RiskSave is now three years old and continuously expanding across multiple specialities. 2018 saw us move into profitability and external funding offered from Scottish Enterprise.
Originally started as a Digital Asset Manager, RiskSave has since become a provider of RegTech and innovation services to other asset management firms. Our compliance arm is an award-winning provider of regulatory solutions for Private Equity managers, Hedge Funds and a wide array of other financial institutions. With a background in technology we specialise in providing integrated low-cost solutions to ambitious and demanding firms.
Our experience in launching a regulated financial services firm led us to launch a Regulatory Incubator or Appointed Representative Service.
By using our FCA umbrella and compliance expertise, our clients are able to provide financial services to all clients across Europe much faster than a traditional direct authorisation approach. Our internal expertise in compliance means we can now offer these services to other FS firms, and our clients currently include both FinTechs and traditional asset managers. RiskSave provide a complete outsourced compliance service to businesses old and new. Projects have included simple advice on policy design and documentation, to the more extensive day-to-day monitoring of key regulatory processes.
We’ve also created a Risk Reporting and analytics platform, and are helping a number of clients meet their regulatory obligations around PRIIPs KID. We provide an end-to-end solution including proxy construction, where appropriate, total cost calculations, scenario analysis and single risk indicator calculations.
So all told, we’ve been pretty busy and the business has developed in ways we’d never have foreseen.
We’ve moved from being a specialised (although Digital) asset manager, to a provider of compliance and regulation expertise, winning numerous awards in Compliance and RegTech. We’ve also moved from a money losing tech startup, to a profitable compliance firm, which was nice, but somewhat unexpected. We’re now beginning the process of scaling.
We’ve had access to a wide array of individual expertise and support. I’m in regular contact with many of our crowd and their support has both been valuable and appreciated. Our crowd have stayed with us and many are keen to invest again, but we’re very happy that our initial seed funding has been enough to move us into profitability. (It’s very unfashionable for a FinTech Startup to be profitable, but we are coping with the shame at conferences!)
I’m a keen reader and occasional writer for Altfi.com, which keeps me up to date with FinTech news. Keeping up to date with the ever changing regulatory landscape is more tricky, and I’m spending a surprising amount of time reading and re-reading legal opinions. However, we’re completely focused on staying ahead of the curve on behalf of our clients, as we are generating a reputation as being best-in-class for regulatory hosting (Appointed Representative Services) and I am to keep this.
I’ve been writing extensively across many media outlets, and helping to define both WealthTech and RegTech for the London School of Economics has made us highly visible in the FinTech community. One of the issues we have been looking at recently has been Green Finance and how regulation can help us move toward a green economy. Our team has been working with Plenitude.io in their application to join the FCA’s Green Incubator, a project I was proud to be a part of.
As we enter the largest intergenerational wealth transfer ever from baby boomers to millennials, it is likely that the wealth management sectors new client base will think about their investments differently. Currently, the industry looks at investment as a simple payoff between risk and return, but younger (and older!) consumers of financial products are interested in more than simple financial metrics, and often look to engage with their investments. Several clients have been developing products to meet this demand. We are also likely to see more products that are explicitly green, and where ethical factors contribute to the investment decision
This year, RiskSave begins the process of scaling. We are planning to open a second office in Edinburgh. We have been talking to Scottish Enterprise and have had the grant offer refreshed (as of February 19). We are working with a team at Scotland House (in London) and a case officer in Edinburgh that assist firms moving to Scotland. This grant will enable us to accelerate our growth. We are now in a position where we are generating capital internally (with some revenue lines not being turned on yet), and will use the Scottish funding to create a low-cost operations center for what we'd like to think is the best FinTech compliance firm in the country (we have been nominated for various compliance awards in the hedge fund industry already).
It’s been an interesting three years, and I’m looking forward to the next.