Every Wednesday, we delve into the latest fintech updates from across the UK. This week brings updates from NatWest, Nationwide, FinTech Wales, Orenda Finance, Alloy and more.
Alloy moves to the UK
US-based identity decisioning fintech Alloy has launched in the UK, after actioning its first physical excursion to London. The ‘identity decisioning platform’ provider serves banks and other financial institutions.
The news comes shortly after a $52million Series C funding round in September 2022. Alloy has developed an API that carries out KYC, business, AML and compliance checking for financial institutions.
Edwina Johnson, head of global at Alloy, said: “For financial institutions to remain competitive in today’s market, cross-border functionality is no longer a major advantage – it’s a must. The UK is one of the world’s most powerful fintech hubs, and we can’t wait to help innovative local firms unlock their potential abroad.”
NatWest makes kids’ subscription free
NatWest‘s pocket money app Rooster Money has made its prepaid kids’ debit card subscription completely free, to customers of the bank. The offer is available to up to three children aged six to 17 per family.
The app, which enables both children and adults to manage pocket money in one account, previously charged £1.99 a month for the Rooster Card subscription. The subscription service enables parents to deposit ‘real money’ into the account, access a prepaid debit card, as well as a range of additional features.
Miles Hillier, head of youth and families banking at NatWest, commented on the move. He said: “At NatWest, we’re dedicated to supporting the younger generation at every age and stage of their life, which is why we’re thrilled to be able to extend that commitment by making NatWest Rooster Money even more accessible for NatWest customers.
“This extra benefit could help to reduce families’ outgoings during a particularly tricky time for the country, whilst giving their children the tools to build a solid financial foundation for their future.”
Twenty7tec enhances Nationwide integration
Twenty7tec has upgraded its APPLY integration with Nationwide Building Society. The integration aims to streamline application submission processes by acting as the single point of transmission for all data, documents and communications.
The upgrade looks to increase the percentage of pre-populated data shared between APPLY and Nationwide’s intermediary trading portal, NFI Online. It will also deliver a purchase Decision in Principle (DIP) certificate alongside an automated property valuation decision within the submission module.
Nathan Reilly, director of customer relationships at Twenty7tec, discussed the upgrades: “We’ve been working with the team at Nationwide for a number of years now to continually improve the application submission process for advisers. After making significant enhancements to the APPLY integration in 2022, we’re pleased to be making yet another positive step forward by delivering an even more efficient journey for users early in 2023.”
FinTech Wales adds Go.Compare to its ranks
FinTech Wales, the independent members association, has welcomed Go.Compare as the latest organisation to join their membership.
The financial services comparison site is based in Cardiff and enables consumers to compare the costs and features of a wide variety of insurance policies, financial products and energy tariffs.
Lee Griffin, CEO of Go.Compare, commented: “We are thrilled to be joining FinTech Wales membership and to be working with them on establishing a strong, unified voice for the hugely successful financial and tech services sector we hold here in Wales. I am also extremely excited to have joined the FInTech Wales Advisory Panel with so many recognised industry and academic leaders – many of whom we’ve known and admired for a long time.”
Issuing digital securities under English law
Law firm Linklaters recently assisted the UK Jurisdiction Taskforce of LawtechUK, with a new legal statement aiming to offer legal clarity for market participants in digital securities.
The UK Jurisdiction Taskforce is an industry-led initiative, created to promote the use of English law and UK jurisdiction for technology and digital innovation. The statement concluded that the existing framework of English law supports the transfer and issue of securities on blockchain or distributed ledger technology.
Richard Hay, head of fintech at Linklaters, said: “The conclusion that it is possible to issue digital securities under English law, without the need for any further legislation, is a major milestone. It brings certainty to the digital securities market as well as reinforces the role that English law plays in the UK’s continued position as a global leader in financial services.”
Orenda opens London office and unveils growth plans
Embedded financial service Orenda Finance has opened up a new office in Edgware, London as it looks to drive ambitious growth plans for the upcoming year.
In 2022, the UK fintech secured over 50 clients covering a wide range of sectors, simultaneously exceeding sales targets and growing 60 per cent year on year.
The company also grew from 6 employees to twenty over the same period. The company aims to build on this in the coming year.
Joshua Vittori, CEO of Orenda Finance, explained: “We believe that fintech shouldn’t be exclusive to financial entities, so we are passionate about helping businesses of all sizes and sectors leverage fintech in an easy, accessible, and low-cost way. Orenda’s no code, plug-n-play approach, allows our clients to prioritise a customer-centric distribution strategy rather than resourcing banking infrastructure and payments expertise. We’ve helped some great companies in 2022 and we look forward to doing the same in 2023.”