Westminster Business Forum

Since lockdown, we have been organising our full programme of conferences online. We will continue online until further notice, to ensure we play our part in helping our employees and delegates to remain safe during this time. We are pleased that so many key stakeholders, policymakers and other interested parties - both old friends and new delegates - are taking up the opportunity to discuss public policy issues and network at our impartial seminars. New events are coming on to our conference programme all the time. So there are plenty of opportunities for you to join us if you haven’t already, from wherever you are. For booking-related queries, or information on speaking, please email us at info@forumsupport.co.uk or contact us using one of the following numbers: +44 (0)7951044809 / +44 (0)7503591880 / +44 (0)7538736244.
For delegates already booked on, we will send you the online joining instructions (including links, event numbers and passwords) five working days before your conference. If you cannot find these in your inbox please email delegate.relations@forumsupport.co.uk

Fintech in the UK and priorities for the independent strategic review - supporting innovation and growth, and next steps for regulation

Morning, Tuesday, 1st December 2020


***Full-scale policy conference taking place online***

This conference will examine key issues for the future of UK fintech.


The independent Strategic Fintech Review

The seminar will be an opportunity to discuss the Review, which has been commissioned by the Government to assess how the UK can continue to foster innovation in fintech, support businesses in the sector, and create an environment for its continuing success.


There will be a keynote address from the Review’s Chair, Ron Kalifa, with the discussion taking place as the Review nears its conclusion prior to publication in early 2021. The CEO of Innovate Finance, Charlotte Crosswell, is also a keynote speaker.


Key stakeholders and policymakers will assess priorities for the Review’s recommendations, which address three key objectives: ensuring that:

  • UK fintech has the resources to grow and succeed
  • fintech solutions are adopted on a widespread scale
  • the fintech industry in the UK advances its reputation internationally

Those attending will also look at work that the Financial Conduct Authority is doing to support innovation within the fintech sector, with a keynote address from Nick Cook, Director of Innovation, FCA.


Key developments and areas for discussion:

Overall discussion will focus on:

  • regulation and innovation - what is needed from the regulatory framework to respond to new financial products, platforms, and models - and how can it continue to support innovation
  • fostering growth - priorities, next steps, roles and responsibilities for building the FinTech sector
  • the direction of policy - following the Independent Review

Regulation and innovation

  • the FCA’s fintech focus and initiatives, with discussion on:
    • keeping pace - ensuring that the regulatory framework can develop alongside rapid innovation in the fintech sector
    • resources - that the Authority says are needed to adapt regulation to address concerns around the increasing use of AI, big data, and crypto-assets
    • initiatives - looking at progress on the FCA’s Green FinTech Challenge, its work on assessing opportunities and risks arising from open finance, and its regulation of cryptoassets
  • the Bank of England’s plans - we expect discussion on the Bank’s commitments to support digital payments, develop regtech and data strategies, and  utilise AI and other leading edge technologies to help firms increase their operational resilience as part of its Future of Finance project
  • the regulatory balance - assessing the way forward for both:
    • supporting innovation - aims that the regulatory regime should not unduly hamper the ability of firms to grow and develop new technologies, products, services and ways of working
    • protecting consumers - responding to concerns that accelerating use of digital platforms may increase risks of mis-selling, financial scams, and marginalising digitally-excluded consumers
  • resilience and tackling financial crime - what else is needed from policymakers and regulators to support the adoption of new innovations that would enhance capabilities in these areas

Policy, avenues for sector growth and potential barriers

  • Brexit - what is required from the independent Review recommendations to ensure the UK continues to lead Europe in this sector without complicating opportunities for investment from the European Union and globally
  • COVID-19  - what can be learnt from what the impact of the pandemic on fintech, demonstrating both:
    • the advantages of fintech in providing funds quickly, safely, and transparently when needed compared to traditional financial institutions
    • the sector’s precariousness when capital disappears
  • exporting of UK fintech, discussing options for:
    • expanding the existing fintech bridges to Australia and Singapore
    • developing further bridges and access to key international markets
    • strategies to support London’s position as a leading exporter of fintech to the EU post-Brexit
  • developing the domestic growth of fintech across the UK - including issues around
    • regional development and investment, following a recent survey highlighting concerns that fintech founders feel excluded from government investment schemes and expect further challenges accessing funding due to COVID-19
    • tackling harassment and promoting diversity, with the launch of the ‘fintech for all charter’ in response to reports of gender-based harassment and pay disparity in the sector
    • removing barriers to market entry, growth, and collaboration
    • attracting and developing the skills the sector needs into the future

The agenda:

  • The independent fintech strategic review - establishing industry priorities and findings so far
  • Diversifying the workforce, developing skills, and attracting foreign talent
  • Advancing the international attractiveness of the UK fintech market
  • Encouraging investment, supporting regional development and enabling industry growth
  • Future priorities for regulation, fostering innovation and promoting competition

Policy officials attending:

Our forums are known for attracting strong interest from policymakers and stakeholders. Places have been reserved by officials from BEIS and HMRC.


Overall, we expect speakers and other participants to be a senior and informed group including Members of both Houses of Parliament, senior government officials involved in this area of public policy, together with a range of representatives from the financial services sector - such as banks, building societies, payment service providers, paytechs, insurers, retail and commercial lenders and alternative finance providers, crypto asset providers, crowd funding businesses, big data analytics firms, credit reference agencies, AI, machine learning and cognitive computing experts, robo advice and wealthtech providers - as well as technology and regulatory experts, trade associations, consumer bodies, and reporters from the national and specialist media.


This is a full-scale conference taking place online***

  • full, four-hour programme including comfort breaks - you’ll also get a full recording to refer back to
  • information-rich discussion involving key policymakers and stakeholders
  • conference materials provided in advance, including speaker biographies
  • speakers presenting via webcam, accompanied by slides if they wish, using the Cisco WebEx professional online conference platform (easy for delegates - we’ll provide full details)
  • opportunities for live delegate questions and comments with all speakers
  • a recording of the addresses, all slides cleared by speakers, and further materials, is made available to all delegates afterwards as a permanent record of the proceedings
  • delegates are able to add their own written comments and articles following the conference, to be distributed to all attendees and more widely
  • networking too - there will be opportunities for delegates to e-meet and interact - we’ll tell you how!

Full information and guidance on how to take part will be sent to delegates before the conference



Keynote Speakers

Ron Kalifa

Review Lead, Independent Fintech Strategic Review

Charlotte Crosswell

CEO, Innovate Finance

Nick Cook

Director of Innovation, Financial Conduct Authority

Speakers

Janet Thomas

Managing Director, Infinity Capital

Jack Wilson

Head of Policy and Regulatory Affairs, TrueLayer

Tony Craddock

Director General, Emerging Payments Association

Irene Graham

Chief Executive Officer, ScaleUp Institute

Tom Chambers

Senior Manager, Technology, Robert Walters