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CFN Services and xCelor Partner Enabling Direct Market Access Over Low-latency Microwave

CFN Services, a leading provider of managed automated trading enablement services, and xCelor, developer of the ultra-low-latency FPGA based Market Feed Handler (MFH), announced today the availability of market data delivery and trade execution for US equities markets delivered via ultra-fast microwave on the Alpha Platform.

Microwave is rapidly emerging as a next generation technology for connecting key liquidity venues in the US equities, options, and futures markets within and between New York and Chicago, as well as other leading global markets. While microwave transport technologies offer the advantages of lower latency versus traditional fiber transport, there are a number of limitations including bandwidth and availability that xCelor and CFN Services have teamed to address.

“There has been a lot of buzz as well as misinformation around the deployment of microwave,” said Mark Casey, President and CEO of CFN Services. “Microwave holds considerable promise as an emerging low-latency technology, but its complexity is a level beyond fiber. We’ve partnered with xCelor to reduce the complexity and cost of using microwave for market data delivery and trade execution.”

The technologies for microwave transport are vastly different than fiber. Even within the microwave transport domain, different technologies and radio frequencies (RF) are necessary for connecting trading venues within the trading markets of New York and New Jersey, compared with connecting those markets to Chicago, Toronto, or other distant markets. The Alpha Platform leverages embedded proprietary technology from xCelor to support simultaneous active data paths and manage the complex failover from microwave to fiber ensuring consistent data delivery at the absolute best latency.

“We’ve built our Market Feed Handlers on the latest Altera FPGA technology and proved them out in some of the most demanding HFT environments,” said Robert Walker, CTO of xCelor. “We’re excited about our partnership with CFN Services to leverage the next generation of our technology to enable microwave based DMA on the Alpha Platform.”

The xCelor MFH technology is currently in production on the four major US electronic equities markets, with the Chicago markets slated for later in the second half of the year.

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