Deutsche Börse: Creating trust in the markets of today and tomorrow

About Deutsche Börse

One of the world’s leading exchange organizations, the Deutsche Börse Group organizes markets defined by integrity, transparency, and safety for investors and raisers of capital. It offers its customers a wide range of products, services, and technologies covering the entire value chain of financial markets.

Industries: Financial Services & Insurance
Location: Germany

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Deutsche Börse provides safe and fast infrastructure for financial markets and enhances its systems by adopting Google Cloud to lay the foundations for scalability, resilience, and compliance.

Google Cloud results

  • Enables automation of some operations and reinvests time saved into developing new data-driven products for its customers
  • Provides greater flexibility to manage cloud infrastructure operations, thus faster responsiveness for users through mobile connectivity
  • Serves as a compliance partner to help Deutsche Börse problem-solve the auditability of its platform
  • Modernizes core systems which provide tools to improve central business end-to-end processes
  • Speedy VM migration using Google Cloud VMware Engine, ensuring portability between and across clouds

Boosts agility and supports financial markets

Deutsche Börse Group takes pride in building and providing safe and efficient infrastructure and IT solutions for capital markets to operate in, including Germany’s largest exchange, the Frankfurt Stock Exchange. “We create and maintain critical financial infrastructure. Our customers need that to be rock solid,” says Michael Girg, Chief Cloud Officer at Deutsche Börse. “Besides this high quality we deliver, we also have a reputation for innovation, and we’re passionate about investing in the future. Our purpose is to create trust in the markets of today and tomorrow.”

Founded in 1992 in Germany, Deutsche Börse provides services and solutions that cover the whole value chain in exchange trading, including the admission, trading and clearing, and custody of securities and other financial instruments. With a keen emphasis on innovation and technology, the Group’s critical market infrastructure allows participants to engage with each other and provides IT solutions around the world. Deutsche Börse clears more than €250 trillion a year, roughly three times the global GDP.

“We needed the public cloud to improve agility, drive efficiency, and gain access to cutting-edge analytics and AI tools. But we also needed a rock-solid infrastructure, able to provide a strong foundation. Google Cloud impressed us with its technical capabilities, robust security posture, and mindset of a true partner.”

Michael Girg, Chief Cloud Officer, Deutsche Börse Group

Since 2017, Deutsche Börse has placed a strategic focus on new technologies and has started bringing its IT infrastructure to the public cloud. For that to happen, it needed to find cloud providers that could handle the scale of its ambitions and adapt to the exacting standards of financial regulation. For Deutsche Börse, following a multi-cloud strategy, it has found an ecosystem of solutions in Google Cloud.

“We needed the public cloud to improve agility, drive efficiency, and gain access to cutting-edge analytics and AI tools. But we also needed a rock-solid infrastructure, able to provide a strong foundation,” says Michael. “Google Cloud impressed us with its technical capabilities, robust security posture, and mindset of a true partner.”

Using the cloud to power cutting-edge technology

Innovation has been at the heart of Deutsche Börse ever since it pioneered electronic and high-speed trading in capital markets during the early 1990s. In 2017, the group embarked on a new growth strategy that outlined the adoption of a cloud infrastructure and powerful new analytics and AI tools.

Deutsche Börse had been using traditional virtual machines on private servers in its data centers for years now, but they were reaching their limits. The costs, not only of installation but also maintenance, were large. Similarly, they lacked the ability to scale at speed, which Deutsche Börse would need to power some of the more advanced technology it was interested in.

Deutsche Börse identified the public cloud as the solution to these challenges. Implementing a hybrid-cloud strategy would help manage costs and improve agility. The group decided early on a multi-cloud infrastructure, mainly for regulatory reasons, as well as to ensure resilience. “We wanted to use multiple cloud vendors to make sure that if anything happened to our applications in one cloud environment, we could quickly and easily move them to another and keep them running,” says Michael. Deutsche Börse’s unique requirements for scale, security, and portability led Deutsche Börse to focus only on the world’s leading infrastructure providers, including Google Cloud.

Tailoring cloud technology for the needs of the market

As the provider of systemically critical exchange infrastructure across the globe, Deutsche Börse and by extension, its cloud platforms, are subject to extensive regulations from different countries. If the group wanted to migrate to the public cloud, it would have to meet the high regulatory requirements and prove its compliance to regulators.

When Deutsche Börse first decided to use Google Cloud as one of its earliest cloud vendors, the group had to come up with a legal framework for the move to the cloud. “The big challenge for us was the auditability of the platform. There was a question as to whether or not you could audit a public cloud provider to the standards you need for financial services,” explains Michael. “Google Cloud was not only helpful in agreeing to contractual clauses that helped us keep to the regulatory requirements, the team actually partnered with us to solve the auditability problem together.”

In 2019, Google Cloud was invited to take part in an audit with multiple financial institutions, as part of the Collaborative Cloud Audit Group. “It was unusual to have several institutions take part in an audit, but it allowed for greater efficiency,” says Michael. “The audit with Google Cloud was a success and laid the regulatory groundwork for us going deeper into the cloud.”

