A Deep Dive into Exberry: Interview with Ronen Nachmias, Co-Founder & Chief Technology Officer at Exberry.io
A lot has changed, but many things remain the same. When Exberry first launched, it was considered a game-changer in the capital markets ecosystem. So we sat down with Ronen Nachmias, co-founder, and CTO, to deep dive into what we build for Exberry and why it is relevant to the ecosystem and climate. Let’s learn more about Exberry.
What is Going On In The Industry, And What Are The Limitations You Saw?
When we designed Exberry, we always considered the two perspectives: a market that requires ultra-low latency and millions of orders per second. The second case of a micro-market requires fast time to market at minimal upfront investment. We saw that customers had to choose between two non-optimal options that do not allow scale and will drive recurring investments over time. We wanted to help solve this issue. We wanted a technology that would enable us to scale on-demand globally. And as a result, what we end up with is that micro-markets can now scale to become top-tier markets, and top-tier markets can innovate.
Innovative markets must be agile and iterative – start fast and scale fast, and time to market is critical. This purpose leads us to invest efforts to ensure our customers can deal with their business. We make sure we assist them in ramping up by providing best of breed technology required at the heart of every market. We acknowledge cloud technology and SaaS as an accelerator and enablers for innovations.
What Was The Industry Doing In The Past?
Usually, such markets face the build vs buy dilemma, and none was effective. Nothing stood in the middle of this spectrum. Until Exberry, the situation was that technology specialized only in specific asset types. It was not agnostic enough to support the required diversity to meet the growing needs.
Furthermore, existing technology is developed as part of a market operator enterprise rather technology company. This creates a conflict of interest between the technology they made in-house to support the primary business and the customer using the technology.
Up until Exberry, there was no independent technology provider focused on building core technology for exchanges and markets. And building in-house is not easy or cost-effective.
In past years we have seen the emergence of cryptocurrency, and it has become more and more popular. Still, I believe that it’s only the first sign of something bigger. When bitcoin came in and started to dominate, it proved the potential of issuing a decentralized token. Crypto changed one fundamental thing: the central control of big institutions over what can be owned and traded.
How Is Exberry Taking A Lead Here?
At Exberry, we wanted to build an enterprise-grade technology that can support any business at any scale. And depending on the customer’s needs, we fit the technology to serve its needs and meet the SLA required. achieving this with the same technology. So it means that even the micro-market will get a robust top-tier trading technology. Exberry has built a flexible technology that can adjust to each market’s different sensitivities if it is cost-sensitive, performance-sensitive, or location-sensitive.
Exberry is cloud-first technology and works with perfect synergy with the cloud. We can adjust the service to run dedicated and shared models and control the level of data segregation both from physical and logical aspects. This flexibility opens up many new opportunities. We made sure we kept the flexibility here to serve any market.
The public clouds are a vibrant environment, and the amount of research and development around them is incomparable. The potential of getting compute power on-demand boosts innovation. in that sense Exberry is consolidating the markets around the world, I can visualise how Exberry opens an opportunity for markets to collaborate as a global exchange using our technology.
How Did You Make Exberry Scalable – What Factors Make The Product So Scalable?
We should consider several factors to scalability from the different aspects of the system; scaling means efficiency in dealing with; geo-locations, cloud providers, feature expansion, architecture, high availability, disaster recovery, utilization, performance, continues-delivery, etc.
Breaking down each of these problems into its most minor pieces and finding innovative solutions to solve them separately is how we made the Exberry platform unique and scalable. In addition, we use distributed algorithms to solve complex problems of scale in practical and reliable ways.
We understand that solving these problems is fundamentally teamwork. We work together to innovate on every level and every day. In the end, it’s all a matter of having the right culture that allows the nurturing of technology.
The main concepts that guide us while building Exberry are:
The first is that the core technology must be developed in a certain way to process and utilize the hardware it is deployed on to its maximum. We employed the Mechanical Sympathy approach to harmonize the software with the chosen hardware. With this approach, we can achieve ultra-low latency.
Allows us to scale in 3 dimensions of the system, X-scaling means many duplications of the entire system, Y-scaling means scaling only a specific feature of the system, and Z-scaling means enabling shards of data. With this approach, we can scale the system in the most efficient way possible and maintain high levels of SLA.
We believe that a coherent approach to systems architecture is needed. The system should inherently and by design be fault-tolerant and react more gracefully to failures and extremes. We want systems that are Responsive, Resilient, Elastic, and Async.
I believe the software itself should solve this. As a first citizen of the architecture, Reactive Systems are more flexible, loosely coupled, and scalable. This makes them easier to develop and amenable to change. They are significantly more tolerant when a failure occurs and resilient if it meets extremes; it deals with them with elegance rather than a disaster. Reactive Systems are highly responsive. For example, the built-in flow control and back-pressure support allow the system to slow down a consumer from overwhelming the system with too many requests that can put the system at risk and guarantee a level of SLA.
Allows Exberry to deploy every product and service in multi-tenant modes in controlled data segregation levels. Resources and data can be fully dedicated to serving specific tenants or shared across several tenets, including replicating the entire Exberry sites and point-of-presence or even segregating inside a single point of presence.
Flexibility in cost allows us to tailor flexible business models to fit our technology to actual market needs. One of the unique options we give is that we also enable our clients to change and scale these models when required to avoid upfront costs and have the peace of mind to focus on what they use and need throughout their business life cycle.
