Is the Asia Hedge Fund Market Going Cloud? A Q&A with Serge Bukhar
Last year, Eze Castle Integration expanded their award winning Eze Private Cloud services to Asia. The Eze Private Cloud is used by more than 2,000 hedge fund professionals worldwide to simplify operations, minimise upfront capital costs and gain a highly resilient, enterprise-grade IT infrastructure on par with billion-dollar funds.
I recently sat down with Serge Bukhar, Executive Director of International Operations at Eze Castle Integration, to talk about the hedge fund market in Asia, and the attitude and adoption of cloud computing.
What is the current state of the hedge fund industry in Asia?
Singapore and Hong Kong are the hedge fund capitals in Asia. We have seen a contrast between the status of large and small hedge funds in Asia. Many larger funds are struggling, with some shutting down, while smaller funds are increasingly doing well and delivering positive results to their investors. Both groups, however, are looking for ways to increase efficiencies and reduce costs.
Has Asia adopted the cloud?
There is a tremendous opportunity for private cloud services in Asia, however, cloud adoption in the region has yet to reach its full potential. The regulatory landscape in the UK and US, and the varying market maturity levels have fragmented the adoption of cloud computing. Many hedge funds and the alternative investment industry are still taking a measured approach to cloud computing, as the industry awaits further clarity on cloud computing regulations and better articulation of business benefits by IT vendors.
What are the barriers to cloud adoption?
Asia is a tough market to tap into, especially with increasing regulations both in the UK and US. The Alternative Investment Fund Directive (AIFMD), for example, can be one of the reasons why it could be difficult for many hedge fund managers to attract investor capital. Many managers in Asia are less inclined than their US or UK peers to make significant capital expenditures in technology on day one. Data privacy and lack of knowledge and understanding of the cloud are some of the obstacles preventing firms from benefiting from this technology.
The attitudes in Asia towards cloud computing are similar to those we had seen in the UK a few years back when cloud computing was the buzz word, but no-one really knew what the cloud was and the benefits it could bring.
What is the future for cloud computing in Asia?
There is a future for hedge funds and investment firms to adopt cloud computing in Asia. Asia offers the tallest buildings, which do not have air conditioning 24/7, so it is very difficult for firms to build out their own communications rooms on premise, and the cost of real estate, especially in Hong Kong is expensive, so the alternative for hedge fund managers is to host their infrastructure with a trusted private cloud service provider.
The cloud provides many benefits such as:
To increase the speed of technology deployment
To simplify IT management and support
To improve IT flexibility and scalability of on-demand resources
To take advantage of built-in disaster recovery and business continuity features and functionality
View our market survey on hedge funds and investment firms’ adopting the cloud. The 18-page report includes details on:
Current & Future Adoption of Cloud Services
Investment Firms' First Cloud Initiatives
Cloud Deployment Models (Public vs. Private vs. Hybrid)
Factors Influencing the Decision to Use the Cloud
Barriers to Cloud Adoption
Evaluation of Cloud Services Providers