WatersTech meets Collin Coleman, Abide CEO

With its acquisition of regulatory reporting specialist Abide Financial, markets operator and post-trade services provider ICAP plans to offer a sophisticated end-to-end product for regulatory reporting.

Abide is now a subsidiary of ICAP’s post-trade risk information (PTRI) division.

“The purpose of the acquisition from the ICAP post-trade perspective is to provide our clients with a very simple, holistic solution for regulatory finance reporting,” says PTRI CEO Jenny Knott. “We can connect Abide to Traiana and our other PTRI services, leveraging their subject matter expertise.”

Traiana, ICAP’s transaction processing business, will form the primary interface with clients. It will feed transaction data into Abide’s architecture for validation and enrichment before it is sent out for reporting. Abide is an approved reporting mechanism for the Markets in Financial Instruments Directive, a regulatory reporting mechanism for REMIT energy market regulation, and is currently awaiting approval to become a trade repository under the European Market Infrastructure Regulation. ICAP and Abide say they do not anticipate a difficult integration process, as their technology is fully interoperable.

Abide Financial welcomed the acquisition as an opportunity to accelerate growth and scale its technology, producing a much more complete solution for clients.

“The compliance-related challenges our clients face have intensified tremendously,” says CEO Collin Coleman. “What firms want to buy in this space has changed a lot in the last 18 months, and we see that evolving a lot in the future. Looking at the breadth and mix of services and how they can all come together to form a coherent unit, we realized very quickly there is a whole world of permutations around validations, data enrichment, reporting data under multiple jurisdictions and receiving data through multiple sources and sending it on to multiple endpoints.

“Getting a complete service—that kind of full coverage and capability—is something  we would have been building out in areas that it’s fair to say are not really our core expertise. Being part of ICAP, we can marry our technology capabilities with the complementary APA and connectivity components.”

Coleman says that by scaling up its offering, Abide will be able to take in more volume through the reporting hub and offer access to more regulatory endpoints.

“Finally, the trend we currently notice in the regtech market is being able to cope with large data storage, safety, management and reconciliation,” he adds. “Having the agile cloud-based technology and utilizing ICAP companies’ capabilities, we hope to become a leader in the market for regulatory data management.