Hedge Fund Huddle podcast

Outsourcing for trading optimisation

Episode 8, Season 1

In today’s ever-changing markets, trading equities across regions can often be challenging. As a result, many traders are finding that to be successful they need to partner with those capable of providing reliable execution and those who also have market expertise and access to advanced technology. Enter outsourced trading. According to a new study from Coalition Greenwich, roughly 30% of buy-side equities traders surveyed in the U.S., Europe and the U.K. expect their firms to consider adding an outsourced trading for cross-border trading in the next two years. Compare that to another Greenwich survey from 2020 where only 5% said they would consider it. What’s changed? To help us answer that question we are joined by John Sobral, COO at Stillpoint Investments in New York and Brian Jepsen, a Managing Director at LSEG TORA.

Host: Jamie McDonald

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  • Jamie: [00:00:04] Hello everyone, and welcome to another edition of Hedge Fund Huddle, now, an award winning podcast. Pause for applause. Yep, that's right. We recently picked up the award from the Gramercy Institute for Financial Content Marketing . So, thank you everyone for listening. For those of you that haven't listened to us before, this podcast aims to peel back the curtain of hedge funds and delve into how they work, why they work, and why they continue to be so successful. I'm your host, Jamie McDonald. I was a PM at SAC Capital now, obviously Point 72, but now I turn the microphone on those still working in the industry to try and find out the latest trends and insights. Basically, whether you work at a hedge fund or indeed want to start one, this is some great content for you. Now today's topic is so relevant, not just because it's growing so fast as a trend, but because of the ramifications it will have and is already having, to be honest, on markets and hedge fund fee structures and the sell side is now having to adapt. Luckily to help us figure all that out, I have two experts with me, John Sobral, who's currently COO at Stillpoint Investments, which is a hedge fund here in New York. And Brian Jepsen, who's an MD at LSEG TORA, a trading outsource solution business. In fact, I even hesitate to say trading because they do so much more than that. But let me stop talking, Brian. So, let's start with you. Tell us about your background and how LSEG TORA fits into it all.

    Brian: [00:01:27] I started my career at Prudential Securities in 2000 on a fixed income liaison desk, and after that joined a Asia Multi-strategy fund called Evolution Capital Management in 2002. From there, we spun TORA out in 2005, and since inception of TORA, I've managed the outsourced trading business. TORA is a global financial technology firm. We provide risk management, portfolio management and execution management systems. We were acquired by LSEG last year and that's what I'm doing now.

    Jamie: [00:02:04] Now I'm just looking at a report that came out in Q2 of 2022 from Coalition Greenwich saying, then in the last four years, the number of outsourced trading vendors has grown by more than 400%. And I'm guessing that doesn't look like it's slowing down. Now, do you want to just give us some insights into why the growth is so large?

    Brian: [00:02:23] During Covid, certainly there was a need for contingency trading services, backup trading services. I should say that period was when you begin to see a lot of these reports coming out, but I think there is a paradigm shift when we think about how the asset management community has considered outsourcing the trading function, and that's kind of what's brought some of these larger players into the space. If we go back, outsource trading goes back probably over 30 years. Over that period, most of the time there were just independent providers. You didn't have the large institutions like custodians, prime brokers, bulge bracket banks involved in the space. Of course, we would fall into the other category, which is we're unique in that we're a global technology and data analytics firm, of which there really aren't any other players in that vertical.

    Jamie: [00:03:12] Great. Thanks, Brian. We'll get into those topics a little bit more in a sec. But John, let's bring you in. Tell us a bit about your time at Goldman, what your role was there and what you're doing at Stillpoint.