In addition to meeting regulatory requirements, ensuring data security is also a deciding factor in cloud use. For Deutsche Börse, a powerful data privacy strategy is applied to all public cloud activities in place, enabling two layers of encryption. On top of encryption via the cloud service provider, the data is also secured with a key from Deutsche Börse.

“Google Cloud VMware Engine gives us a lot of flexibility. We have the scalability and resilience of the cloud without needing to change the control plane and without needing to change our existing VMware instances. It works very nicely for us.“

Michael Girg, Chief Cloud Officer, Deutsche Börse Group

Ensuring portability between on-premises and cloud

With the audit complete, Deutsche Börse has started migrating workloads to Google Cloud as part of its new multi-cloud infrastructure. A key pillar of the group’s cloud strategy: ensuring portability and freedom of choice. For years, these workloads have been running on VMware virtual machines, and they have withstood the rigors of the modern trading environment. To that end, Deutsche Börse will be one of the first users of Google Cloud VMware Engine, a brand new partnership that allows organizations to run existing VMware workloads natively on Google Cloud. In practical terms, this allows the group to migrate its virtual machines to Google Cloud within minutes. As a result, this can be done seamlessly for both Deutsche Börse and the markets it operates in.

“Google Cloud VMware Engine gives us a lot of flexibility,” says Michael. “We have the scalability and resilience of the cloud without needing to change the control plane and without needing to change our existing VMware instances. It works very nicely for us.“

Deutsche Börse has also started to modernize and digitize its core business processes, such as human resources, procurement, and customer relationship management, by executing on SAP’s cloud-first strategy. This comes in line with an upgrade of the existing SAP landscape by leveraging Google Cloud. SAP Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP), Customer Relationship Management (CRM), Master Data Governance (MDG), and Billing and Revenue Innovation Management (BRIM) will be upgraded to the latest SAP S/4 HANA release in a much more flexible and scalable approach than was possible before.

The first development and test systems have already been deployed successfully on Google Cloud using Google-Cloud-native automation and virtualization offerings. In parallel, a modern continuous integration and continuous delivery (CI/CD) pipeline has been created to speed up the software development process and improve time to market in the Cloud. With SAP on Google Cloud, Deutsche Börse will be able to fully focus on process design and implementation while relying on Google Cloud and VMware for a highly automated failover and exit strategy.

A crucial objective of the move to the cloud involves working with machine learning and artificial intelligence technology. In 2017, right at the start of its journey, Deutsche Börse established a center of excellence for big data and automation. With the increasing migration of its workloads to Google Cloud, Deutsche Börse will be able to use products such as BigQuery and Google Cloud AI products to find even deeper insight and value in its existing data, as well as automate more of its operations.

“With Google Cloud, we’re not just meeting the regulatory demands of the finance world, we’re meeting our own ambitions to scale further and use technology to innovate in our industry. We see Google Cloud as an ideal partner to unlock further potential, both for our company and our customers.”

Michael Girg, Chief Cloud Officer, Deutsche Börse Group

Building a stable, scalable market infrastructure for the long run

Deutsche Börse is building an infrastructure designed for stability, agility, and the highest standards of regulatory compliance. With the flexibility of Google Cloud, the group can benefit from a multi-cloud environment, minimizing dependencies on any one vendor and improving resilience. Meanwhile, Google Cloud VMware Engine improves portability, helping the group to use its existing workloads and applications across the entire infrastructure without compatibility issues. Deutsche Börse’s customers will enjoy faster development and more robust operation of the market infrastructure.

All these new capabilities are paving the way to further adoption of cutting-edge analytics and AI tools. “Using and mastering the latest data and machine learning technology will make us more automated and better able to secure regulatory compliance,” says Michael. “Now that we can rely on Google Cloud infrastructure, we’re better able to concentrate on innovation through AI and analytics.”

As it continues to move deeper into the Cloud, Deutsche Börse is already making plans for optimization in the medium term. The use of Kubernetes, the open source container technology developed at Google, will help the group to make further gains in efficiency, agility, and scalability.

“We are committed to using the public cloud as an enabler for innovation,” says Michael. “It helps us become more agile in the work we already do and push forward to what’s next for our business. With Google Cloud, we’re not just meeting the regulatory demands of the finance world, we’re meeting our own ambitions to scale further and use technology to innovate in our industry. We see Google Cloud as an ideal partner to unlock further potential, both for our company and our customers.”

Tell us your challenge. We're here to help.

Contact us

About Deutsche Börse

One of the world’s leading exchange organizations, the Deutsche Börse Group organizes markets defined by integrity, transparency, and safety for investors and raisers of capital. It offers its customers a wide range of products, services, and technologies covering the entire value chain of financial markets.

Industries: Financial Services & Insurance
Location: Germany

About VMware

VMware is a global leader in cloud infrastructure and digital workspace technology and accelerates digital transformation for evolving IT environments.