In case there were any mistake about this year’s hiring priorities in financial services, Goldman Sachs and ExodusPointCapital have just made things a little more clear: it’s all about hiring people with expertise in systematic trading and adding technologists who can construct trading and risk management systems.
Goldman and ExodusPoint’s two newest hires typify the zeitgeist. GS just recruited Silviu Vlaseanu from BNP Paribas as an executive director for its systematic trading strategies team. ExodusPointCapital just recruited Kanav Devesher, the former head of EMEA rates trading IT at Citi, as the head of its European trading applications.
Vlaseanu is a quant who started out in algo development at Cheuvreux in Paris. Devesher who started out as an application support analyst at Bank of America in London. Neither has a traditional trading background and yet each has landed one of the hottest seats in the securities industry.
Vlaseanu’s arrival at Goldman comes as the firm focuses on flow products as its seeks to rebuild its market share in fixed income currencies and commodities trading. In a presentation last week, incoming Goldman CEO David Solomon said flow products accounted for 68% of trades at Goldman last year, up from 50% in 2007. Solomon reiterated Goldman’s focus on systematic trading and praised the firm’s algorithmic bond trading system. It probably helps that at BNP Paribas, Vlaseanu was in charge of building execution algorithms for the French bank’s FX marketplace.
ExodusPoint, meanwhile, seems to be busy building a quant trading platform. The fund, which was the largest ever hedge fund start-up with at least $7bn in assets under management raised from the outset, was set up by Michael Gelband, the former star trader at Izzy Englander’s Millennium Capital. It is already understood to have 125 employees, mostly in a skyscraper off Park Avenue in Manhattan. A London office led by former Bluecrest head of investor relations Simon Dannatt was opened in April 2018, and appears to be hiring.
Alongside Dannatt, senior people at ExodusPoint in London include counsel and head of compliance Christopher Neus (formerly of Perry Capital) and COO Enrico Corsalini (formerly of Millennium and Nomura). As well as Devesher, the fund has hired Benjamin Filippi, a former manager of the quant business at Millennium to build its quant trading platform, Karim-Olivier Sadli, a senior quant strategist from Mako investment managers, and Stephan Winklbauer, a quant analyst and developer from defunct hedge fund Hutchin Hill. Non quant hires include: Alessandro Cipollini, a former macro trader from Hutchin Hill, Demetrio Rojas, an ex-equity derivatives trader at Citi, and Egor Avdeev, a rates trader who previously worked for Millennium but mostly recently worked at Astor Ridge and Argentiere Capital.
ExodusPoint reportedly plans to, ‘trade across multiple markets in the multi-manager model.’ Based on recent hires, this seems to imply building a quant trading system and hiring portfolio managers focused on particular products to work alongside. An Asian office is to follow soon.
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