Alech software uses mathematical and statistical principles to help improve the efficiency and strategy of professional traders. The company launched one year ago, inspired by founder Alex Lam's realisation that many professional traders still rely on manual processes in managing their funds and trading strategies.
— I wanted to develop a system that helps financial managers make more reliable strategies, make less mistakes and manage more money, says Lam. — There is only so much a single person can do in terms of how many deals and how much data they can handle. Our system can analyse the whole Hong Kong market, with 20 years worth of price data, within 2.5 minutes.
Lam claims Alech's differentiator is its level of customisation. He argues that similar programmes providing trading data do exist, but they don’t ease the workload of traders as much as offer more information for people to digest: — There hasn't been a platform that allows traders to programme their trading strategy into the system. From that point of view our system is the first in the field.
It is a new approach which is gaining attention and after securing its first customers in the US, Hong Kong and China, the company is now in the position to hire new talent. The level of technology expertise in Finland made Lam turn to the job market in Helsinki where Alech started operations in the summer.
— When it comes to skill levels, creativity and general talent, Finland is much more attractive in terms of people available in the job market than Hong Kong, comments Lam. — Finland is more technology oriented whereas Silicon Valley is more business oriented these days. They are looking more on the balance sheet whereas here [in Helsinki] they try to innovate and come up with really cool technologies. And to me that is where the talent is.
Building a family of trading products
Currently Lam is talking with two potential Finnish employees and is looking for suitable office space in Helsinki. The aim is to grow the company within the next two years beyond its initial target market of individual financial managers to institutional investors and major organisations.
Alech knows it has a challenge in convincing the world’s circa 10,000 hedge funds to change their ways, but finding credibility in this sector is key to its wider long term plans. Lam wants to build a family of financial products that would be more accessible to everyone in the market.
— People in the mass market, unlike professional traders, don't tend to have very strong options on how they trade and invest. We would like to provide an advisory platform for that market.
Editor’s note: This article is published in cooperation with Helsinki Business Hub and Invest in Finland.