Robin Neidorf FreePint Feedback - More Competition Desired in Segments of Financial Sources
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By Robin Neidorf


Robin Neidorf throws light on recent FreePint research carried out with investment banks to ascertain their purchasing preferences as well as aspects such as value and global trends in information provision. Also covered are the criteria vendors would need to meet in order to displace current suppliers.


FreePint's Communities of Practice (CoP) offer information managers the chance to talk with each other in a confidential setting about common challenges and interests. They also offer FreePint the chance to hear directly from many industry representatives at once.

Results from FreePint's Product Benchmarking Exercise

Often what emerges from group discussion of this kind differs in depth and tone from what we hear one-on-one from individual customers.

This was the case during a recent CoP session for information managers in investment banks, held in London earlier in February. Our agenda was based on the results of a product benchmarking exercise FreePint had managed on behalf of these banks, part of our service to them as subscribers. Our discussion, however, ranged beyond the details of how many banks offered specific products in the library or on the desktop, to consider such questions as:

  • Which vendors succeed at delivering and communicating value, both to the information service and to different end users?
  • What global trends in information provision affect purchase choices in UK-based purchasing, even if those trends are more prevalent in the US or in other parts of the world?
  • How is the relationship between market data and information services evolving, and what can information managers do to support improved collaboration?

Seeking a Shake-Up in Suppliers

One of the most interesting areas of discussion came when we turned to "vendors we'd most like to displace" from the portfolio. Beyond the catharsis of having intelligent peers validate their less-than-stellar experiences with some vendors, participants were able to describe parts of the market for financial information in which more competition would be welcomed.

A vendor with solid content in the US market but patchy coverage of UK and European entities was on the list: "They've done a good job of talking with bankers, who then ask for the product, but the coverage [in our region] is sub-standard," commented one participant. "There are potential competitors we'd prefer to work with."

Key Criteria for Sources

Participants then listed the criteria they'd want competitors to meet in order to succeed with displacement, including:

  • Making more visible the range of coverage in the target region(s)
  • Partnering with information professionals to demonstrate to bankers and other end users the superiority of the content
  • Adding features specific to the workflow needs of users
  • Collaborating with information professionals to determine - and report on - metrics of "value".

This is, in fact, a pretty good recipe for any vendor seeking to grow market share under any circumstances; the fact that these participants could directly name the vendors they'd like to see move in this direction to meet specific needs in their data provision speaks to their willingness to partner with vendors for mutually beneficial outcomes.

FreePint's Next Step

With this input in mind, FreePint is now planning CoP sessions for buyers and sellers of financial data, to look at specific use-cases and competitive market opportunities. Participation is open to organisations with a FreePint Subscription at the Community level or higher, and we'll be working closely with customers to identify the right representatives of both buying organisations and vendors to create a meaningful, productive dialogue.

Based on this project, we'll bring the same model to other industries and market segments.

Want to be involved or have a suggestion? Contact me at, or complete our Contact form.

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