Eric Pharis has been working in quantitative ﬁnance for 20 years. Pharis earned his bachelor of in Mechanical Engineering from The University of Texas Austin in 1998 and his Masters Degree in Operations Research from Cornell University with a certiﬁcate in Financial Engineering in 1999. While studying at UT, Pharis also worked for IBM and developed ﬁnancial models to assist in output optimization.
After graduating Cornell, Pharis moved to Wall Street and began proprietary trading at Daytek Securities, the founders of INET, a pioneer in the area of electronic and algo trading.
In 2004, Pharis joined forces with David Kyle and founded Karma Blackbox. Karma Blackbox focused on developing algorithms for high frequency trading. In 2005 Pharis and Kyle launched the Karma Blackbox trading platform. Karma Blackbox has been proﬁtable every month since its inception generating only 15 days of net trading losses in its ﬁrst 650 days of trading. This original strategy is still in production and proﬁtable. Karma Blackbox subsequently expanded trading operations to London, Tokyo and commodities markets.
In 2012, Pharis and Kyle launched quantBrasiI — a fully quantitative, computer driven hedge fund in Brazil. This fund is built on the Karma Blackbox trading platform with headquarters in Miami and Rio de Janeiro.
In 2014, Kyle and Pharis launched EDM Operators — a commodities trading company using automated software based on news events- The software utilizes the Karma Blackbox architecture originally created for our ﬁrst trading algorithms.
Pharis is in charge of the proprietary algorithm development and the associated trading strategies for the BBS platform. He also manages all historical data and acts as the lead data analyst for BBS.
David Kyle has been working in software development for 21 years. Kyle earned his Bachelor of Science in Electrical Engineering from the University of Texas at Austin in 1996. While at UT, Kyle worked for Microsoft supporting the launch of Windows 95.
Alter graduating from the University of Texas in 1996,Kyle returned to Dallas and began working in quality assuranceand support at J. Driscoll & Associates, who specialized inaccount reconciliation software for retailers.
Kyle left Driscoll to develop software for Globeset from 2000. In 2002 he advanced to Trintech as a Senior Software Developer.
In 2004, Kyle joined forces with Eric Pharis and founded Karma Blackbox, focusing on developing computer driven algorithms for high frequency trading. In 2005 Kyle and Pharis launched the Karma Blackbox trading platform. Karma Blackbox has been proﬁtable every month since its inception generating only 15 days of net trading losses in its first 650 days of trading. This original strategy is still in production and proﬁtable.
Karma Blackbox subsequently expanded trading operations to London, Tokyo and the commodities markets.
In 2012, Pharis and Kyle launched quantBrasil — a fully quantitative, computer driven hedge fund in Brazil. This fund is built on the Karma Blackbox trading platform and has headquarters in Miami and Rio de Janeiro.
In 2014, Kyle and Pharis launched EDM Operators — a commodities trading company using automated software based on news events. The software utilizes the Karma Blackbox architecture originally created for our first trading algorithms.
Kyle is in charge of software engineering, database management, tick feed processing and all aspects of system development for the Blackboxstocks platform.
Gust Kepler serves as the Chief Executive Ofﬁcer for Blackboxstocks, Inc. Mr. Kepler is a ﬁrm believer in the adage “simplicity sells”. His mission as the founder and developer of the company's technology is to offer the general public a comprehensive ﬁnancial technology tool in a simple and user friendly format. In addition to overseeing all aspects of product development, Kepler is responsible for strategic planning, marketing and corporate ﬁnancial decisions.
Mr. Kepler previously served as the President of G2 International, Inc. G2 is a consulting ﬁrm with expertise in investment banking founded by Mr. Kepler in 2002. G2’s primary focus is taking private companies public and providing advice with regard to capitalization, strategic planning and investor relations.
Prior to founding G2, Mr. Kepler founded Parallax Entertainment, Inc. in 1996. Parallax was an independent record label, online promotional vehicle and e-commerce solution for musicians. Prior to Parallax, Kepler was the founder and President of Glance Toys, a toy and junior sporting goods company.Over its 10 year span, Glance sold its brand of products in dozens of major retail chains including WaI-Mart, Target, The Sports Authority and 7-Eleven.
Brandon serves as the Chief Technology Ofﬁcer for the company through his consulting ﬁrm Cyfeon Solutions. Brandon serves as the lead architect and developer for Blackboxstocks real-time web application.
