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SAS Acquires Kamakura to Propel Risk Technology Innovation as Financial Sector Braces for Volatility

SAS Acquires Kamakura to Propel Risk Technology Innovation as Financial Sector Braces for Volatility
Underscoring SAS’ growth in the domain-specific solutions space, the acquisition will enable SAS to greatly enhance the breadth of its risk solutions portfolio

Global AI and analytics leader SAS has acquired Honolulu-based Kamakura Corporation. Privately held Kamakura provides specialized software, data and consulting that helps financial organizations across the spectrum – banks, insurance companies, asset managers, pension funds and more – manage a variety of financial risks.

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SAS’ investment decision comes as post-pandemic optimism is shadowed by war, unyielding supply chain disruption, and the end of many pandemic-era financial and social safety-net programs. Rising inflation and recession rumblings have emerged as dark clouds on the global economic horizon, signaling potential turbulence ahead – a time for financial services organizations large and small to closely examine the liquidity risk and other risks in their portfolios.

“This acquisition is an extension of tremendous investments already made in SAS’ cloud-ready risk management platform and integrated solutions,” said SAS co-founder and CEO Jim Goodnight. “It signals our intent to advance market-changing risk solutions to solve the most pressing challenges our financial services customers face. We foresee that the resulting strength of SAS technology, paired with Kamakura’s risk analytics and credit models, will prove far greater than the sum of its parts.”

In acquiring Kamakura, SAS aims to deliver an unparalleled suite of integrated risk solutions, particularly around asset liability management (ALM), and serve additional facets of the financial services industry.

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“The synergistic value in the melding of two highly complementary risk technology portfolios is undeniable to anyone familiar with SAS and Kamakura; it’s like joining matching puzzle pieces,” said Sidhartha Dash, Research Director at Chartis. “Merging Kamakura’s strengths – robust ALM and interest rate risk capabilities, proprietary and sophisticated credit models, and risk data – with SAS’ award-winning capabilities in credit risk management and risk and finance integration on SAS® Viya® is a powerful combination for solutions across the entire balance sheet.”

A singular vision
Kamakura is known for its pioneering vision and quantitative rigor. For more than three decades, it has specialized in software and risk management data for the banking and insurance sectors, currently delivered through two offerings:

  • Kamakura Risk Manager (KRM). KRM is among the most advanced, fully integrated risk management systems for ALM on the market. The software offers transaction-level valuation, simulation, stress testing and cashflow analysis.
  • Kamakura Risk Information Services (KRIS). This cloud-based software as a service (SaaS) offering is a subscription data service that provides credit risk data and analytics that help companies and countries forecast credit spreads and calculate default probabilities based on proprietary models.

The acquisition will bring these solutions’ capabilities into the SAS fold, along with Kamakura’s executives, leadership team, employees and contractors – a noteworthy accumulation of specialized quantitative risk expertise that would take years to assemble in today’s market.

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[To share your insights with us, please write to sghosh@martechseries.com]

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