Thomson Reuters turns to web for major product revamp
Wednesday 14 April 2010
Thomson Reuters is overhauling its markets division in the biggest technological change since the 2008 merger.
A series of launches will bring together products from the former Reuters and Thomson Financial for the first time into two simplified platforms - one aimed at enterprises such as large banks, the other at individual users such as small hedge funds. It amounts to a radical change for both parts of the business.
The web-based platforms will replace traditional terminal commands with Internet-style online search. They are part of a drive to cater to “the 23-year-old at Goldman Sachs who grew up with Google”, said Devin Wenig, markets chief executive, pictured. They also aim to distinguish Thomson Reuters from Bloomberg and its one-size-fits-all terminals.
Thomson Reuters had to “radically slim the company down”, Wenig told the Financial Times. This would not be by cutting jobs - it plans to increase headcount quite a lot this year - but by reorganising its sales and support staff so that “everybody in the company is going to be working on one of these two platforms”.
Since the financial crisis began, big banks had consolidated, mid-sized customers struggled, but a long tail of smaller customers had grown, Wenig said. To cater for smaller clients cost-effectively, online training and customer support would be introduced.
The enterprise platform will launch next week and claims to offer faster delivery of data to clients, many of whom will be able to locate Thomson Reuters servers alongside their own to reduce delays, as Bloomberg does.
Wenig said the group would not change its pricing, but enterprise clients would find the platform cheaper to run.
Next month Thomson Reuters will make Insider, an online video platform it has been testing since last year, available to all its customers. In addition to the company’s own media staff, Insider will allow outsiders such as brokerages to offer videos of their analysts.
In the autumn a desktop platform called Eikon will offer a wider range of data, greater personalisation, and improved risk management, collaboration and emerging markets features.
“The industry is in a hugely different place from where it was in April 2008, and we think a lot of the changes are permanent and structural,” Wenig said. “Big banks are disappearing but we’ve created 1,000 new accounts in ... six months.” ■
- Financial Times
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