    John: [00:03:20] Yeah, sure. So, I started my career actually in the back office of a company called Merrill Lynch, which no longer exists, but I worked for a year in their back office, just out of college and then shifted over to Goldman just a year later, where I joined our prime services business, which really functioned as a service provider to hedge funds, broker dealers and proprietary trading firms. So, I started my career in New York, relocated to Hong Kong in 2008. A very interesting time to move halfway around the world, but I spent just under nine years in our Hong Kong office, still within our prime services business. So, I've been in and around the broker dealer and hedge fund space my entire life. In 2021, I chose to go off on a new venture. I left Goldman and joined my partner, Eric Wong, who's the founder and CIO of Stillpoint Investments. We are an equity fundamental, China focused, long, short hedge fund focused on the public equity markets, launched in April of last year, and I serve as the Chief Operating Officer for all things Non-investment and I joined him in 2021 to get things up and running, and it's been a fun ride ever since.

    Jamie: [00:04:26] Now John, I guess we'll have to hear about your Hong Kong stories another time. But I do want to hear them. They sound fun. But you're in the perfect position. Having been in prime brokerage, you know, working on the sales side of things for so long. And now here you are in the hot seat looking to build and branch out this hedge fund yourself. I’m dating myself here, but ten years ago when I was working at SAC and we were doing our own trading, it was really an all or nothing affair. Either you had the scale and the numbers made sense for you to have in-house trading, or you were a smaller sized asset under management firm and you would look at outsourcing opportunities. But it seems like over the last ten years it's become much more nuanced. It's not an all or nothing decision. So, both from your perspective when you're at Goldman and now as your role as COO, how has that dynamic changed?

    John: [00:05:10] Yeah, I think from my perspective, at Goldman had a somewhat unique, I think, view of this space because I actually serviced this client segment as my client base. So, we acted as the clearing participant for a number of the broker dealers on the street that were offering outsourced trading. And this dates all the way back to 2003, 2004 when I first started and was covering some of the shops that Brian was alluded to. This has been around for a long period of time. It's nothing necessarily new. However, I think the structure and the value add has changed as well on a broader scale. So, I think bulge bracket sales trading desks have shrunk. You've had an electronification of the equity markets. You've had globalization on the investment side, which requires time zone and local market expertise. So, you've seen that depending on your strategy and your structure, the value of an outsourced solution, whether that's full stop or consultancy basis or an added value over and above what you have in-house is becoming much more prevalent.

    Jamie: [00:06:07] Are you willing to kind of share the kind of decisions you're making, you know, now in terms of how to structure Stillpoint?

    John: [00:06:13] Yeah. I think this certainly applies to outsourced trading. I think it also applies to other functions that that hedge funds have started to do more outsourcing of, as opposed to keeping in-house. And I think it's really about value based on needs. And that goes for all outsourced decisions. But I'll stick to more trading for this particular conversation. So, on the trading side, I think what's important is to understand what you need out of the role. Right. And that's going to be different depending on your portfolio manager about by their style, by the markets they're trading, by their execution style, about what benchmark they're targeting. So, there's various different factors that go into that sort of equation. And then when I think about outsource and when I always thought about outsource, when I was building this business a little over a year ago was, okay, well, can I get that? What's the best optimal value I can get right? Am I going to be able to get a better deal for a better cost and still meet my needs? Right. But you can't throw away what you need. You always have to work towards that solution. And then you find the most value in your in the different offerings that are available to you and I will say that to your point earlier, about 400% growth in the space. I think if you went back 15, 20 years, when I started covering it, there was probably like four shops, right?  So now there's a lot more out there. And with that, they all have slightly different offerings. They have all have slightly different verticals. So, all of that you have to take into consideration and find where can I get the most value as a package sort of deal.

    Jamie: [00:07:41] Just one quick question, John, before we move back to Brian, to what extent are your decisions driven by your investors who want lower fees? They want a more global product. Can you talk a little bit about how investors influence your decision?

