do not emit much light. The good news is that you need not toil in darkness any longer. There is a flashlight at your disposal - and, unlike a normal flashlight, this one is designed to grow in luminosity and enhance your enlightenment at the same time. Now, you can continue to deny that this is your reality - and continue as you are - or, you can check out the flashlight. Still skeptical? Here's more of the pitch: I have been successfully solving complex puzzles for a very long time. The puzzle that fascinates me and tickles my curiosity most right [...]

By | 2017-04-28T09:52:23+00:00 March 15th, 2017|Alphacution Feed|

Top Hedge Funds: AUM per Employee = Trading Strategy?

We have been playing with some new equations; looking to see if anything interesting can be learned from benchmarking assets per employee across various firms. (It turns out that adding this analytic to our suite of other "per employee" metrics yields significant insights.) In the figure below, we took the top 10 hedge funds ranked by assets under management (AUM) and then re-ranked that list by AUM per employee. We also tossed in Virtu Financial and KCG (Getco) for giggles - and to test the extremes. Notice anything interesting? Based on what you might know about these trading companies, how would you label the X-axis? Here's some additional data to consider: The correlation between assets and headcount is not perfect by any stretch, but it is signal-worthy. Also, this trick works best on mature, ongoing firms whose operations and business are relatively consistent. Headcount level doesn't seem to matter. Albeit at the extremes of tradings firms, Virtu Financial generated nearly US$800 million in revenue (2015) with 148 employees - so [...]

By | 2017-02-06T20:34:57+00:00 December 14th, 2016|Alphacution Feed|

Feed Your Cognitive Taste Buds: Collaboration Will Expedite Validation

As you gorge yourself on the latest curated fire hose of content today, this post may waft onto your cognitive taste buds like a shameless plug. Fine. Like a herd of squirrels, here comes the next and the next and the next tweet anyways, just right for your canine attention span. It's all good, and no hard feelings. We will aspire to catch you with the next tidbit or on a different modality... But for those of you who care to pause and consider the deeper value here  - I offer this reminder and some inside baseball for your own creative purposes: In parallel with the mission to deliver uncommon and data-driven intelligence for the financial services (FSI) ecosystem, Alphacution was also founded to eat at its own kitchen - which is a practice that we have discovered over many years is rarely the case with research and advisory platforms. (By the way, not pointing any fingers - its not necessarily anyone's fault. Convention is a gravitational bitch.) Translation: If [...]

By | 2016-12-10T21:28:28+00:00 October 14th, 2016|Alphacution Feed, News, Press|

#Launchpad: Introducing the New Alphacution Website and Content

Our team has largely been on hiatus for the past couple months developing several new assets, including most notably our new Alphacution "content storage, distribution and promotion application" - er - website, and a bunch of new content to go in it which begins to showcase our research methodologies and initial modeling output. For the attention-deficit crowd (and those who are not already reading this on the site), you can skip the following shout-outs and contextual comments by hopping to www.alphacution.com now. In addition to our Feed section (for commentaries, videos, press coverage and company news), you will find a lot of "freemium" content accessible in the Open Exhibits Library and the Document Library. A short - and FREE - registration process will open access to those components and add your details to our newsletter distribution list. Please don't skip that part - and for extra credit, send us your feedback (info@alphacution.com) no matter the temperature... For the rest of you, here's some of the context behind these latest developments: [...]

By | 2016-12-10T20:40:44+00:00 July 19th, 2016|Alphacution Feed|

Investing in #Transformation: What’s the ROI? | Numerix Video Blog Series

Understanding FinTech #Transformation: In this FIFTH of a five part video blog series Jim Jockle, CMO of Numerix sits down with Paul Rowady, Director of Research at Alphacution to discuss the concept of #Transformation. Jim and Paul provide their perspectives on the latest examples of transformation they’re observing in the financial services industry specifically around the cross section of IT spending trends, software vs hardware investment, human capital expense, IT infrastructure, data management and risk analytics innovations. The five segments cover: Defining #Transformation within Financial Services Quantifying #Transformation The Cost of #Transformation #Transformation and TCO: Hewlett Packard Enterprise & Deutsche Bank Case Study Investing in #Transformation: What’s the ROI? Video 5:  Investing in #Transformation: What’s the ROI? Jim: Hi welcome back to Numerix video blog, I’m your host Jim Jockle. Joining me today Paul Rowady, director of research at Alphacution. Hey Paul. Paul: Good to be here. Jim: We’ve been talking a lot about quantifying transformation. In our last segment we just talked about kind of a use case or [...]

By | 2016-12-10T21:32:11+00:00 May 17th, 2016|Alphacution Feed|

#Transformation and TCO | Numerix Video Blog Series

Understanding FinTech #Transformation:  In this FOURTH of a five part video blog series Jim Jockle, CMO of Numerix sits down with Paul Rowady, Director of Research at Alphacution to discuss the concept of #Transformation. Jim and Paul provide their perspectives on the latest examples of transformation they’re observing in the financial services industry specifically around the cross section of IT spending trends, software vs hardware investment, human capital expense, IT infrastructure, data management and risk analytics innovations. The five segments cover: Defining #Transformation within Financial Services Quantifying #Transformation The Cost of #Transformation #Transformation and TCO: Hewlett Packard Enterprise & Deutsche Bank Case Study Investing in #Transformation: What’s the ROI? Video 4: #Transformation and TCO: Hewlett Packard Enterprise & Deutsche Bank Case Study Jim Jockle (Host): Hi, welcome back to Numerix video blog, I'm your host Jim Jockle. Joining me today, Paul Rowady Director of Research at Alphacution. Hey Paul. Paul Rowady (Guest): Thanks, Jim. Good to be here. Jockle:  Continuing our conversation on quantifying transformation. So we’ve talked about the [...]

By | 2016-12-10T21:31:21+00:00 May 10th, 2016|Alphacution Feed|

#Technical Leverage: Can You Defy Your Scale?

If you believe the latest bromides, “IT strategy is business strategy”, then the success of any business is predicated on the deployment of technology – which includes the perpetual coordination of hardware, software, data and IT-related personnel (or human capital). Alphacution has applied this hypothesis to the financial services industry (FSI), first by modeling the technology-related spending of 51 of the largest global banks – arguably among the biggest buyers of technology in the FSI ecosystem – and then generating a series of benchmarks, analytics (many of which fall under the label, “T-Greeks”), visuals and narratives to describe how each market actor is performing in that ecosystem. Off the back of this first version of the Alphacution Composite Model, regional and global industry patterns also emerge, in addition to entity-specific metrics. Focus on Revenue per Employee One of the most fascinating pictures we have been able to generate in these early stages of the modeling is a normalized ranking of the sample banks by revenue per employee (RPE), where “employee” [...]

By | 2016-12-08T22:28:20+00:00 November 12th, 2015|Alphacution Feed|