Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) received 68 applications to cohort 6 of the regulatory sandbox. Applications came from firms operating in the UK and overseas. Primarily, applications came from firms looking to operate in the retail banking, payments and retail lending sectors.
„For cohort 6, we called out, for the first time, areas where we would like to see more innovation. This included propositions that ‘make finance work for everyone’ and ‘support the UK in the move to a greener economy”, according to the press release.
More than half of the applications received were propositions that seek to address issues around access and exclusion to financial services and vulnerable consumers, with two successful applicants developing sustainable finance models.
„The propositions in cohort 6 support what we believe is the increased demand for digital offerings created by the impact of coronavirus (Covid-19),” FCA said.
Examples of propositions that have been accepted into cohort 6 include financial education platforms, a digitised motor finance proposition, safekeeping and transacting of digital assets using distributed ledger technology and a sustainable finance investment platform, which enables the mobilisation of capital towards green projects.
Tests will be conducted on a short-term and small-scale basis.
Firms that have been accepted to test in the regulatory sandbox are listed below.
|Cohort 6 firms||Description|
|AgeWage||A way of understanding a pension pot using a value for money score. The test measures how understanding can empower savers to find and compare other pensions and turn pots into retirement plans.|
|AID:Tech||A blockchain based e-money platform that enables verified digital identity holders to allocate and trace payments, funds and donations to reduce fraud.|
|DLA Piper||A RegTech proposition that develops a rules-based methodology to digitally manage regulatory compliance with regards to the issuance of digital assets.|
|Climate chain||An app to encourage consumers to spend their money on sustainable products and services. Utilising Open Banking to track users’ spending habits, users will be rewarded with discounts at partner retailers for spending habits which are aligned to meeting net-zero emissions targets.|
|CrediCar||An intelligent digital lending platform for the used car industry. The white label platform allows financial providers and car dealers to provide consumers open access to finance products, personalised finance quotes suited to their individual credit risk and affordability profiles, and the ability for the consumer to finance and buy a used car through the platform.|
|Crowdz UK||SMEs invoice financing platform using smart contracts on blockchain to tokenise invoices and re-route payments.|
|Faizpay||A multichannel payment initiation service for merchants combining a Near Field Communication (NFC) card with any smartphone or tablet, enabling in-store and e-commerce transactions.|
|Fronted||A rental deposit cash advance to help people move. Fronted uses Open Banking to make better lending decisions, reduce costs to UK consumers and improve social mobility.|
|FundAdminChain||A private distributed ledger network providing a market platform for launching and trading collective investment funds, allowing investors and product providers to connect, transact and settle at lower cost and with less friction.|
|HipayUK||Hipay will be partnering with Alipay (Alibaba), Wechat Pay (Tencent) and other payment institutions to provide a contact free QR code payment solution for public transport across the UK. The test aims to provide users with a diversified cross-border payment e-wallet platform which promotes value, convenience and accessibility for all UK users.|
|Hitachi Europe Limited||The ‘Sustainable Finance Platform’ aims to facilitate the mobilisation of capital towards green projects through a ‘matching function’ between investors or lenders and project owners. The prototype uses the ‘Internet of Things’ to communicate operational information about green assets and blockchain for enhanced transparency and security.|
|HUB Financial Solutions||A low cost automated, initial and ongoing advice service developed for people approaching and in retirement with modest pension savings.|
|Huozhi||A platform that facilitates the funding, by customers, of essential goods and services for families, paid workers and businesses in crisis zones where formal financial services are unavailable.|
|Mintago||A financial wellbeing platform provided by employers that gives their employees the education and tools to plan their financial future and better understand the short and long-term trade-offs of their spending.|
|Moneyfold||DLT based e-money solution enabling pay-to-URL by turning a website address into a destination for receiving money.|
|My Ahmed Ltd||A Sharia compliant e-money platform with a Zakat donation calculation tool serving the Muslim community.|
|Nest Insight||Automatic enrolment into a payroll deduction emergency savings tool linked to workplace pensions via a roll-over feature, which aims to support increased short-term financial resilience while also increasing pension contributions.|
|NestEgg||A mobile app and software platform using Financial Health Indicators to transform the way lending decisions are made and improve vulnerable borrowers’ financial health and credit profile.|
|Project Pyctor||Pyctor, a project led by ING Bank in collaboration with ABN AMRO, BNP Paribas Securities Services, Invesco, Societe Generale – Forge, State Street, UBS and others, is a decentralised permission network that aims to provide digital asset safekeeping and transaction services, with a focus on regulated security tokens issued either on private or public blockchain.|
|StudentFinance||A digital platform to finance higher education tuition fees through ‘Income Share Agreement’, a flexible model where students pay a percentage of their income when earning above a minimum income threshold. Student Finance uses machine learning to determine students’ employability and future earning projections.|
|Weather Solutions||A parametric weather insurance product that compensates for heightened energy costs during colder than normal winters.|
|YourBlock||A consumer privacy focused platform that provides secure tools for consumers to store and make use of their personal data to access financial products and services, starting with motor insurance.|
„Tendinţele pe care le-am remarcat înainte de începerea pandemiei s-au accelerat pe perioada stării de urgenţă. Am văzut acest lucru ca o oportunitate, un tipping point pentru bancă. Post-pandemie nu avem cum sa ne întoarcem la comportamentul financiar pe care îl aveam până în februarie a.c. Relaţia românilor cu online-ul s-a schimbat. In plus, cardul fizic se va dematerializa. Vom asista la o scădere a cererii pentru cardurile fizice, respectiv la o creştere a preferinţei pentru componenta digitală a acestora.”