“I think it will be between five
and 10 years before it is commercial, but it will definitely happen,”
Pryke adds that the underlying
technology of bitcoin is useful and
the lab has learnt about the technology from all industries.
“This gives us a birds-eye view of
blockchain, with different perspectives and we can then look at its
possible applications,” he explained.
Before visiting the innovation lab,
I took a trip to BT’s offices to speak
with its global banking and financial markets team - Barry Webster,
head of strategy; Alexandra Foster,
head of insurance and post-trade
services; and Michael Cooper, chief
technology officer for BT Radianz
We met in one of BT’s demo
rooms, which was arranged to look
like a trading floor, with the latest
screens, telephones and tickers
produced by BT on show.
I imagine those on trading floors
will be quite familiar with BT’s
financial market solutions such as
BT Radianz and the technology it
produces for the trading world.
I was informed the BT Netrix
trading turret series is used by
one in three traders worldwide,
amounting to more than 68,000
traders in over 800 trading companies across 60 countries.
Powered by cloud technology,
the Netrix Hi Touch integrates
market information and specialist
apps with a touch screen that we
are all so familiar with today.
Swipe of the finger
Hi Touch blends smart phone func-tionality with the traditional trading
turret. Features include a built-in
camera, built in speaker channels
and intercom, wideband audio,
‘secret til lit’ touch icons, variable
colour LEDs and backlit keys.
“With the simple swipe of a
finger putting traders in control
of increasingly complex trading
strategies and demanding client
relationships,” BT claims.
The global banking and finance
team at BT reiterated that cloud
technology plays a major role at BT.
Michael Cooper, CTO for BT
Radianz, explained the Financial
Conduct Authority’s (FCA) recent
‘approval’ of cloud technology
use was a big step, although firms
need to understand outsourcing
via the cloud does not remove the
The team highlights that BT has
been in the cloud business for years,
now providing the world’s largest
network for the financial community, aimed at addressing needs of
market participants whilst providing access to over 400 providers.
“Cloud technology allows venues
to be a part of this environment
and markets to use the venues,”
Foster – a former trader herself –
“Our technology provides flexibility. Best execution requirements
under MiFID II, for example, are
met using our technology whether
electronically or through voice.”
The visit to the innovation lab
and the demo room asserted BT’s
role not just in the trading world
but financial services as a whole.
From cloud technology to blockchain to producing touch-screen
trading turrets, innovation is at
the forefront of BT, or as its CTO,
Michael Cooper, describes it: “
Innovation really is in our DNA.”
“We have several teams inside the lab right
now preparing for an ‘Internet of Things’
WILL PRYKE, DIRECTOR OF OPERATIONS AND
BREAKTHROUGH INNOVATION, BT
Winter 2016 FinTechQ 31