FNG Interview… It isn’t often that a new online retail broker launches. One that did, and caught our eye, was Moneta Markets, a new brand under Vantage International Group. We’re pleased to speak today with Vantage FX CEO David Bily, and Or Gold from brokerage technology provider Panda Trading Systems which worked closely alongside David and his team in making Moneta a reality.

When Vantage FX CEO David Bily started work on Moneta Markets, the brief was clear and the vision uncompromising. Having spent years refining Vantage’s retail offering and collating large volumes of client feedback, the new brand would be built from the ground up with a completely revamped onboarding procedure and much more.

David Bily

“We wanted to push the envelope and address many of the acquisition and retention issues that established brokerages with older infrastructures are facing,” David, explains. “Everything was to be web-based, with the end-user able to perform all relevant actions, from registration and funding, to account management and trading, right from their browser. This would solve the transition to mobile that the industry’s still negotiating with varying degrees of success, but it would also open up our services to entirely new demographics by allowing for the same great experience across all devices.”

However, the vision didn’t end with UX design. For Moneta Markets, David commissioned an entirely new set of front- and back-end brokerage systems designed to optimise all stages of the end client’s journey.

“We wanted to automate as many of the routine onboarding processes that are traditionally handled by back-office staff. These are usually tedious and repetitive tasks that aren’t the best use of a company’s human capital and can be a real bottleneck when registrations start flooding in. The primary focus was on eliminating frictions on all fronts.”

To make this ambitious new project a reality, David turned to Panda Trading Systems, a brokerage technology provider with a proven record of complex implementations and integrations. Panda’s Head of commercials, Or Gold, smiles when recalling the Moneta Markets project.

“David is a very interesting personality. He knows exactly what he wants, is extremely particular and is as focused on big picture concerns as he is on all the little details. Our discussions involved everything from ensuring clients can perform all actions from within the web-based UI, to specifics like the ideal gradient of shadow on the platform buttons. While others rush to get something to market, he took his time until completely satisfied with the end product.”

For Panda, a Fintech firm that specialises in custom developments, the opportunity to provide a new brand with a bespoke set of software components was an enticing prospect. “Many brokers opt for an off-the-shelf approach for obvious cost-cutting reasons,” Or points out, “and here at Panda we’re always willing to go that bit further to customise parts of our product suite so that it fits the unique needs of our clients. But when you get an opportunity to build something from scratch without having to work around legacy systems, you can really do something special. We designed a completely tailor-made registration process that’s localised for different countries and regulatory jurisdictions. We also provided Moneta with newly designed web and mobile trading apps with a look and feel that’s unique to the brand, as well as a custom client area with various integrations to make the most of the third-party services they make available to their traders.”

Speaking of his experience of working with Moneta Markets, Or highlights the synergies both companies were able to explore during the development and implementation phases.

“Projects like this excite me because they’re an opportunity to showcase all the innovations our team has been working on. David’s vision was refreshing, and it was a case of Moneta’s highly specific requirements all being in areas where we excel as a company. For instance, the brand’s decision to explore new automation technologies allowed us to stress test and optimise some exciting new features that we had been working on adding to our existing product line.”

Or is referring to Panda’s new document verification module for the company’s CRM. Created in partnership with Googles’ Vision AI team, the module brings artificial intelligence to document verification, allowing for a much more efficient and streamlined registration and account verification process.

The new module can read incoming KYC/AML images, filter out poorly scanned uploads while automatically requesting resubmission. It also compares acceptable uploads to information already on file in the CRM, and then even scores them according to quality. This saves human staff members a great deal of time and effort while speeding up account approvals and increasing the volume that can be verified in a given period of time.

Or Gold

According to Or, Moneta Markets ended up being the perfect beta tester for the new module. “These are the kinds of synergies we love exploring with our clients. They allow us to hone our newer and more experimental products by testing them in real conditions. It also gives the client an opportunity to be at the very cutting edge of current brokerage tech. David and his team have understood that automation is the future. They’ve seen how rapidly a user base can grow when many of the legacy frictions the industry has simply accepted are removed. They also get how the younger generation of traders think and what their deal-breakers are at every stage of the conversion funnel.”

To this end, the team at Moneta also requested some additional integrations to its brokerage systems such as Adobe’s Marketo lead management software and the GBG ID3global identity, fraud and location intelligence platform.

“These were more complex integrations,” Or admits, “however they fit perfectly with the brief of creating a new brokerage for the modern age where automation is key, and we were more than willing to work on making them a reality.”

For David Bily, the future of online brokerage is clear. “If you’re not allowing a lead to come in, register, get verified, fund their account and start trading, all without any human intervention or oversight, then there’s a definite ceiling on how big your brand can grow. This is what a lot of the incumbents have failed to recognise, in my opinion. We’re living in an exponential age where you really have to get out of your own way if you want to offer these types of trading services at scale. It’s clear to me that high-quality data collection, combined with automation and AI components, are essential to taking online brokerage to the next level. Online trading is a service that’s no longer niche, it’s mainstream, and eventually managing your positions will be as routine as checking your social media feed.

From Or’s perspective, the implementation is an ongoing partnership between Moneta Markets and PandaTS that will see the Fintech firm continuing to provide support and updates as well as new and improved products and services in the future. “It has been a very fruitful partnership, for both parties, and I look forward to Moneta Markets debuting some of our newest brokerage innovations in due course.”