    John: [00:07:53] Yeah. At the end of the day, investors are our customers, right. That is the asset management business. So, they have the final say in in everything. Right. So,   I think the way that I thought about it as I was building, it was and as I was selecting service providers, as I was choosing which functions that I wanted to keep in versus which I wanted to outsource, I had always thought of it through the lens of an investor. Right. So, an investor comes to me during the operational due diligence process, they might have a lot of questions about why I made a selection, whether that's on an individual firm or that's on a choice in terms of what's going to be in-house versus outsourced. And I always thought about making those decisions through that lens. Meaning if I can't make an explanation, if I don't have a good solid story, if I can't stand behind it, then I wouldn't make that decision. And I think that's ultimately how asset managers should be thinking about, keeping their customers happy but also meeting their needs as best they can.

    Jamie: [00:08:47] Brian coming back to you. You mentioned the grouping the outsourced solutions business between, let's call them the bulge bracket firms, prime brokerage custodians and then independents like yourself. How is the gross differed between those three groups, and what effect is that actually having on the sell side, and how the sell side is actually having to adapt for this, growth in outsourced trading?

    Brian: [00:09:08] So growth in the space, clearly it's been from larger institutions entering. Interpreting your question correctly when large brokers are entering the space, and are now, let's say, on the other side of the fence, interacting with the sell side that it can let's just say when we started doing this, it was a niche business which sell side brokers didn't really pay much attention to. There really wasn't much concern about we weren't signing triparty agreements that we sign now. Right. There wasn't really reticence to engage where I think now the sell side, given the factors that John already mentioned as far as electronification and junioization of roles and looking at the biggest thing being fee compression and everything and commission compression, all of that. That's made the large brokers much more aware of outsourcing as being a potential competition to what they're doing. Thats just from my perspective, I think that's been a big change, right, because of the institutionalization of the space. It's increasingly important what model you're following  and whether or not you are an extension of your client's internal desk or you're acting as a broker on their behalf.

    Jamie: [00:10:22] One of the reasons I was asking this is it just sounds from a kind of regulatory or even sort of legal perspective, a very fine line to be walking if you have traders on both sides of the fence. And I know you guys are trying to be very careful what you say as we all.

    John: [00:10:35] Look, I think, brokers have a different set of challenges. Right. Because if you're working with the hedge fund manager in a fiduciary capacity as opposed to as a broker or agency capacity, those are two sort of different things. I think they're entering the space because it's attractive. And to Brian's point, commissions have been compressing for the past 30 years. I mean ever since it went from, you know, teenies to decimalization commission has been under pressure. Right. So, commission compression, if you still want a bigger shot of the share of the wallet, you have to participate in some of these things to continue to maintain your portion of the wallet, which is why I think the bulge brackets are becoming more there. And think that in combination with the fact that it's become more acceptable. And we were just talking about LPs thinking about it through the lens of a, an investor. Right. I think going back ten, 15 years ago, it might be looked at not as ideal. Right. So maybe acceptable for a startup but not for a large, institutional setup, multi-billion dollar.

    Jamie: [00:11:29] Not just LPs. But asset allocators as well.

    John: [00:11:31] Yeah the asset allocators. Yeah absolutely. Yeah. So, I think those asset allocators have warmed to the model. And in combination with that you've seen traditional broker sales trading desks shrink or become younger as Brian mentioned earlier in terms of expertise. And that's created this hole in the market which I think outsource trading has really grown into over the course, really over the course of probably the last 5 to 10 years.

    Brian: [00:11:53] Yeah, I think initially I won't name them by name, but one of the largest outsource independents. When they started doing this in the late 90s, what they offered was scale to smaller managers. Right. And part of that scale is redistribution of information to smaller managers. And they're still known for that being a conduit to a large broker network. But what that means now to the brokers to the sell side, given this margin compression they've experienced, there's a lot more concern about where this information is being distributed and whether the end client of that outsourced provider actually pays for it. And in contrast, like what we do, we're a pure extension. We're not acting as a broker network, we're not redistributing to clients that don't interact with them. And it's important because if you think the role that we see it as is being the eyes and ears of the portfolio manager. Right. So, and in that capacity, we're very dependent on brokers being open to sharing with us and viewing us as being no different from the end client that we that we represent. In all these cases, we're acting, acting in a complementary or supplementary basis, we respect the relationship that the broker has with the end client, the end trading desk as well. Right? We're not trying to step in between and be the name.

