On 18-19 April, the FCA facilitated a TechSprint’s event. This initiative followed the Government’s announcement in its 2015 budget that ‘the FCA, working with the PRA, to identify ways to support the adoption of new technologies to facilitate the delivery of regulatory requirements – so-called “RegTech”
As such, TechSprint aimed at bringing ideas and innovation from the FinTech community and developing practical outcomes using API-accessible data to help address the issues of access to appropriate financial services, by bringing together financial services providers and the FinTech/RegTech communities.
How it worked?
The event was hosted at KPMG’s Innovation Lab in their Canary Wharf offices, with access to the largest anonymised customer data test bed in Europe being provided by Fidor Tech (the technology arm of the Fidor Bank’s Group in Germany) via API. There were six teams in total, two of the teams were Visa Europe and Funding Circle and four of which were cross-organisational, Lloyds Banking Group, HCL Technologies, Fidor, The Post Office, and iProov.
On the second day, the teams presented their ideas in a 7 minute ‘Finovate’ style demonstration, which included linking the purpose back to the theme (what’s it for?), target market (who is it for?) and business case (how much would it cost and who would fund/ produce it?), followed by a short Q&A from the audience.
The resulting ideas ranged from prototypes to fully functioning applications. The ideas extended from mobile, tablet and laptop applications that improve access to existing financial services, to an aid that could improve SME access to business loans.
All the teams produced commercially viable ideas and won prizes for their efforts on the day.
Talking at the TechSprint, Chris Woolard, Director of Strategy and Competition at the FCA said:
“The enthusiasm, energy and creativity shown during last week’s event demonstrates that there is huge potential for collaboration between the FinTech community and those more established within the industry.
“The TechSprint was a new way of working for the FCA. Over the course of two days participants came together to generate solutions and foster innovation at pace.
“In May we will be publishing a paper on how access to financial services can be improved, and the results of last week’s event will feed into this work.”