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FCA Announces Launch of Green FinTech Challenge

On October 19, the UK Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) published a webpage announcing the launch of its “Green FinTech Challenge”, an initiative to support firms developing innovative products and services in the green, financial technology (FinTechFinTech) sector.

The Challenge is open to start-ups, incumbents and technology providers. Firms developing broader ethical, environmental, social or governance products and services also may apply, so long as there is a link with or associated benefit to the green finance agenda (for further details on the FCA’s discussion paper on green finance, see the October 19 article). The Challenge encourages firms to apply to participate if they require specific regulatory support. Applications are assessed according to the following criteria:

  1. ability to assist in the United Kingdom’s transition to a greener economy;

  2. ability to benefit UK markets and consumers; and

  3. a demonstrated need for the FCA’s Innovate services (which promote innovation in financial services by supporting innovator businesses with a range of services).

Examples of green solutions offered by firms to help them to become eligible to participate in the Challenge include:

  1. supporting capital flows and investment towards green products and services;

  2. driving efficiency in the issuance, distribution or adoption of green products and delivering new green financial products; and

  3. managing climate-related risk posed to market participants.

The deadline for applications to participate in the Challenge is January 11, 2019. Successful applicants will be notified by the end of the first quarter of 2019 and will be listed on the FCA’s website. Successful firms will benefit from dedicated advice from the FCA’s Innovate services, authorization support (if needed) and live market testing within the FCA’s “Regulatory Sandbox” (the FCA’s testing environment where technology start-ups can evaluate prototypes of their financial products in a safe environment).

The Challenge is a pilot approach for FCA Innovate. Once complete, the FCA will consider rolling out additional FinTech challenges.

The FCA’s webpage is available here.

©2020 Katten Muchin Rosenman LLPNational Law Review, Volume VIII, Number 299

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About this Author

John Ahern, Financial Attorney, London, Katten Law Firm
Partner

John Ahern, partner at Katten Muchin Rosenman UK LLP and head of the London Financial Services group, focuses his practice on banking, financial services, UK and European financial markets, and related regulations. His background in private practice and as in-house counsel at a global investment bank provides him with perspective on the unique regulatory issues facing the wholesale and private banking sectors. John advises multilateral trading facilities, broker-dealers and banks on trading, clearing and settlement as well as custody of securities—both physical and...

+44 (0) 20 7770 5253
Carolyn H. Jackson, International Attorney, Katten Muchin law firm
Partner

Carolyn Jackson is a partner in Katten Muchin Rosenman UK LLP and is a Registered Foreign Lawyer. She provides US financial regulatory legal advice to a broad range of market participants, including commercial banks, investment banks, investment managers, broker-dealers, electronic trading platforms, clearinghouses, trade associations and over-the-counter derivatives service providers.

Carolyn guides clients in the structuring and offering of complex securities, commodities and derivatives transactions and in complying with US securities and commodities laws and regulations. 

+44 0 20 7776 7625
Nathaniel Lalone, Katten Muchin Law Firm, Financial Institutions Attorney
Senior Associate

Nathaniel Lalone, a partner at Katten Muchin Rosenman UK LLP, has a broad range of experience in the regulation of financial products and financial markets, and frequently provides regulatory and compliance advice to trading venues, clearing houses and buy-side firms active in the over-the-counter (OTC) derivatives, futures and securities markets. He is actively involved in advising clients on the implementation of MiFID 2 and MiFIR in the European Union as well as the international reach of US financial services regulation. He also has significant experience with structuring...

+44 0 20 7776 7629
Neil Robson, private equity fund managers counselor, Katten Law Firm, London
Partner

Neil Robson, a regulatory and compliance partner with Katten Muchin Rosenman LLP, focuses his practice on counseling hedge and private equity fund managers and other investment advisers on operational, regulatory and compliance issues. He regularly addresses Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) and EU authorization and compliance under both the EU Alternative Investment Fund Managers Directive (AIFM Directive) and MiFID, cross-border issues in the financial services sector, market abuse, anti-money laundering and regulatory capital requirements, formations and buyouts of...

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