    Jamie: [00:13:09] Well, let's talk a bit about the cross-regional aspect of outsourcing trading, which I guess is a very attractive proposition. I think I'm trying to find it in the report now. Again, it was from a Coalition Greenwich, that PMS and asset managers are increasingly looking abroad for alpha. And to the extent that outsourced trading can help, not just with lower cost, but with local expertise, even the kind of settlement issues. I mean, I think that's something else we should touch on is there's obviously a logistical aspect of this is you just don't want to spend hours trying to settle all these trades, particularly in some markets, which you may not know as well. Brian, can you perhaps talk a little bit about that, clients who come to you, who want to start trading in Asia and, and what products or solutions you offer?

    Brian: [00:13:50] I think the driver we see for international. And I'd like to lead with in that report you referenced, two thirds of managers felt that outsourcing their trading would improve access to liquidity, and over 60% found that it could improve execution quality. And I think it's important to consider it's not outsourcing relative to insourcing always. It's also what's the value of having anyone in the seat, right. There's clients that would hand their order overnight to a broker. It may not see the value of having active execution. Not to say that's always wrong. Right. So, I think when you're dealing with especially illiquid securities where liquidity is an important factor in execution, having a human in the seat acting on your behalf with discretion is important and very simplistically. Right. You hand it over overnight to one broker. You're exposed to that broker's liquidity. That broker is not sending it to another broker. Right. You need someone in the seat to do that and to do it in a strategic way, right? Not exposing your entire order to one broker, being able to figure out who's axed in that name, like, for example, in a market that has foreign investor limits, right, that some of these emerging markets are very insular and have local liquidity pools. Coming in as a foreigner into that market, and being out loud with a broker can have significant execution impact. Right? So being tactical about how you go about that, which is a lot different than in the US where you're pinging an ATS., right, to see if there's liquidity. Right. If you think about the market structure in the US, there's 13 exchanges, over 60 dark pools. That whole fragmentation is kind of what drove the growth of algorithms in the space, because they were needed to handle best execution requirements within that very complex structure. And what we see in Asia, if you think about like 40% of exchange volume is off exchange in the US, I think it's maybe like less than 5% in Hong Kong is in the dark. Japan's 8%. I think China there is no dark market. When we think about when we go through cycles like the one we're in now in China, which as you know, it's out of favor, liquidity is very constrained. One of the major brokers in Hong Kong put their flows out last week in the largest ticket they had was less than 5 million US. It's one of the developed markets there where we've seen broker aggregators also dry up doing 10% of the volume they're doing a few years ago. Right. So, in liquidity constrained high volatility markets, I think the value of a trader in the seat is especially pertinent. And how can we complement an existing desk or work with a portfolio manager who may who may feel that there is no need for a trader?

    John: [00:16:38] First I want to acknowledge what you said at the beginning, which is effectively that there is more of a globalization for hedge fund managers. Right. Like you look at US funds, you'll see way more international exposure in US, alternative funds, hedge funds, whatever you want to call them than you ever have historically. Right. So, there has been a shift to more globalization in attempts to, your point to find alpha, wherever that may be. Now, there's two things that I think jump out at me. And Brian really spent the most time on fact two. Fact one is the more simplistic one where you're dealing in a multi time zone world. Like what does that mean? Are you going to hire somebody who's going to be a night trader? What's the quality of life of that person going to be? Are they going to be the only person in the office? Are you going to have to pay a premium for it? Right. If you are trading globally but more importantly than a time zone thing I think is what Brian was alluding to which is really local market expertise. All equity markets are not created equally, that China trades very differently than the US market trades. So, I think having that level of expertise, that market microstructure knowledge, that local rules knowledge, whether that's operational or compliance, Brian mentioned foreign ownership limitations, all of these things that maybe to a US based investment advisor or a portfolio manager who just loves this name and the fundamentals behind it, but really doesn't understand what the implementation is going to look like. That's where you're looking for that consultancy type service, where you can get an outsource provider that has that expertise, that has that domestic on the ground presence that could fill that gap that you might not have.

