The Western Union Company (NYSE: WU), a leader in global money transfer and payments services, is teaming up with the Department for International Trade (DIT) to host 16 ‘RegTech’ industry leaders in a ‘RegTech’ Lunch and Learn session during Fintech Week NYC.
The unique session will provide a platform for collaborative discussion on the advancement of trade, the changing regulatory environment, and the role of compliance in international business. It is part of a week-long DIT trade mission, the first of its kind, to New York’s Empire Start-ups Fintech Week and forms part of the UK Government’s ‘Innovation is GREAT’ campaign. The campaign aims to inspire more global businesses to take advantage of the UK’s leading capabilities in the technology and innovation sector.
‘RegTech’, which refers to a group of companies that use technology to help businesses comply with regulations, has been on the increase in the years since the 2008 financial crisis as more technology-driven products to enhance the customer experience and engagement are sought after by financial institutions.
International Trade Minister, Mark Garnier, said: “UK firms are leading the way in finding innovative technology solutions to help businesses comply with regulation. Following hot on the heels of the UK-India FinTech conference in Mumbai and the International FinTech conference in London, my department is working with Western Union to ensure the UK is well represented at RegTech in New York and together we will ensure UK tech companies take advantage of the global opportunities in this growing sector.”
The collaboration comes at a time when regulation, compliance and global trade are of a key focus for small to medium businesses on both sides of the Atlantic. The recent Western Union International Trade Monitor* revealed nearly a third (30%) of UK SMEs, and nearly a fifth (18%) of US SMEs’ are concerned about the impact of changing international regulation and compliance.
The research also highlighted that in light of the EU referendum, while businesses showed little sign of increasing their company’s international operations, over 80% of UK SMEs are placing an increased focus on international vendors and supply chains, emphasizing the shift towards global trade partnerships rather than a direct physical presence abroad.
Kerry Agiasotis, President at Western Union Business Solutions said: “In an ever changing regulatory landscape, the role of compliance has never been more important. As world leaders in technology and innovation, this trade mission is a fantastic opportunity for US firms to learn from some of the UK RegTech industry’s brightest minds. This initiative, in addition to our new ‘WU® EDGE’ platform, demonstrates our dedication to providing SMEs with the tools necessary to engage with global trade”.
Western Union Business Solutions is one of several other financial companies including the five major banks – Barclays, HSBC, Lloyds, RBS and Santander, and four consultancies – EY, KPMG, Deloitte and PwC, who are all helping potential exporters make the most of international trade opportunities through a partnership with Department for International Trade.