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Almost everything we are doing is brand new for Akuna, providing our employees with endless opportunities for individual growth and ownership.

Whether it’s market dynamics, mathematical models or new technologies, we are applying new logic that has not previously been used in the company.

If you are passionate about innovation, are committed to making a meaningful impact at Akuna and have a desire to win, we invite you to apply for one of our open positions.

We provide both internship and full-time positions for students and recent graduates, as well as more advanced roles for experienced talent.

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Find your fit with Akuna by selecting your exprience level, department and location or view our full listing of jobs.

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Akunacademy

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Internship Program

Each summer, Akuna offers internships across our Development, Quant, Trading, and IT Infrastructure teams.

Interns who excel in the Akunacademy program have the opportunity to convert their internship into a full-time role with Akuna after graduation.

Internship Roles

If you are interested in algorithms, performance engineering, data capture and analysis, trading infrastructure or exchange gateways, you’ll love Akunacademy.

Quant internships expose you to the financial markets where you’ll gain experience on anything from identifying and defining significant algorithm improvements, our trading strategies, pricing models, execution logic and performance optimization.

No prior trading knowledge is required. At Akunacademy we’ll teach you how to leverage our proprietary technology while implementing a variety of trading strategies. We love bright, math-savvy, competitive and ambitious interns with a strong desire to learn.

If you want to learn what it takes to support the heart of a trading firm, this is where you want to be. We’ll teach you how to design, build and support low latency servers, networks, workstations and cloud deployments in a fast-paced environment through scripting and automation.

Hiring Process

Interview processes may vary slightly dependent on office location and level of experience.

  • "I heard that the industry is very secretive, even within a company, so I was positively surprised that Akuna was so collaborative."

    Intern, Trading
  • "Everyone is very friendly and helpful and excited about new ideas. I think Akuna clearly works hard to make interns feel welcomed and cared for, which was so important!"

    Intern, Development
  • "The best -part of the internship was going from no options background to trading in the real market in 10 weeks. I was really impressed with the organization of the internship. Our tasks were always clearly defined and engaging."

    Intern, Trading
  • "I love the Akuna atmosphere; it's relaxed, but at the same time everyone is very focused on improving the company."

    Intern, Trading
  • "The numerous intern and company activities were great, all of them really helped me feel like I was really with Akuna."

    Intern, Trading
  • "[As compared to other internships]...interns at Akuna are given way more responsibility than any internship I had before!"

    Intern, Development
  • "I think Akuna clearly works hard to make interns feel welcomed and cared for, which was so important!"

    Intern, Development
  • "I really appreciated that the work we were doing was actually important to the company."

    Intern, Development

Options 101 Course

Akuna is excited to offer our very own Options 101 Course! This free and educational course is open year-round to all who are interested in learning the basics of our niche industry, covering everything from open outcry and electronic market basics to an in-depth section on option greeks.

FAQs

What does "Akuna" mean?

Akuna Capital derives its name from Akuna Bay in Australia, where our CEO Andrew spent many weekends cycling and forming the concepts that would guide Akuna Capital’s future. The name “Akuna” comes from the Aboriginal word meaning “flowing water”; a word that exists in no other language. We also like to draw comparisons to the fact that we provide “liquidity” in the markets and that we are a firm where ideas “flow” freely from every member of the team.

How many people work for Akuna Capital?

Akuna currently has more than 450 employees worldwide, including our Chicago headquarters and additional offices in Boston, Sydney, Shanghai and Hong Kong.

I am moving to a new city, what do you do in terms of social activities to help me make friends and discover my new home?

We believe it is important to know your coworkers outside of the office, so our employees enjoy an extensive array of company-sponsored events, including weekend trips, sports teams and clubs, Friday happy hours, and outdoor summer events in and around the city.

I know Akuna does options market making, what does that mean?

Market Making means that we quote prices at which we are willing to both buy and sell options. This means we are providing liquidity to the market and making markets more efficient. To do this across thousands of instruments, we need to continuously develop our trading systems to react to information from the markets and to effectively manage risk.

Check out our free Options 101 Course if you are interested in learning more!

What do you trade & what exchanges are you connected to?