    Jamie: [00:18:10] Yeah, very good point. Actually, I was just thinking on that consultancy side of things, Brian, to what extent do you sort of hold a mirror up back at some of your hedge funds and clients and say, listen, I've seen the platforms you're using. I've seen the algorithms; I've seen the trading platform you're using. If you came to us, this is what we would recommend, and this is how much money we could save you. And time, I guess, is obviously another major aspect. Is that something that you do too?

    Brian: [00:18:33] Yes. Well, we within LSEG TORA, we have a team that does quantitative best execution analysis, and they consult with both our clients and the technology clients on their execution methodology, looking at their benchmark, looking at which algo's they select, and then also looking at things like alpha at different times of the day. How are they executing or are they executing on the close, on the open, spreading over the day?  So that's something that we've done extensively with clients.

    Jamie: [00:19:02] We've, of course, been talking mainly about long short equity hedge funds up until now, and I'd be interested to know what other strategies you speak mostly too, but just on the long, short equity one. And then I'd love you to talk about other strategies. Does the change in time horizon which I feel has happened over the last five, ten years, made a difference to your business as an outsourced trading? What I mean by that is, you know, when I was in the business, our time horizons were very short, and I feel like now they're just getting longer and longer. There's more algorithms and bots in play. There's more volatility. But ideas tend to work out well in the medium term and less well in the short term. I wonder if that's a trend you're seeing. And then yeah, if you could just talk a little bit about other strategies, who come knocking at your door, that'd be great.

    Brian: [00:19:46] When it comes to what you're speaking of very short term momentum style trading it still exists. I think John can speak to this more than me, but I think it's definitely being dominated by more quant type firms. That being said, I think a lot of that sort of execution is not being outsourced. So, if you think about, the importance of execution, obviously shorter time horizon execution is a much bigger component of the overall alpha of the trade, right, where stretching out, I think even for long term investors, execution is important, right. If you think over maybe not as much on one trade but over a large number of trades, it adds up. And it's especially important on a relative basis. Our clients are mostly long, short and long only with medium to longer term horizons. Multi strat or event driven firm, the trader in the PM are often synonymous. So, if we're helping them, it's definitely on like an overnight supplementary basis where you see less of pure outsourcing or complete outsourcing in that space where for equity long short, that's the space where I think there's most demand for this because of it's a portfolio manager centric model. The role that we're providing is execution.

    Jamie: [00:21:02] It’s nuanced in a lot of these markets, yeah, that makes perfect sense. John, so, I'm looking again at this report from Coalition Greenwich that came out in Q2 of this year. Top internal challenges in the next three years. And I wonder if you could comment from where you sit. 59% of asset managers said performance. I guess that's always going to be pretty high on the list. Talent management at 50%. Just interested, related to this topic or not, about how easy you're finding it to find talent. Rising costs 44%. I guess very investor LP driven. Data management at 35%. Technology at 31%. Perhaps you could just talk a little bit about what challenges you see over the next few years.

    John: [00:21:39] Yeah. I mean capital raise is always going to be and performance are always going to be the first two. Right. Like it's all about going out and finding investors that are interested in your strategy and aligned with your interests. And obviously that comes with positive performance. Those are by far top of the list in terms of what keeps me up at night. But human capital is a real thing. You've seen especially in the hedge fund space, you've actually seen a very a small group of players becoming very, very large by both an AUM perspective as well as just the size and number of teams and portfolio managers. I'm talking about really the multi manager multi strat space. Right.  and so, as a result of that there's it creates this vacuum where a lot of talent is going in that direction, which makes it for smaller managers sometimes a little bit more difficult to compete. Right. And when I say smaller managers, I'm not talking about small by stance of AUM. I'm mean like smaller organizations. Right. Like you're talking about multi thousand people companies. It's much more institutional versus your ten person shop or your five person shop, which could those places could easily be in multi-billion dollar funds. So how does that fit into this conversation. Think it comes into play? Because it's one less headache from an HR perspective, right. Like you've got somebody in house. Where's your redundancy? What happens if this person gets hit by a bus or picks up and quits for more pay elsewhere? What are you going to do? Then you're back out searching with an outsourced solution you're getting like almost economies of scale because there's and I've had actually not at Tora specifically, but other outsourced providers where my primary coverage left. But there's somebody else right there that knows me, knows my account and nothing changes, right? Like all the processes are the same. Everything is. So, you become a little bit less people dependent. Although obviously you always have your favourites of people who you like to work with. But I think not having that HR headache in actually I think this is a US very well-known thing. I mean we're in an over employment situation with massive wage inflation. If you're trying to run a lean shop that becomes very challenging in this, in this current environment.

