There is an oft-repeated claim by open source vendors that their software can save enterprises money, compared to proprietary software.
In the case of open source startup Marketcetera, saving money isn't enough: It wants to make money for its customers, too. Marketcetera's customers are traders in the financial markets, and to better meet their needs, the company pushed out its 1.0 release this week, adding new features for trading strategies, complex event processing and multiple broker support.
"We've gone through 14 releases, and as an open source company, we have been around for over two years, and we've been doing incremental improvements," Toli Kuznets, Marketcetera's CTO, told InternetNews.com. "But this is the first fully featured version of the platform."
The new platform comes as the financial services industry faces its harshest climate in decades, continuing to reel from current macroeconomic conditions, prompting industry firms to look for new ways to build their businesses.
And for traders, a key weapon in their arsenal is their choice of trading platforms, which is often a closely guarded secret designed to give them a competitive advantage. For Marketcetera, its version 1.0 release aims to deliver those advantages with new features and functionally that aim to help traders do more trading.
The 1.0 release adds in a complex event processing engine to calculate common financial data like moving averages as well as to assist in providing better market triggers. Kuznets also said the 1.0 release has a better user interface with more configurable desktop notifications that provide improved trading suggestions. The platform itself has been expanded to be able to handle multiple, simultaneous broker connections.
The new additions build a key earlier Marketcetera release from October 2008, which included new back-office integration capabilities.
Though it's only hitting version 1.0 now, the Marketcetera platform has been used for live trading since the end of 2007, Kuznets said.
An upside from the downturn
The current economy actually represents an opportunity for Marketcetera, according to Kuznets. He noted that since December, Marketcetera has seen a spike in the number of downloads of its software. Kuznets did not provide any specific figures on how many have downloaded the platform.
Roy Agostino, chief marketing officer at Marketcetera, said that the company's goal is to get as many people as possible looking at the software. Agostino did not share any specific conversion metrics that Marketcetera has for converting free downloads into paying supported customers, though he noted the key is for users to have a good initial experience.
The fact that Marketcetera is open source doesn't actually matter all that much to many of its users, according to Kuznets.
"In the end all the traders really want is something that gets them to trading as fast as they can," he said.
This article was first published on InternetNews.com.