BLOOMBERG THRIVES ON GLOBAL PRES­ENCE

Tech­nol­ogy shifts in mar­kets will bring greater op­por­tu­ni­ties, says chair­man

New Straits Times - - Business -

RUPA DAMODARAN

KUALA LUMPUR ru­pa­banerji@me­di­aprima.com.my

IT weath­ered the fi­nan­cial crisis, chalk­ing up a trail of record rev­enue, and now Bloomberg LP be­lieves the next three years will bring more op­por­tu­ni­ties.

Chair­man Peter T. Grauer at­trib­uted its suc­cess to the na­ture of the com­pany’s global foot­print, which en­abled it to take ad­van­tage of growth op­por­tu­ni­ties all over the world.

“Our global foot­print of peo­ple who deal in cap­i­tal mar­kets, ba­si­cally the in­for­ma­tion that we have, pro­pels our growth and en­ables us to do things at of­fices, pro­duc­ing 5,000 sto­ries a day,” he said in an in­ter­view with NST Busi­ness.

This year, it has projected 70 per cent of the growth po­ten­tial to come from Asia, and that means Ja­pan, China and Asean.

Asia makes up about 19 per cent of the to­tal mar­ket in con­trast with its 44 per cent strong­hold in the Amer­i­cas.

In the case of Malaysia, the busi­ness has been com­pound­ing over the past five years at a 3.5 to four per cent rate an­nu­ally.

The com­pany has proudly held its rev­enue track record since it be­gan op­er­a­tions 35 years ago, even though there was a dip in the core ter­mi­nal busi­ness in 2009.

“We con­tinue to be­lieve it is the na­ture of our global foot­print that has en­abled us to take ad­van­tage of growth op­por­tu­ni­ties all over the world.”

Most of its rev­enue is de­rived from fi­nan­cial prod­ucts.

Grauer spoke proudly about the 325,000 sub­scribers across the world to­day.

Ja­pan may be its largest mar­ket in Asia be­cause of its global fi­nan­cial cen­tre sta­tus but op­por­tu­ni­ties have broad­ened in most Asean coun­tries where the cap­i­tal mar­kets are in the early stages of de­vel­op­ment.

What drives the busi­ness is not the front-of­fice desk­top fi­nan­cial in­for­ma­tion prod­uct, but the an­cil­lary and en­ter­prise and ex­ec­u­tive prod­ucts as well as trad­ing so­lu­tions.

“Cus­tomers now want an in­te­grated tech­nol­ogy so­lu­tion to their fi­nan­cial in­for­ma­tion needs, which the com­pany is well­po­si­tioned to take ad­van­tage of.”

That means the prod­ucts in its port­fo­lio will re­main un­changed.

“We don’t tend to be ac­quis­i­tive as we tend to drive growth or­gan­i­cally, be­cause we can con­trol the out­comes bet­ter and we can man­age them.

“One of the things that makes us what we are is the fact that the at­mos­phere our col­leagues work in ev­ery day is one of con­struc­tive para­noia — we are the mar­ket leader in ev­ery busi­ness we are in,” he said.

Grauer sits in the three-man man­age­ment com­mit­tee with main share­hold­ers Michael Bloomberg and Tom Se­cunda, and it con­sid­ers the chal­lenges in mov­ing the or­gan­i­sa­tion for­ward to cap­ture growth.

And one of the wor­ries is who is go­ing to dis­rupt them.

“For ex­am­ple, which fi­nan­cial tech­nol­ogy or start-up is likely to knock us off, how to re­tain the ex­cep­tional peo­ple we have and what is the work­force of tomorrow go­ing to look like as we fur­ther digi­tise our busi­ness and as peo­ple rely in­de­pen­dently on ap­pli­ca­tions of tech­nol­ogy.”

Last year, Bloomberg ac­quired Bar­clays Risk An­a­lyt­ics and Index So­lu­tions Ltd, a lead­ing provider of bench­mark and strat­egy indices, port­fo­lio an­a­lyt­ics, risk and at­tri­bu­tion mod­els, and port­fo­lio con­struc­tion tools for US$820 mil­lion (RM3.6 bil­lion).

“It is up to us to make sure that we have po­si­tioned our re­sources to take ad­van­tage of those op­por­tu­ni­ties,” said Grauer, de­clin­ing to com­ment on any tar­get set for its ter­mi­nal busi­ness.

As the busi­ness world takes note of the rapid changes in tech­nol­ogy over the past decade, Grauer said Bloomberg was an early adopter of the Internet, so­cial me­dia and so­cial com­mu­nity with its mes­sag­ing sys­tem and chat rooms.

“We have been a dis­rup­tor from the start,” he said.

Its news di­vi­sion has also gone dig­i­tal and the suc­cess­ful count of 5,000 sto­ries daily us­ing shared in­tel­li­gence across var­i­ous ci­ties is also due to the way the com­pany is or­gan­ised.

“There re­mains greater op­por­tu­ni­ties with the con­tin­u­ing tech­nol­ogy shifts in the mar­kets and the elec­tron­i­fi­ca­tion of mar­kets,” added Grauer.

Cus­tomers now want an in­te­grated tech­nol­ogy so­lu­tion to their fi­nan­cial in­for­ma­tion needs which the com­pany is well-po­si­tioned to take ad­van­tage of.

PETER T. GRAUER Bloomberg LP chair­man

BY SALHANI IBRAHIM PIC

Bloomberg LP chair­man Peter T. Grauer says the com­pany has been a dis­rup­tor from the start.

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