FCA Update: FCA to launch enhanced Financial Services Register & New Fintech Development Platform


FCA to launch enhanced Financial Services Register

On 27 July 2020, the FCA will replace the existing Financial Services Register with a new enhanced version. The Register will be updated with a new look and include improvements the FCA has made in response to user feedback, such as making it easier to find and understand information.

The FCA will provide more information on the changes once the enhanced version of the Register launches. The FCA has advised that users will need to update any links they have to pages within the current Register, as all present links will be redirected to the enhanced Register’s homepage. The current Register will no longer be available from 6 pm on Friday 24 July to allow work to take place over the weekend and ensure that the enhanced Register is ready for the start of business on Monday 27 July.

The FCA also remains committed to publishing and maintaining a directory of certified and assessed persons on the Financial Services Register under the Senior Managers and Certification Regime (SM&CR). The directory was originally going to be published in March of this year. However, in light of COVID-19 and operational challenges when processing some bulk data file submissions from dual regulated firms at peak periods, the directory will be published later this year.

Banks, building societies, credit unions and insurance companies can continue to update the information on their past and present certified employees for inclusion in the directory when it launches later this year. However, firms can also wait to submit their data until the FCA has confirmed a publication date. The FCA will contact firms with any important updates and will provide firms with advance notice before publishing the data.

The FCA previously announced that it is extending the deadline to submit information about Directory Persons from 9 December 2020 to 31 March 2021. However, the FCA will begin publishing details of certified persons of solo-regulated firms from 9 December onwards once information has been submitted. Therefore, firms are encouraged to provide information on certified persons before March 2021, where they are able to do so.

FCA and City of London Corporation launch new Fintech development platform

The FCA and the City of London Corporation have announced that they will collaborate on a new project that will support fintech firms to develop new technologies as part of an initiative to mitigate the impact of the COVID pandemic.

The platform will act as a testing environment and allow firms to access important data and expertise to develop these new technologies.

The platform had been in the works before the COVID pandemic, but will now launch in a  pilot phase that is targeted at firms which are looking to play a role in mitigating the impact of COVID on the sector. During this initial phase, the focus will be on fraud prevention, supporting vulnerable consumers who may lack support during the pandemic and improving access to finance for SME’s that have been impacted by COVID.

This new collaboration continues the track record of both organisations in supporting innovation and new technologies as the future of the financial services industry, including through the Innovate and TechSprint programme.

Alongside this new initiative, the FCA will be hosting a DataSprint event between 20 July and 10 August this year. The initiative will bring together experts and data scientists to produce the data sets that will be crucial to the success of the platform once it launches later this year.

How can we help?

At Laven, our consultants are on hand to help identify the actions your firm needs to take to ensure you are compliant and aware of all the risks outlined in this update. Whether this is through assisting with new policies and procedures that need to be put in place or providing online training for staff to make them fully aware of the regulatory burden.

Laven has also built Laven Tech software solution that leverages advanced technology combined with our vast subject matter expertise. Laven Tech is designed to assist fund managers, service providers and investors to meet today’s growing demands.

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