PwC is bolstering its regulatory compliance business with the acquisition of anti-money laundering and sanctions screening tool KYC-Pro from Irish consultancy FSCom.
KYC-Pro enables customers access to over 127 million companies worldwide, conduct individual AML checks across more than 20 countries and cross reference potential customers against international PEPs and Sanctions lists.
PwC says the acquisition will strengthen its business in the burgeoning financial crime arena. The firm points to research which suggests that by 2020, European banks will spend more than €1 billion annually on their KYC management.
PwC partner, Ian McConnell says: “We are always on the lookout to invest in cutting-edge technologies which help our clients to grow their businesses.
“AI and automation can deliver significant benefits for organisations and people and, by incorporating KYC-Pro to our existing regulatory compliance offering, it complements the significant presence we already have in the financial crime operations space."
Four years ago, PwC was fined $25 million by New York State's financial watchdog after it sanitised a report for regulators into anti-money laundering at Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi UFJ (BTMU). In addition to the fine, PwC's regulatory consultancy business was banned for two years from working for banks regulated by the New York State Department of Financial Services
For FSCom, the sale was motivated by a desire to focus its activities on its consultancy practice and leave the software business to fresh-faced RegTech startups.
Philip Creed, director at FSCom comments: “The rapid expansion of the fintech industry and continued changes in regulation require that we focus our efforts on our core consulting business. Through PwC, KYC-Pro has the potential to become a global brand, that offers compliance officers peace of mind both in terms of its accuracy and regulatory compliance.”