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– Revamped trade body’s first general meeting of 2016 a roaring success, as financial industry convenes to discuss hot topics of the day –

London, 13 May 2016: ISITC Europe, the industry group dedicated to improving the operational efficiency of the capital markets industry, has held its first General Meeting of 2016. The meeting – the trade body’s first since its relaunch and the appointment of new CEO Nigel Solkhon – was a success, with over a hundred attendees from across the financial sector convening to discuss the theme of “How is the securities market responding to digital and regulatory challenges in a low growth, low margin environment?

The event was structured around five panel discussions, covering the issues of blockchain, cybersecurity, regulation, standards, and the rise of collaborative ventures across the securities market. These topics align with the focus of ISITC’s five new work stream groups, which meet on a regular basis. ISITC Europe now holds three General Meetings a year – the next will be held in September / October.

Nigel Solkhon, CEO of ISITC Europe, commented: It was a delight to see such enthusiasm for the sharing and cross-pollination of ideas across the industry. These are exciting times for the sector – we’re on the cusp of a new digital era. This heralds tremendous opportunity for growth and efficiencies while also bringing its own challenges, such as the increasing threat of cyberattacks and the need to adapt to onerous new regulations. In line with our ongoing work stream groups, the meeting was focused on key areas where closer cross-industry collaboration holds the promise of making progress, as we continue our wider mission to encourage innovation across the industry for the common good.

A top-level summary from the five panel sessions can be found below – for more information or detail, or to speak to anyone regarding these topics and views, please do get in touch.

Blockchain panel

Participants: Gary Wright (BISS Research) Justin Amos (Digital Asset Holdings), Anthony Culligan (SETL), Fabian Vandenreydt (SWIFT), and Brian McNulty (R3)


  • The technology has arrived at a time when markets are searching for solutions to regulatory compliance, client servicing, risk and transparency
  • The panel discussed various use and business cases around the question of how to implement and gain transaction volume
  • Views on the likely timescale for implementation of blockchain technology ranged from two to ten years 

Cybersecurity panel

Participants: David Ewings (Columbia Threadneedle), Ed Wallace (MWR InfoSecurity), Ciaran Askin (Columbia Threadneedle), and Richard Gale (Broadgate Consultants)


  • The threat continues to evolve
  • It is a strategic risk, and should be considered at Board level
  • Mitigation of the risk is not just the remit of the IT department – all parties should be aware of the threat and adequately trained
  • Cybersecurity should be considered as a scenario for BCP and be tested
  • 100% protection is impossible, the focus needs to be on detection and response
  • Don’t lose sight of your ‘physical security’ requirements

Industry Engagement panel (cross-industry collaborative ventures)

Participants: Matt Johnson (DTCC), Tony Freeman (DTCC), Murray Stolworthy (Jefferies), Keith Guthrie (Baillie Gifford), and Kevin Milne (Due Diligence Ltd.)


  • Panellists provided their definitions of interoperability and how it differs across asset classes and post trade processes
  • Discussion was held regarding competition in the post trade infrastructure space, lessons learned from previous interoperability, and how new technology can advance automation and create efficiencies at the post trade level

Standards panel

Participants: Robin Leary (Citi), Matt Johnson (DTCC), Chris Pickles (Independent), and Richard Young (Bloomberg)


  • Panellists discussed the role of standards in a blockchain world, for CSDR and regulatory reporting, and what the standards landscape will look like in the future

Regulation panel

Participants: Dr. Anthony Kirby (Ernst & Young), Henry Raschen (HSBC) Bob Fuller (Fixnetix), Caroline Holmes (Columbia Threadneedle Investments), and Chad Giussani (Standard Chartered Bank)


  • The panel discussed to what extent the post-crash ‘regulatory tsunami’ is over, and what work now remains for firms and regulators
  • How does T2S fits into the wider regulatory framework?
  • How will the City handle a Brexit vote?
  • What is the new market structure post-MiFID II?

Media contacts

Dee Radford

+44 7961 372728

James Reynolds

Aspectus PR

+44 20 7242 8867

About ISITC Europe

ISITC Europe’s Mission is to promote operational efficiency in the global financial industry through education, design, standardisation and recommendation.

ISITC Europe is a voluntary, totally inclusive not for profit group of interested members from the financial industry. Members comprise Investment Managers, Custodian Banks, Broker/Dealers, Software / Data Network communication vendors (technology vendors), Industry Service providers, Consultancies, Depositories and Individuals.

By spanning all parties to a transaction, ISITC Europe undertakes to educate industry participants to reduce operational risk and increase operational efficiency, implement industry-agreed standards across all processing aspects of a transaction, and recommend / endorse industry initiatives and codes of conduct supporting end-to-end Straight-Through Processing (STP). Content for education is canvassed from leading exponents on subjects in the Capital Markets industry and collated for presentation or discussion in the allotted ISITC Europe Working Group.