Looking to minimize latency and bring a host of other innovation to its capital markets operation, Deutsche Bank is opening a technology center in Wake County, North Carolina. BTN recently discussed plans for the center with Group Technology & Operations COO John Eagleson.


BTN: What is the focus of the new tech center?

Eagleson: We'll be focusing specifically on strategic application development and software engineering; developing custom applications for the capital markets business.


Will the unit offer technology to other institutions?

No. It will be fully captive and Deutsche Bank will be the only client. Staffing will be drawn from professionals in the Raleigh-Durham area, campus recruitment and transfers.


Does Deutsche have other similar technology development centers?

We have another significant captive center in Moscow, which leverages a similar model. There is a lot of experienced talent in that area as well, and a vibrant university system near Moscow that generates a pipeline of skilled people. We currently have about 600 folks there and it's been a very successful venture.


What are some of the areas of interest within the capital markets?

One of the things we're looking to focus on is cultivating skill sets and innovative solution development around what we might call 'systems engineering' in the classical sense; that is, optimizing the interaction of applications, databases, operating systems, platforms, storage media and networks to reduce latency and improve performance. This requires an interdisciplinary approach across a variety of software and hardware competencies.


What role will accommodating more volatile capital markets play in the center's work?

We're looking at lowering latency, and we're also concerned with architectural hardening, such as improving the robustness of the trading infrastructure as volumes ebb and flow in a more dramatic way in the new marketplace. We're also looking at things like algorithmic trading and risk analysis.


How are you going to engage with new Web-enabled architectures that are being used across the industry as a means to reduce latency?

We are definitely looking at pushing business logic and workflow to the server as a key lever for reducing latency and extending front-end access flexibility. This is one of the reasons we're locating a development center near major universities with excellent computer science and engineering programs. We're going to partner with those programs and leverage the innovative thinking that's coming out of them - through internships, research programs and recruiting - to bring to bear the latest learnings in such arenas as Web-enabled architecture in developing solutions to our client's business challenges.


Are these specific institutions producing research or scholarship connected to Web architectures?

Yes, they are producing knowledge capital in a number of fields where we have a targeted interest. But another very intriguing dimension is the prospect for proactively ideating novel ideas for the business that have not yet been contemplated. We're looking at this as an opportunity to create a context for imagining and developing these solutions... Another important factor was the quality of life and the 'stickiness' of the area. Many of the students who attend the area universities schools look to stay in the Raleigh-Durham vicinity after graduation.

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