    Jamie: [00:23:35] I haven't actually seen the numbers, but is there a specific numbers for wage inflation within finance.

    John: [00:23:39] I don't know. I'm sure there's statistics. I don't know them off the top of my head, but yes, I can imagine. I mean, I look at a lot of the consultant, compensation studies that, they put out and they show you the average cost, or average price or median, they slice and dice it depending on your strategy and your size and all those things. And there's been a pretty steady creep, especially at lower levels, more junior levels. I would say, actually, you know, the more seniors have been relatively steady and the juniors have tended to creep up. Yeah.

    Jamie: [00:24:07] Brian, how about from your perspective, what do you feel are the biggest challenges facing the hedge fund industry over the next few years?

    Brian: [00:24:13] From my perspective, I think a big driver of outsourcing, in addition to the cost side of things, the regulatory side of things, where the requirements placed on funds from reporting and this kind of ties back into costs. That's something that we've had clients over the years have used us. We've handled reporting for them. And I think that whole regtech space is seeing considerable growth. And some of the reports you referenced, they are especially with regards to the asset management space. There's expectation that regulations will continue to be more onerous. Right now we see the shift to T plus one in the US and the implications that has on asset managers globally, especially Europe.

    Jamie: [00:24:56] You talk a little bit about that because I wasn't aware of it until we spoke earlier this week. But shortening settlement rates, if it's happening here and it starts to happen around the world, the implications of that could be quite seismic, just in terms of having to outsource that faster. Because if you have to get your ducks in a row before you go to bed that night because that market wakes up while you're asleep. Just talk about the dynamics of that because I found it interesting.

    Brian: [00:25:18] Sure. That theme, they a few years ago, they shortened the settlement cycle in Hong Kong. It's a global theme. It's happening in Canada. They're reviewing this in Mexico right now. The thinking is I think in the UK, they're reviewing it as well. The thinking is that shorter settlement cycles are more cost effective, reduce risk, reduce margin requirements for firms. So, the ideal is that obviously the negative is that it puts more burden on the individual funds and the operations of those funds. Right. So, if we're thinking about you're sitting in Europe trading into the US, the cycle is cut in half. But I think one survey put it at around 80%, was the time reduction that back office was going to experience. Because when you think but you come back in the next day, you don't have time, a great example are non-dollar denominated funds that have to do their FX. Right. Generally, do that on T plus one. There is no time on T plus one. That's a trade date activity now. And that means that that's happening well into the evening in Europe. Something that's having a real impact. We're seeing firms are having to shift staff to US to handle this. Do I want to pay the overhead on staffing in the US or is this something we can outsource? 

    Jamie: [00:26:32] John I wanted to come back to you on the topic of AI actually. To what extent is AI consideration for you both in terms of trading? But we were just talking about hiring young new talent, but the influence that AI could have, just in terms of reading research reports and just data collection, how does that factor into what you're thinking about today?

