FinTech Scotland launches inaugural innovation challenge to drive AI compliance solutions

01/02/2024
Working with Deloitte, Tesco Bank, Morgan Stanley and abrdn, FinTech Scotland is launching a first-of-its-kind innovation challenge.

FinTech Scotland, in collaboration with Deloitte, Tesco Bank, Morgan Stanley, and abrdn, has initiated the first-of-its-kind innovation challenge aimed at addressing financial regulatory challenges through the application of AI and emerging technologies. 

The challenge, led by the Financial Regulation Innovation Lab (FRIL), focuses on ‘Simplifying Compliance’ and encourages collaboration between financial institutions and innovators. Funded by the UK Government’s Innovation Accelerator programme, the initiative aims to foster responsible innovation and set new standards for technology adoption in financial services.

Nicola Anderson, CEO of FinTech Scotland, expressed excitement about the inaugural industry innovation challenge, emphasising its importance in driving positive outcomes through demand-led innovation calls. Nicola expressed, “demand-led innovation calls are an important part of the toolkit that the Financial Regulation Innovation Lab will employ to drive positive outcomes.”

The initiative seeks to bring together financial institutions and innovators to collectively enhance compliance processes, drive sector efficiency, and ensure increased consumer protection.

Deloitte, as one of the challenge supporters, views the initiative as critical in delivering change in financial services, particularly in simplifying compliance. The FRIL’s unique environment supports collaboration, providing financial services firms with the opportunity to innovate and meet their regulatory obligations effectively.

Kent Mackenzie, Fintech Lead for Scotland at Deloitte said, “the Lab provides a unique environment to support collaboration, and this groundbreaking initiative will further support how financial services firms are innovating to meet their regulatory obligations.”

Tesco Bank’s Head of Regulatory Affairs, Joanne Seagrave, highlighted the opportunity to collaborate with innovators to gain insights into utilising AI and emerging technologies for managing the evolving regulatory change landscape.

Morgan Stanley, represented by Angela Benson, Head of Glasgow Finance, recognizes the potential of AI and emerging technologies in addressing global regulatory obligations. They emphasised, “this collaboration is a testament to our commitment to seizing the ongoing opportunities that financial services and innovation present.”The collaboration with FinTech Scotland on this innovation challenge aims to foster ideation and support the next generation of innovators in this space.

Gareth Murphy, Chief Risk Officer at abrdn said,  “This collaboration is a testament to our commitment to seizing the ongoing opportunities that financial services and innovation present.” They expressed delight in joining the FRIL’s inaugural innovation call, emphasising the importance of evolving people, processes, and technology in financial services activities. The collaboration demonstrates abrdn’s commitment to seizing opportunities in financial services and innovation.

The programme comprises three phases: challenge definition, solution design & testing, and final demonstrations. Innovators and fintechs are encouraged to join the challenge, with a grant award of up to £50,000 available for successful companies. The application window opened on 1st February, and the Innovation Challenge Call finale event is scheduled for April 2024.

Funded by the Glasgow City Region Innovation Accelerator programme, the FRIL project is part of Innovate UK’s Innovation Accelerator programme, investing £100m in 26 transformative R&D projects to support regional economic growth. Glasgow, with its history of industry and innovation, is positioned to benefit from the programme’s support for increased productivity, inclusive growth, and achieving net zero.

In conclusion, the collaborative initiative led by FinTech Scotland and its partners aims to drive responsible innovation in financial services, leveraging AI and emerging technologies to address regulatory challenges and set new standards for the industry.

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