It also gives them more flexibility when setting up many environments as needed on a single physical hardware or deployment and still logically segregated from one another.
We Understand that different markets can benefit from each cloud provider’s additional benefits. There are differences between the various clouds, including private clouds.
Exberry offers a flexible deployment model and is agnostic to the cloud infrastructure, so it can deliver the service anywhere and automatically launch a site or a tenant in shared or dedicated models globally, scale independently, and fine-tune to the underlying infrastructure.
Exberry service supports bare-metal deployments, and this is important for traditional markets that are still considering the cloud but yet ready to decide to move to the cloud entirely.
Bare metal has its benefits beyond the cloud as it provides much more control and fine-tuning of the hardware you want. Exberry can customize it for specific needs.
Why be concerned about this question cloud or not? Why not both? Since Exberry is agnostic to these concerns, you can scale and migrate from bare metal to the cloud or bare metal without worrying about replacing the system’s heart and having complicated, expensive projects.
In that sense, with Exberry, you are future-proof as your needs will change in the future. You know that at least this aspect is covered.
Who Were You Targeting When You Built Exberry?
When we built Exberry, we targeted all markets requiring a price discovery service. Essentially, every market with supply and demand involves price discovery. We are finding where supply and demand meet. We were looking to target any asset class and business size, from the micro-market to the most prominent enterprises that wish to upgrade their technology and innovate. Together with our customers, we learn how to solve this problem in all its aspects and perspectives as we meet many use cases daily.
We are focused on building the technology that will allow the shift or the subsequent big explosion in digital transformation.
For me, it’s exciting to see innovations ramping up and Exberry technology as a significant enabler. Of course, we saw many existing use cases already happening in the market, such as digital assets, capital markets, commodities markets, energy markets, gaming, etc. But also always thinking about these new markets that did not emerge yet, such as music and identity.
It falls into what we were planning when we built Exberry, and to see it happening proves our assumptions and meets our vision.
To support all these use cases is a challenging mission from an architectural point of view as they are very different in their business requirements and life-cycle. Still, over time we learned from our customers, and together with we were able to build Exberry.
Why Is Low Latency Key To Many Exchanges Or Marketplaces?
When we speak about latency, we mean consistent latency. It refers to the responsiveness of the system to perform a specific task if we send it to the system
1M orders, we wish to see that all orders are handled in a predictable response time.
We wish to meet the supply and demand at a specific price point, so the system’s responsiveness is essential. Suppose I want to meet the supply or demand at that price point. The system must respond on time. This allows closing a deal at that price.
Furthermore, latency also represents how effective the system is, what level of quality of service it has, and also what limits it can meet in certain situations.
Not all markets are sensitive to latency, but for those who are sensitive to latency, it’s due to the business nature of the market that has to deal with large volumes of traffic and many trading parties or even algorithms or AI machines that try to benefit from even the slightest market fluctuations.
What Are The Biggest Pain And Issues Of Legacy Technology, And How Are You Guys Solving Them?
I must say that there are many good things we can find in legacy systems that have solved problems for many years. So it’s proven a technology that we can learn from.
And yet times have changed, and many new technologies have emerged that give us the opportunity today to make things even better and learn from the market history and legacy. But we also must learn from other business domains how to bring modern architecture to a traditional world and how innovations can benefit from proven traditional markets – I find this interesting.
I recognize the main concerns in legacy systems are scalability, flexibility, time-to-market, and Total Cost of Ownership (TCO).
I refer both to business scalability and technical scalability. For example, how do I use my traditional capital markets engines to meet and expand my business to digital securities and NFTs and do it cost-effectively? This is something I don’t see how legacy engines can do. So usually, the operations end up with multiple providers, one per use case.
Legacy technology will struggle for many years, even though they try to refactor, improve, and adapt. It is still moving relatively slowly regarding the technological changes, which means – not scalable – essentially. How can I make this transition effectively without stopping the business or setting technical limitations for the company from pursuing its dreams? From a technical point of view, scalability means efficiency and enjoying the new cutting-edge technologies emerging.
We wish to see how we can answer any asset class regarding flexibility. We want to respond to its needs quickly and accurately adjust to changing market needs. We want technology that allows us; to minimize risk and allow to innovate. Exberry technology addresses these issues with a modular architecture that allows us to release new products and features quickly without affecting what is already running and working and maximizing our reuse of ongoing investments that accelerate us and encourage us to try and experiment.
From time to market and Total-Cost-of-Ownership (TCO) point of view, the legacy systems have many limitations that start from the business model, if it’s licensing the software – that means long training and stuff that requires to support the software and operations that needs to deploy the software, long projects of integration of the software to the organization, etc. This impacts TCO and time to market and introduces a rather significant barrier to entry for emerging markets. Exberry solved this with its SaaS model. Markets can focus on building their operations, not worrying about running and operating and training staff to deal with the technology but directly and immediately get SLA and hit the ground running.
Exberry invested a lot in speeding and automating the launching of a new market and also providing a sandbox environment where customers can connect and start working immediately.
Finishing thoughts after a wealth of deep-diving into the tech of Exberry. The industry is starting to understand the power of decentralized ownership, also known as WEB3, and other asset types. I believe the real value is beyond blockchain technology per se. It’s more about a kind of market democratized that will allow more people the opportunity to own a diverse portfolio of assets globally. I can imagine a world where our assets and everything we hold will be listed and traded digitally. And yet there is a long way to go until we reach this place. Exberry hopes to be part of that and assist in the ecosystem to make it accessible for all.