International Business & Economy 2 senior tech FTs left SGX end of last year

2 senior tech FTs left SGX end of last year




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By: 永久浪客/Forever Vagabond

Yesterday, SGX suspended its trading in securities market due to yet again technical glitches in its IT systems. This is not the first time trading has been halted at SGX. In 2014, MAS reprimanded SGX for two major trading disruptions also due to technical problems.

Steven Leung, executive director at UOB Kay Hian told Bloomberg, “Hong Kong may be better…I don’t remember when Hong Kong had such a suspension because of technical issues.”

About 6 months ago, 2 senior high-ranking executives in-charge of technology quietly left SGX. It was not known if their departures had anything to do with the earlier glitches of SGX. It’s also not known if yesterday’s glitches were linked to those found in 2014. If so, it may suggest that there might be deeper latent technical problems lying inside the current SGX’s systems.

The 2 senior IT executives who left at the end of last year were EVP Bob Caisley and CTO Tim Utama. Mr Caisley, who headed technology operations and technology solutions delivery left in Nov ( while Mr Utama left in Dec.

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Mr Utama, the CTO, was appointed in 2012 (, despite the fact that he had little IT background. According to his resume (, Mr Utama was actually educated in accountancy and finance. He started his career in banking with Bank of Trade (LippoBank) as Senior Credit Analyst/Account Executive in Los Angeles.

He later joined Standard Chartered, holding various non-technical positions:
•SCB Indonesia from 1991 to 1992
•Profit Improvement Unit Officer SCB Regional Singapore, Malaysia and Indonesia from 1992 to 1993
•Head of Trade Services from 1993 to 1995
•Senior Manager Middle Market from 1995 to 1997
•Senior Manager, Trade Products Group Trade Banking from 1997 to 1998
•Head of Service Delivery from 1998 to 2000
•Head of Global Clients from 2000 to 2002
•Head of Banking Operations from 2002 to 2003
•Senior Manager, Service Excellence from 2003 to 2004

In 2004, he moved to ANZ Bank, dealing with trades:
•Head of Trade Service Delivery from 2004 to 2007
•Head of Trade Sales from 2007 to 2008

He rejoined Standard Chartered in 2008 as the Head of Wholesale Banking Operation of Standard Chartered India based in Chennai. After his stint with Standard Chartered, he joined Indonesian bank PT Bank Permata Tbk in 2010. There, he was on its Executive Board of Directors as their Technology and Operations Director from 2010 to 2012. In December 2012, he jumped ship to SGX where he became the Chief Technology Officer.

Mr Utama was recruited by another “foreign talent”, then Chief Executive, Magnus Bocker. Mr Bocker himself left in Jul last year, He was replaced by Singaporean Loh Boon Chye.

New people taking over SGX’s IT systems

In any case, under a new organisational structure started this year, SGX IT Operations and Technology units are now placed under the charge of SGX president Muthukrishnan Ramaswami. It is said that he will take on increased responsibilities overseeing those operations and technology units.

Mr Ramaswami himself came from India. He holds a Master’s Degree in Mathematics from Birla Institute of Technology and Sciences and a Post Graduate Diploma in Management Studies from the Indian Institute of Management in Ahmedabad (

Also, it appears Mr Ramaswami has chosen Ms Tinku Gupta to take over the jobs from the former EVP Bob Caisley. Ms Gupta was previously SGX’s head of market data and access. She also came from India. According to her Linkedin information (, she was a project manager with Tata Consultancy Services before moving to SGX some years back.

Before taking over the technology operations from Mr Caisley, she was responsible for selling, marketing and development of SGX data feeds. She also used to manage trading access into SGX. She graduated from Jadavpur University, Kolkata in the 90s. According to QS, Jadavpur University is ranked in the 351st-400th bracket in the world (

It remains to be seen if there will be more technical glitches and trading halts in SGX with this new team of management in SGX.

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