I work in Vela’s Engineering group, leading a team of software engineers in Belfast responsible for the delivery of our various feed handler product. Like many of us in the Belfast office, I got my start at Queens University, though I suppose I was relatively unique in that I graduated with degrees in Physics with Astrophysics rather than Computer Science or Business. As such, I started my career as a Medical Physicist at the Royal Victoria Hospital in Belfast, specializing in image reconstruction/registration on PET scanners.
I joined Wombat at the start of 2007 as a technical consultant, spending time in New York, London, Singapore and Paris in most of the well-known investment banks on the street. Following the NYSE acquisition of Wombat, I left Wombat and joined Citi in 2010 as a part of their EMEA market data team. It was there I got my first taste of SMDS, migrating Wombat feeds to SMDS and creating the GMD platform in EMEA. In Citi, after three years and a successfully delivered GMD platform, I moved from technology to work on business trading applications in HFT (Citi’s ATD business). It was here I got real exposure to how low latency market data impacts profits of an HFT application, the real benefits of SMDS.
Unfortunately, Flash Boys was released, the appetite for HFT market makers interacting with Client Dark Pools proved controversial and ATD in EMEA was shut down. But when one door closes, another opens and I was excited to join the Vela team in Belfast to drive the company forward from a market data technology point of view, bringing almost 10 years’ experience in the business working on market data ticker plants, Order Management Systems, trading strategies, global development teams and network topologies.