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Former Merrill Lynch Vice President Launches IT Consultancy...

Date: Wednesday, November 3, 2010
Author: News Release

Former Merrill Lynch Vice President Launches IT Consultancy to Provide Hedge Funds and Private Equity Funds with Fractional Chief Technology Officer (CTO)


New York – November 3, 2010 - Julian Croxall, an 18-year financial IT veteran and former Merrill Lynch Vice President, announced today the formation of Cambridge CTO to provide hedge funds and private equity funds with senior level technology management at a fraction of the cost of hiring a full-time chief technology officer. Croxall founded Cambridge CTO in response to growing demand for technology executives who have a 360-degree understanding of the importance of proper technology controls and processes.

“If fund managers want to attract institutional assets, they must meet institutional standards of technology governance. Today, institutional investors care as much as about technology controls as financial ones,” says Croxall. The problem, according to Croxall, is that many hedge funds and private equity fund managers spun off from proprietary trading desks are unaware of the array of technological services that these large financial institutions had been providing. For instance, Croxall says it is vital that fund managers be able to demonstrate who has access to a fund’s proprietary algorithms or other intellectual property, what procedures are in place in case of an energy blackout and who oversees the numerous vendors supplying the investment firm with computer services.

Croxall says asset management firms need to see the chief technology officer as a business management role, not a technical support role. As hedge funds and private equity funds grow, their technology management demands can become overwhelming. IT infrastructure integrators, although they have IT expertise, do not have the objectivity to assess other vendors, including themselves, impartially. As Croxall puts it, they are not vendor agnostic. They may also lack experience managing business controls relating to banking or client services, which are key in asset management. “The chief technology officer is not a hands-on technical role, fixing desktops and servers,” says Croxall.

Cambridge CTO [Chief Technology Officer] and its team of experienced IT specialists use a proprietary system to provide four levels of service to assist hedge funds and private equity funds with their technology infrastructure needs. The most comprehensive level, the ‘Fractional CTO’ level supplies a chief technology officer who fully integrates with the investment management firm, but a much lower cost than an in-house CTO. The second level – called the ‘Partner CTO’ level - assists larger firms that have an in-house CTO by taking over routine management tasks.  The ‘Startup CTO’ service level will guide new managers as they disentangle from trading desks of major securities houses and set up their own operations. Finally, for more narrowly focused needs, the ‘Program Manager’ level provides start-to-finish oversight on a specific project.

Mr. Croxall, a native of Britain, has spent 18 years assessing and implementing technology controls, including nearly five years as Vice President at Merrill Lynch where he conducted technology reviews of companies under consideration for acquisition by the financial services giant. He also served as a Vice President at Morgan Stanley and, before forming his own company, as a director at Richard Fleischman & Associates, a technology services firm based in New York.  Mr. Croxall has also advised some of the foremost names in finance such as Barclays Capital, Morgan Stanley and Credit Suisse.

About Cambridge CTO (www.CambridgeCTO.com)
Cambridge CTO provides senior level IT management to hedge funds and private equity funds without the cost associated with hiring a full-time employee.  Clients that engage with Cambridge CTO will be provided with their own fractional CTO who will become an integral member of their team on a part-time and as-needed basis.  Through its iCTO framework, Cambridge CTO helps members of the alternative investment industry by devising and executing a comprehensive technology strategy and providing ongoing support so that managers can focus on providing value for their investors rather than the minutia of their technology.   This cost-effective solution, designed to meet the investment management industry’s gold standard for technology controls and processes is ideal for firms of all size but especially for emerging and medium sized funds.  Cambridge CTO specializes in infrastructure, market data, trading systems, software development, telecommunications, data centers, business continuity, documentation, contract management, business process controls, due diligence and IT security.

Media Contacts:
Mitch Ackles
Hedge Fund PR
(305) 444-9868

Jaye Scholl
Hedge Fund PR
(818) 241-6169



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