As most everyone in the commodities space knows, most bilateral wholesale deals require manual confirmations and invoicing, a rather archaic systems when one considers that exchanges and many brokers have been providing electronic solutions for years.
However, we are starting to see a few firms entering the market with the intention of helping move these bilateral transactions into the 21st century. One of those is OneCore Global (OneCore), a Stamford CT based start-up headed by Vikas Wadhera, a long-time industry expert and investor.
OneCore is offering two related but dedicated solutions – OneConfirm and OneInvoice – as part of their OneMatch solution suite to better automate the confirmation and invoicing of bi-lateral commodity transactions. For each of these processes, the OneMatch platform is designed to digitally exchange transaction data (confirmations or invoices) between counterparts, brokers, agents and other business partners in a secured, real-time integrated manner.
Additionally, OneCore provides a market integration platform called OneConnect that is a “family of software solutions (that) enables customers to connect their E/CTRM, Accounting/Back Office and other internal systems with Trades Execution Venues (OneX) and Market Data Providers (OneData).”
We recently spoke with Mr. Wadhera, about his company’s approach to solving the problem of the constant exchange of “electronic paper” documents (usually pdfs via email). He noted the commodity trading and risk space has been essentially underserved in technology advancements, with the biggest innovation in that space being the movement from faxed confirms to email. Where financial services and other industries have automated almost all data exchange among partners, these markets have continued to rely on document exchange. As he said, “Other initiatives to improve the confirmation and invoicing processes in these markets have failed to find traction because they required a broad consensus on the part of the market participants as to the data and formats that would be required to be exchanged. Our approach is that it doesn’t really matter if all market participants agree on a single data set or format, as long as two specific parties involved in the transaction agree, they can setup their own dataset. We are not trying to impress standards on any industry. We let our users decide their formats. Additionally, with our patent pending technology that supports counterparts to set their own data set/formats, our platforms make it easy to support not only initial trade confirm, but also lifecycle confirms such as Price Fixing, Notice of Readiness, Contract Optionality, or pass scale tickets information along which almost all of our competition lacks.”
He noted the benefits of using the OneCore platforms as being the elimination of email document exchange (and the inherent risks such as ransomware, hacked emails and cyber-attacks), reduction in data errors from manually keying data or relying on error-prone OCR solutions, and improved speed of reconciliation via accelerated data exchange.
In terms of market adoption, the company is just beginning to rollout their product. Having initially launched just as the pandemic hit, they have been delayed somewhat in getting the attention of the market. But, by continuing to educate commodity market participants as to what is possible, and backed by recent successful pilot projects, Mr. Wadhera does expect new customer announcements soon.