    John: [00:26:50] Yeah. So, look, I think it's so new in terms of ChatGPT was really the first large language model that was like publicly released. I think the technology has probably been around in different forms for longer. But like in terms of a public utilization. Look, I think it's going to ultimately be a disruptor. There are going to be parts of the process or the workflow or your day to day that are going to be better done or more easily done or more efficiently done however you want to describe it using this type of technology. I don't think we're close yet. I will say, from a marketing perspective, sometimes it's helpful because you can maybe put your bullets and your thoughts down and it would generate something that's a little bit more clean and professional. Right. So, there are around the edges we're definitely looking at different use cases for it. I think it's going to develop over time.

    Jamie: [00:27:39] Well, guys, we're sort of drawing to the close here. I wanted to ask any sort of final comments on the topic. Brian I was going to just ask if, as you look out into the future, do you see any slowdown in outsourcing or the trading solutions business over the next few years? We're just going to continue to keep on trucking.

    Brian: [00:27:54] I think that definitely the need for the surface will continue to grow as the trends we mentioned as far as margin compression costs and increased acceptance from the asset allocator community make it much easier to do. And that's the sort of thing like we've been doing this, what, 18 years now? And the interest and acceptance to the space just in the last few has changed and for the positive. And I think it's just the beginning. Right. Because if you think about the players that are in the space, the institutionalization like my firm, which is a global data analytics provider, we think about what the value of that is, right? If we think about what we just forget about outsourcing in-sourcing or any of that, what is the ideal trading desk? It's obviously the individual being skilled in the market or asset they're trading. But then the access to data and technology is really important. But beyond that, I think something that's often missed is the support teams around that. So, it's not just using third party technology and cobbling them together. It's having development resources and support resources, as you see in the large funds, like the platforms. Their trading desks, they have very extensive support. They build specific tools for their execution teams to use. And as far as the efficiency, what that means to an end client. If you have a team that can make your trading process more efficient and customized, it allows the trader to spend more time communicating information. And that's kind of what the point is, right? It's not just saying, oh, tech for the sake of just having a shiny object. The bottom line here is that when you have better systems that are more customized to the individual process for each client, then you're able to add greater utility in the role.

    John: [00:29:43] Brian, I think you hit it perfectly when you said where there's value. So, I think, look, we're the asset management is under a fee pressure environment has been for the past 5 or 6 years. Right. For various different reasons, which we don't we won't get into here. But there's been fee pressure in the asset management space. So now I think what asset managers are very focused on is finding the best value. What do I find valuable? Is it you know somebody who has technology that comes along with the service. That has consultancy that comes along with the service. It's not just the execution. Right. It's like, what else can I get? And I think that's where that's why outsource trading, to answer your question, I think is going to continue to expand because think you have a lot of players in the space that are trying to find different angles or different value propositions to bundle it with. In addition to what you're getting, which is really in many ways a more eloquent solution to something you would do in house at a slightly better price point. So, with better redundancy, no overhead headache, like, you know, all those sort of things. So you get just in and of itself, you get a benefit. But to Brian's point, I think the evolution of the space is also becoming more of a bundled service. It's execution and this execution and that. And I think that's why they'll continue to do well.

    Jamie: [00:30:53] Guys, I think that's a perfect time to stop. It's an exciting time for the industry, John, best of luck with everything at Stillpoint. We wish you all the best, and Brian, what an exciting time to be where you are. I know you've said to me earlier, if people do want to get in touch with you, they can email which is Brian.Jepsen@lseg.com. Thank you Brian, thank you to John, and we will see you again soon, thank you very much guys.

    John & Brian: [00:31:15] Thank you.

    Jamie: [00:31:19] The information contained in this podcast does not constitute a recommendation from any definitive entity to the listener. Refinitiv is an LSEG business. The views expressed in the podcast are not necessarily those of Refinitiv, and Refinitiv is not providing any investment, financial, economic, legal, accounting or tax advice or recommendations in this podcast. Neither Refinitiv nor any of its affiliates makes any representation or warranty as to the accuracy or completeness of the statements or any information contained in this podcast, and any and all liability therefor, whether direct or indirect, is expressly disclaimed. For further information, visit the show notes of this podcast or refinitiv.com

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