Cyfeon is a Financial Services vertical focused on operational and regulatory compliance. Financial Institutions such as Schwab, HSBC, Cowen, and more use Cyfeon’s purpose built solutions to federate and analyze large and disparate sources of data.
Prior to co-founding Cyfeon, he managed the Telecom & Network Outsourcing vertical for S3. His responsibilities included business development and delivery oversight of companies such as British Telecom, Hewlett Packard, and Proctor and Gamble.
Prior to S3, Brandon managed Lavastonn’s Professional Services unit. He was responsible for managing a team of 50 full time employees worldwide as well as ensuring the delivery of enterprise grade solutions to those global customers.
Brandon holds an MBA from Southern Methodist University, a BBA in CIS from Texas State University and served four years in the United States Marine Corps.
Vice President of Operations
Jeff Sharrock oversees accounting, communications, and IT solutions for the company. He is also in charge of tinancial analysis, budgeting, compliance and corporate governance for Blackboxstockscom.
Prior to joining Blackboxstocks, Mr. Sharrock served as the Director of Operations for G2 International, Inc. G2 is an investment banking consulting ﬁrm specializing in taking private companies public and providing those companies with advice regarding capitalization, strategic planning and investor relations. Sharrock oversaw all aspects of daily operations and was heavily involved in the accounting and regulatory aspects of the company. He also served as the main point of contact for larger clients.
Mr. Sharrock came to G2 from Toytech Creations Inc, where he served at their Operations Director from 1996 until 2009. He was the primary contact for all national accounts, including: Wal-Mart, Target, Dollar General and Toys R Us. Responsibilities included oversight of vendor compliance, order receipt and processing, logistics and accounts receivable. During his tenure, Mr. Sharrock designed a CRM database to automate and streamline order processing. These systems cut the order processing time by over 50% and reduced customer charge-backs by over 75%. He also installed new IT solutions for printing and shipping logistics that cut associated costs in this area by over 50%.
Rod Taylor has been in the Financial Services industry for +20 years. He was a designated principal at CyberTrader, which was acquired by Charles Schwab in 2000. After the acquisition, Rod ran the companfs Brokerage/Operations & Brokerage Technology, Risk Management, and Order Flow Management. Rod also managed the Market Data team which built Schwab’s ticker plant powering every Schwab trading application with quotes, executions, news, etc.
Rod left Schwab in 2005 to build a Financial Services vertical for S3, a best execution product company for banks, bulge bracket ﬁrms, and capital markets.
In 2011, Rod joined with Brandon Smith at Cyfeon and launched a Financial Services vertical focused on operational and regulatory compliance. Customers such as Schwab, HSBC, Cowen, and more use Cyfeon’s purpose built solutions to federate and analyze large and disparate sources of data.
Through Cyfeon, Rod is in charge of project management and budgeting for web and UI and UX development for Blackboxstocks, Inc.
Consultant Financial Services Industry Liaison
Keller Reid is a ﬁntech veteran with 13 years of experience in all aspects of the ﬁnancial services industry. He has advised ﬁntech startups and serves on multiple boards in addition to his work in the wealth management space.
Keller earned his BS in Social and Decision Sciences from Carnegie Mellon University, and is a graduate of the Securities Industry Institute at Wharton. He speaks regularly at industry events, sits on a variety of industry committees and is a Director and former Secretary of the Dallas Securities Traders Association. He holds his series 4, 7, 24, 55 and 63 licenses, and is studying for the CFA Institute's CIPM exam in April.
Keller began his Wall Street career as an engineer at Schwab Capital Markets (now UBS) in 2001. In 2002 Keller began managing technology for Jefienes, the largest market making desk in Dallas. In 2005 Keller started Pensons’ Execution Services division. The system he designed for Penson is still regarded as the most sophisticated retail router on the street. By 2009 his division was generating $20mm+/year in revenue and 15% of all stock traded in the US used his products. Keller served as COO for Penson Execution Services from 2010-2012, where he implemented a sophisticated dark pool trading system.
In 2012 Apex acquired Penson. Apex is a leading provider of clearing and execution solutions to the ﬁnancial services industry. Among Keller's clients at Apex were Wealthfront, Betterment, Personal Capital, TradeKing, OptionsHouse, Zecco, FirstTrade and ThinkorSwim.
Keller leverages his vast experience and strong relationships in the ﬁnancial industry to assist the company in forming strategic partnerships. He also serves as a liaison, sourcing, communicating and collaborating with key vendors for the company.