Akuna trades options on a wide range of underlyings including Indices, Commodities, Currencies and Treasuries. We trade on a number of US and Asian exchanges including CME, ICE, CFE, CBOE, C2, BATS, EDGX, ISE, Gemini, MIAX Pearl, HKEX, KRX and NOM, and are continuing to expand our trading operations globally. We are also very active in the Cryptocurrency space, trading spot, futures and options on exchanges and OTC, covering all of the major coins.

Are you a high frequency trading firm?

HFT has many definitions. Akuna is latency-sensitive and looks to utilize the fastest FPGA, software, hardware and connectivity available to execute trades. It is not a pure HFT futures or equities business – options and their complexity allow for many more strategies than pure latency arbitrage.

What distinguishes Akuna Capital from other similar firms?

Akuna is one of the very few options market makers to successfully enter the market in the last five years. Our competitors are mature businesses that have access to markets worldwide. We are still building, accessing new markets, trading new products and creating new strategies, giving you the opportunity to build things from the ground up.

What is the career progression like for employees at Akuna?

It is typical to lose the Junior title after about 2 years and then gain the Senior title 3 years after that. However, if your performance is great, the timing can be shorter. You can progress year to year, so even in a non-promotion year, you can still see material growth in responsibility as well as base and bonus compensation.

How should I apply?

If you are passionate about innovation and committed to making a meaningful impact at Akuna, please see our Campus and Experienced roles and apply for those that interest you most.

Do you accept international students/sponsor visas?

If you are an international student, your application will be given full consideration. Akuna provides sponsorship to future employees depending on the job offer and the qualifications of the candidate. We sponsor several visa types for full-time and intern employment and candidate qualifications are assessed in accordance with local immigration regulations.

How many employees are you hiring this year?

In order to maintain our high selection standards, we review thousands of applications per year to build our Experienced, Junior, and Akunacademy Intern classes. As we are still growing and show no signs of slowing down, we are continuing to hire top tier candidates based on the yearly needs of our teams.

I heard that candidates are asked to complete an online test and/or recorded interview, why do you do this?

At Akuna we know that you are more than the contents of your resume. We use various tools (depending on the role) to assess our candidates’ skills and qualifications. For example, Trading candidates complete math and personality assessments, whereas Quant and Dev candidates complete a coding challenge. We also occasionally use web interviews, which may seem strange at first, but it gives us the chance to get to know you better and understand your thought process. All of these tools allow us to be as efficient as possible in moving candidates through the process.

What's it like to work on the Development team at Akuna, and who will I be working with?

Our Development team delivers fast, reliable, scalable and highly-optimized code within a collaborative environment. As a member of the Development Team, you will work alongside other Developers, many with deep experience in the industrywhile closely collaborating with members of our Trading and Quant teams. You will have the opportunity to design and implement solutions that meet the needs of a competitive trading environment. Unlike at some larger or more siloed firms, you will gain direct exposure to the overall business and have real impact on advancing Akuna’s trading and financial systems forward. 

What is a typical day like as a Developer?

Most mornings consist of onsite or remote logins and email/Slack catch-ups before joining your team for a stand-up meeting to discuss project progress and raise any topics or questions for further discussion.  

The remainder of the day may be spent working across a variety of areas including writing, testing, and debugging code, reviewing and providing feedback on teammates’ pull requests, discussing requirements with Traders for upcoming projects, or working with our Trade Support team to release a new component into production. 

What is your training program for new employees?

  • Interns: Our Development Internship is anchored around a challenging development project that will deliver real value to the firm by the time you’re done. You’ll experience a balance of focused project work, combined with classroom training, and opportunities to gain exposure to many other parts of the firm.
  • Juniors: Junior Developers begin with a small-scale project to help you get comfortable and familiarize yourself with our systems. This will be combined with more general training opportunities across a variety of technical and trading-specific topics. As you build up experience and demonstrate your ability, we gradually increase project complexity and responsibility.
  • Experienced: Our Experienced Developers follow a similar onboarding process as our campus hires, although at an accelerated pace depending on your specific background and prior experience. You and your manager can identify the set of general and Akuna-specific training courses and topics that would be valuable, and tailor your on-boarding process accordingly. This will take shape through a mix of self-directed learning mentorship from other team members.

What is the development process like for Developers at Akuna?

The development timelines at Akuna are relatively short, the collaboration is high, and the feedback is nearly instantaneous as our ability to move fast is crucial to our continued success. Collaboration is key to efficiently developing the solutions the company needs and ifundamental to how our Development process works. Our feedback cycles are largely datadriven so that we can see if the solution you put in place is achieving the results we expected and in a performant way. We are constantly iterating and evolving our platform based on real-world results and data.   

