You are here: Home - News -

Barclays, Nationwide and API-driven payment network join FCA’s ‘Innovate’ sandbox

  • 05/12/2017
  • 0
Barclays, Nationwide and API-driven payment network join FCA’s ‘Innovate’ sandbox
Barclays and Nationwide are among the 18 applicants accepted by the regulator into the next group of regulatory sandbox technology-driven innovators.

Barclays is developing a regtech tool, which tracks regulation updates from the FCA Handbook and ‘aligns their implementation’ to internal policy and Nationwide is developing an automated savings and investment advice software.

Curl, a payments software operating around an open banking-driven API is another tool selected from 61 applicants to test its products in a safe space with live consumers and built-in safeguards, regulatory consultation and supervision and potentially easier access to finance.

The FCA is inviting the next and fourth wave of regulated and unregulated applicants with a clear objective, for example, to reduce costs for consumers, to apply before the 31 January 2018.

The sandbox – a first for regulators worldwide – 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.”


Digital innovators

Other software tools include Blockchain-based payment services, general insurance, Anti-Money Laundering controls, biometric digital ID and Know Your Customer (KYC) verification.

For example, Chynge is a cross-border money remittance system that incorporates a transaction monitoring system which is powered by a virtual, artificial-intelligence compliance bot which aims to tackle money laundering, terrorism financing, and fraud more efficiently.

First Direct and Bud are working on an app which learns customer behaviour from transactional and demographic data to identify product needs from HSBC and external information sources. Other innovators include a tool called Solidi, which is a blockchain-based payments platform that harnesses cryptocurrencies to move money faster and more cheaply and another tool, Wrisk, is a usage-based contents insurance product with ‘innovative’ risk-scoring.

Sandbox learnings

The regulator published a series of findings from its first three sandbox groups in October and Experian, which was in the second cohort, is still testing a mortgage eligibility tool it developed and launched in September this year.

The tool, which sits on credit reference agency Experian’s website, aims to speed up and simplify a consumer’s application process by offering a research tool at the information-gathering stage and signposts the borrower on to seek advice from intermediaries. The pilot includes six lenders: Barclays, Aldermore, Family BS, West Brom, Leeds BS and Platform.

The function will help people find out which mortgages they are likely to be accepted for and how much they could borrow, based on the limited pool of lenders’ criteria.

Experian confirmed it had no firm plans for the tool during the pilot phase.

There are 0 Comment(s)

You may also be interested in

Business Skills

In this section, we offer short ‘how to’ guides on harder to crack areas of business. From social media, to regulation or niche product areas, we cover it all.


Our journalists interview key industry entrepreneurs, strategists and commentators for day-to-day market insight and a strategic view of where the industry is heading. We offer lessons for success and explore the opportunities for your business

Success in Practice

Here, we share case studies fleshing out best practice to help you decide what could work for your business. Take a look at how others approached complex tasks like launching a new mortgage lender, advising on a new product area or deciding to specialise in another. Learn from others mistakes and triumphs.


Each week, we ask top mortgage and property commentators with a unique perspective to examine a key news headline, market move or regulatory or political issue.


Vote in our weekly poll here. It’s your chance to tell us what you think and be heard on the top news stories of the week. Review our archive to find out what your industry really thinks and all our coverage of the results.

Top Comments

Be part of the conversation on Mortgage Solutions. We want to hear from you. We have a tool called Disqus to tell us which stories get the most comments each week. Every Friday, the team picks the most thoughtful or opinionated contributions from our readers to enjoy again. Don’t forget to share your favourite stories from the site on social media to keep the conversation going.
  • RT @robjupp: Great day yesterday for donations to @MortSleepOut. With Gift Aid, we are now close to £17,000. It would be great to get to £2…

Read previous post:
Brokers more positive about UK economy than customers – survey

Mortgage brokers are more positive than their clients about prospects for the UK economy, but only just – and neither...