Barclays and Nationwide to take part in third phase of FCA’s regulatory sandbox

The UK’s Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) has unveiled the firms that were successful in their applications to begin testing in the third cohort of its regulatory sandbox

The FCA has announced the names of the firms that will be taking part in the third phase of its regulatory sandbox. The FCA received 61 submissions for this phase, with 18 applications meeting the sandbox eligibility criteria.

Barclays bank came forward with a regtech proposition to track updates to regulations within the FCA Handbook and aligns their implementation to Barclays’ internal policies. Nationwide will be testing an automated solution which is to provide digital savings guidance and investment advice. Other successful applicants include Sherpa Management Services, the Malta-based insurance broker, ResonanceX, a new electronic platform, and Curl, a new consumer payment network designed around open banking APIs.

The sandbox, which launched in June 2016, allows firms to test innovative products, services or business models in a live market environment, while ensuring that appropriate protections are in place. The programme is part of Innovate, an initiative kicked off in 2014 to promote competition in the interest of consumers.

Christopher Woolard, Executive Director of Strategy and Competition at the FCA, said: “Since we first opened the sandbox, it has supported almost 70 firms in testing innovative new products and services. It is particularly encouraging that we are now seeing more applicants from outside London and a broader range of firms testing in the sandbox. As we open the application window for our next sandbox cohort, we continue to encourage applications from firms of all sizes and from a wide range of sectors, including sectors we haven’t seen heavily represented in the sandbox to date.”

The FCA is now accepting applications from firms to be part of its fourth sandbox phase. Firms have until 31 January 2018 to submit their applications.

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