What computer language(s) should I know for the Development roles?

Akuna’s philosophy is to use the best tool for the job, so we use a variety of languages across various parts of the firm. C++ and Python are the most widely used languages across our Development teams, but we also use JavaScript and C# for web and desktop applications, Scala within our Data Engineering teams, and Verilog within our FPGA Hardware Development team. 

What are some advantages to not having customers, and how does that affect what I do as a Developer?

Not having customers means that we only worry about what Akuna needs rather than having to design solutions for every single kind of end user. Although we do have rigorous procedures to ensure that our code is safe to release, there is also no need to put our technology through months of testing before hitting the market. This means our new features are being deployed much quicker than at Big Tech firm with millions of customers. The best part is that the feedback is instantaneous and comes directly from people near you. 

What can I read to prepare for the job/industry?

Many of our Devs have read and recommend the following technical books: “Code Complete” by Steve McConnell, “Clean Code” by Robert C. Martin, “The Pragmatic Programmer” by Andrew Hunt & David Thomas, “Principles of Compiler Design” by Alfred V. Aho & Jeffrey D. Ullman, “The C++ Programming Language” by Bjarne Stroustrup, “Effective Python” by Brett Slatkin, “Designing Data-Intensive Applications” by Martin Kleppmann, and “Effective Modern C++” by Scott Meyers. 

What's it like to work on the Quant team at Akuna, and who will I be working with?

Our Quants are self-motivated and interested in finding the best solution to every problem. Working across every aspect of Akuna’s system, you will connect with both traders and developers to innovate on data analysis, modeling, and strategies. As the firm’s architects of automation and machine learning, you will push the limits of exploration while greatly increasing the productivity of our trading team. From hypothesis to research and prototyping you are given the opportunity to challenge yourself, learn from experts and expand Akuna’s reach into new forms of liquidity.

What is a typical day like as a Quant?

Upon morning arrival, check over systems and tools that you are responsible for to make sure they are working as expected and turn on strategies and monitor their trading performance on the side. Group meetings are held later in the morning to review goals for the day and any issues from the day before. The remainder of the day is spent on project work and interactions with Traders and Developers to better understand the problem at hand. 

What is your training program for new employees?

  • Interns: Quant interns will go through the trader training curriculum. A selection of modelling  topics will be covered ranging from more classical option theory materials to portfolio  construction and high frequency trading. One real-world project will be finished under a senior  team member’s supervision. It is optional to work on one exploratory project in addition to the  real-world one where you can either experiment a new trading style or simply a new technique  on the same strategy. 
  • Juniors: Junior Quants will go over a similar training process with the quant interns. After that  period, junior quants will focus on one specific area or strategy which will serve as a knowledge  base for them to expand the understanding to the entire trading/research workflow. 
  • Experienced: In addition to learning to use Akuna’s models and trading/research platform, we  periodically hold seminars to share knowledge and learning materials on a wide range of  technical topics. 

What is the development process like for Quants at Akuna?

The development timelines at Akuna are relatively short, the collaboration is high, and the feedback in instantaneous. On the Quant team, we try to keep the time frame from idea, to analysis, to implementation short. The quick turnaround allows us to test out new ideas quickly, and find out which ones work best. We also systematically test our code and follow development best practices to ensure accuracy, reliability, and robustness of our code.

What computer language(s) should I know for the Quant roles?

All of Akuna’s Quant teams work in Python, and C++ experience is an added bonus for Quant Research/ Machine Learning positions.

What can I read to prepare for the job/industry?

Many of our Quants have read and strongly recommend “Clean Code: A Handbook of Agile Software Craftsmanship” by Robert C. Martin, “Statistics Done Wrong: The Woefully Complete Guide” by Alex Reinhart, and “Python for Data Analysis: Data Wrangling with Pandas, NumPy, and Ipython” by Wes McKinney.

What's it like to work on the Trading team at Akuna, and who will I be working with?

Our Traders are highly competitive individuals who have a passion for finding solutions to complex problems. As a Trader, you will work in a fast-paced and constantly evolving landscape of financial markets. You will work directly with our Senior Traders to make trading decisions and manage risk while also working alongside the Development and Quant teams at Akuna to design new trading strategies and tools used by all desks.

