Open Terms Initiative

OpenTerms (formerly DMFSA) is an open XML standard for describing terms of commercial agreements between sell side and buy side in the fund industry.

OpenTerms (DMFSA) started as a collaborative industry effort of 37 asset managers, service providers, software providers, and industry associations. OpenTerms addresses the problem of eroding margins and high operational costs facing the fund industry. In particular:
  • Significant effort is needlessly spent on agreeing whose “standard” agreement to use
  • It takes too long and costs too much to execute agreements
  • Agreements are often ambiguous and difficult to interpret
  • Fee structures are opaque and difficult to understand
  • Agreements must be stored, retrieved, and searched manually
  • There is significant financial risk in incorrect calculation and payment of fees

OpenTerms syntax allows for structured dialogue for complete and correct agreement capture resulting in direct agreement data storage, data exchange, and automated output. The standard benefits sales, legal, distribution, operations, finance, and counterparty.

OpenTerms is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License and you may use, copy, distribute, transmit and adapt it (including for your own commercial purposes) free of charge under the terms of that license.

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