Igniting Innovation at Sparkstone Analytics
Interested in technology and finance? Looking for a challenging project? Sparkstone Analytics is reshaping the way money is moved in the marketplace by using sustainable trading algorithms to create gains in equity markets.
Sparkstone Analytics will be at Clubfest on Sunday, January 31, from 1-4pm to speak to students about recruitment for their exciting venture. Entrepreneurship@Dyson sat down with Ryan Kishore (’17), the company’s Co-Founder, to learn more:
What does Sparkstone Analytics do?
Sparkstone Analytics is fundamentally an algorithmic trading group. We have a given strategy and that strategy needs to operate and make a decision that moves money in the markets. To make that happen, we have this strategy, we’ll call it some data from our database, and we set that whole thing up to operate efficiently. It’ll send that information to the strategy, and the strategy will send it to a risk engine which allocates each of these strategies according to how it performs. From there, the risk engine will actually take that output result and send it to a brokerage account which we have linked, and that’ll move shares in the market. It’s a fully comprehensive system.
What was it like building an algorithmic system from your dorm?
It was actually quite a thrill. It had that classic college entrepreneurial feel. One of the greatest things was if I had a question or needed to get something done, I could immediately go over to my friend’s room and ask him, “Hey how do I do this?” or “What does this mean?” We each have our different strengths, so I am doing more on the executive side, as well as actually building the strategies themselves and deciding how the whole platform comes together. My friends know the technicals, the CS, and the database interface with our system.
What is some of the data used in your algorithm?
We have a whole range of data that we can use for our system. The cool thing about our platform is that it’s scalable.
This is one of the major areas and advantages that we have to our system in comparison to a lot of free services. Our system can handle pricing data, volume data, and any other data that you can choose to integrate, such as the consumer price index. You can add it all in there at any resolution you choose.
Have you started trading?
The system is functioning on a paper trading account. Our goal at the end of the day is to make sure our system can operate correctly. We want to make sure there’s no long term issues that might come up, so every time we create a new strategy or you update our system we have it run on a paper trading account. This paper trading account allows us to see if there are any issues, if we are making some nonsensical trades, and if so we have to fix it before we make it live.
Why did you start your business as a student? Why not wait until after college?
Why wait? It’s as simple as that! There’s a thrill to starting something, there’s a thrill to ownership. There’s a thrill to being able to work with people who are just as passionate as you are and are as driven as you are to see a result not in years, but now.
What kind of teammates are you looking to recruit?
As I mentioned, our system has a couple of different aspects. There’s the analytics side and there’s the trading side. We are looking for people with CS experience, people who are interested in finance, people who can help us do legal work, and people who are interested in data analytics. We need design people because we are maintaining a brand image now.
Most importantly, we are looking for people who go above and beyond. I don’t want anyone who is just going to come in and take this as just another club because it’s not. There is a reason we chose to become a company. We don’t want people to just come along, write this on a resume, and move on. People who share the values of building, creating, and innovating on a daily basis are the people we want.
What is the most rewarding aspect of being a part of Sparkstone Analytics?
I like seeing the progression. We started out in a dorm with a few MATLAB algorithms, but we take our project to the next level every week. Every month I am getting to see progress. There are some major milestones that we are hitting – getting the company, building a risk engine, planning the different phases, constructing our team, getting the website up recently, and seeing legitimacy built into this organization purely based on how much we believe in it. Every day we come in and work on it. Because we believe in it, it keeps coming together.