What is a typical day like as a Trader?

A typical day for our Traders begins by checking overnight news upon arrivalfollowed by a team position review and risks discussion. As soon as the markets open, trading begins. After market close, Traders partake in a review of the trading day, attend training sessions, and work on strategy analysis and projects. 

What is your training program for new employees? When do I get to trade?

  • Interns: Our Trading Interns go through an accelerated version of our Junior Trader training program. Led by our dedicate Co-Heads of Trader Training, our program includes option theory, systems training, trading strategy, risk management, and hands-on trading simulations.  
  • Juniors: No prior options or trading knowledge is necessary as Junior Traders undertake a 9-month rotation beginning with a 12-week group training program. Led by some of our top Senior Traders, the program includes option theory, systems training, trading strategy, risk management, data analysis, quant modeling and hands-on trading simulations. Junior Traders then graduate into real-time trading rotations and a one-on-one mentorship with a Senior Trader. 
  • Experienced: From day 1, experienced hires will familiarize themselves with Akuna’s systems and trading strategies. We look to bring experienced Traders onto teams where they will learn side-by-side with a Senior Trader and provide immediate value-add to our Trading team.  

What computer language(s) should I know for the Trading roles?

Programming knowledge is not required for Options Market Making roles, but along with statistics and higher level math, programming is helpful for project work. Python programming is required for Intern and Full Time Quant Trading roles, and C++ is considered a plus.

Do I need any certifications to be a Junior Trader/Intern at Akuna?

There are no certifications required to be considered for a Junior/Intern role at Akuna. Once you begin working as a full-time Junior Trader, you will be required to take and pass the Series 57 exam.

What can I read to prepare for the job/industry?

Many of our Traders have read and strongly recommend “Options Volatility and Pricing” by Sheldon Natenberg. Although not strictly related to trading, many of our Traders also enjoyed “Fooled by Randomness” by Nassim Taleb and “Thinking, Fast and Slow” by Daniel Kahneman.

What’s it like to work on the IT Infrastructure team at Akuna, and who will I be working with?

Infrastructure is exactly that, the core on which the trading system is built and where every piece of software the company uses resides. This means you will be working with people from every department in Akuna (Trading, Development, Quant, Business Operations) on a regular basis. You will need to gain an understanding of the different needs and requirements of these disparate teams, to be flexible and to think on your feet.

What is a typical day like as a member of the IT Infrastructure team?

IT Infrastructure has a key front-line (Trading) responsibility, as well as executing on longer term engineering projects. Being close to Trading means your typical day can vary based on market conditions and world events –making for an exciting day-to-day experience. This is balanced against our project work where the team constantly strives to improve and automate our existing infrastructure and scale to new products, strategies and markets.

What is training your training program like for new employees?

  • Interns: Our IT interns get immersed in real-world challenges by helping to buildout the summertime working environment for Akuna and getting into a specifically tailored project.  You’ll start the first week bringing fellow interns either into the office(s) or online, followed by project in one of five different groups in IT’s: Trading Systems, Systems Engineering, Networking, DevOps or Desktop. Here you’ll finish out the internship working side-by-side with industry engineers to complete and present your project to the team.    
  • Juniors: Juniors joining IT are put into an operational setting to learn the tools and trade craft of a high paced, demanding yet rewarding environment.  You’ll learn to script and automate smaller parts of the job while honing your skills on smaller projects to help achieve operational success. 
  • Experienced: New hires at this level will be put into a 4-week operational rotation to get a deep understanding of how our system works, the tools needed to support them and the various process and procedures for operational success.  After your rotation you, along with your manager, will identify projects to enhance or expand operations and work side-by-side with your fellow engineers. 

What computer language(s) should I know for the IT Infrastructure roles?

Akuna’s IT Infrastructure team mainly works in Python, Bash, and YAML.

What can I read to prepare for the job/industry?

Many of our IT Infra team members have read and strongly recommend “The Checklist Manifesto” by Atul Gawande, “Extreme Ownership” by Jocko Wilink & Leif Babin, “The Phoenix Project” by Gene Kim, Kevin Behr, & George Spafford, “Flashboys” by Michael Lewis, “How to Take Smart Notes” by Sonke Abrens, and “Site Reliability Engineering” by O’Reilly Media