UK Investment Management Industry and FinTech

By Jonathan Lawrence

The UK Treasury recently published its Investment Management Strategy II Report. Building on its 2013 strategy report ‒ which mainly focused on how to improve the UK as a fund domicile ‒ this report sets out the UK government’s strategy to build upon the success of the UK’s investment management industry in the long-term.

One chapter is devoted to FinTech. The government is keen to see FinTech and asset management firms utilising the Financial Conduct Authority’s (FCA) Project Innovate, engaging early with the regulator to gain tailored regulatory support and test innovative products in a safe place. It also encourages the sector to take advantage of the FinTech bridges established between the UK to its global partners. Since 2015, the government has established four ‘FinTech Bridges’ – with Singapore, the Republic of Korea, China and Hong Kong. FinTech Bridges provide opportunities for firms to scale up their UK FinTech innovations, internationally. By establishing links between government, regulators and private sectors, FinTech bridges reduce the barriers to entry in a new jurisdiction and link UK FinTech firms to international investment opportunities. The UK’s FinTech Bridges all contain regulatory co-operation agreements negotiated between the FCA and their regulatory counterparts.

The summary of outputs with regard to investment management and FinTech are that the UK government:

  • encourages The Investment Association to make rapid progress in seeking to establish a digital fund
  • strongly supports the development of the Asset Management Cyber Security Strategy and the Investment Association’s thought leadership on this issue
  • welcomes the commitment of the FCA and asset management industry in developing standard definitions to facilitate the promotion of innovation in the asset management industry
  • will host a second international FinTech Conference in 2018, building on the success of the 2017 inaugural conference.

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