The ongoing demands of technology continue to factor into our business, as well as for our customers, partners and regulators. This past year has been no different in terms of the continued growth in technology from previous years, but the challenges and opportunities have changed. We’re proud of the fact that our CIO, Kevin Kometer, and his technology team were named this year as the top performer by Institutional Investor magazine in its annual Trading Technology 40 list. Kevin and his entire team work extremely hard every day of the year to meet the needs of our customers and our industry.
We’ve committed a lot of time, energy and resources that have led to this latest honor. As I look back over the past year, here are some of the notable accomplishments our IT team contributed to in order to maintain our technology leadership:
Last June we celebrated 20 years since CME Globex launched and we’ve made many enhancements in speed and capabilities since 1982. With our constant engagement with customers we know that the availability of electronic trading is no longer just about speed. That’s why last year we introduced a number of significant enhancements to CME Globex focusing on predictability and reliability. In addition, we opened our new technology center in Belfast in order to enhance our work with customers outside of the United States.
Throughout 2012 a number of key product offerings and services at CME Group relied on our technology teams to provide access for new product offerings, such as Deliverable Swap Futures and our suite of Virtual Steel Mill products. Our technology team was deeply involved with the launch of CME Direct, our latest development to provide access to the trade automation services for OTC markets. CME Direct also was recognized by FOW last year as the best innovation by an exchange. Customers have also told us to continue to evolve our options technology, which we addressed, and in Q4 2012 electronic options had another strong performance.
Our global exchange partners continue to play an important role in our international expansion, and we work very closely with them to make sure we are meeting their needs as we provide technology services. We spoke with the CEOs last year from two of our partners – Edemir Pinto of BM&FBovespa and Chong Kim Seng of Bursa Malaysia Derivatives – about our partnerships and their local economies. In addition, Jorge Alegria, CEO of the Mexican Derivatives Exchange recently spoke with MarketsWiki about our partnership and Chris Fix, CEO of the Dubai Mercantile Exchange recently talked about the potential of the Oman crude oil contract. All four of these partners rely on our technology teams to provide world-class systems development and expertise.
We’re proud of our ability as technologists to work with our product and sales teams to meet the growing and evolving needs of our customers. As we exit January 2013 and look ahead at the next 11 months we know that the demands on our technology teams will continue. Our capabilities in Europe will expand as we launch our new exchange in Q2 and build onto the services of our European clearing house. In addition, new and innovative products (such as our deliverable Chinese renminbi FX futures) will continue to be the driving force at CME Group, and as we embrace industry change I know our technologists will be helping to enable our customers to better manage their risk.