In the early 1980s, Paul Caplin often appeared on Top of the Pops as the man behind songs like Sabres of Paradise and John Wayne is Big Leggy, both hits for his pop group Haysi Fantayzee.
After the group split up in 1983, Caplin’s interest in technology led him to set up several computing companies under the umbrella of the Infinet Group.
One of these was Caplin Systems, which started as a subsidiary of Infinet in 1995, after Caplin signed an exclusive two-year deal to provide Bloomberg with data feeds from banks and brokers worldwide. The company installed 165 of its systems in 22 countries.
Since 1998, Caplin has developed technology that, effectively, cuts out his initial customer. “We can now enable financial institutions to use the web to get real-time information, rather than go through Reuters or Bloomberg. The internet offers a much larger network than Reuters ever could,” he says.
Caplin raised £9m in venture capital from Elderstreet and Financial Technology Ventures to develop Real Time Text Protocol, which “pushes” new information to clients’ personal computers whenever there is some change. “No data are more than one second old,” says Caplin.
Customers such as Nasdaq, Dow Jones, JP Morgan Chase and UBS Warburg have helped sales soar 306% a year from £293,000 in 1999 to £4.8m in 2001.
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