Feb 9, 2021

AutoRek chosen for UK DIT’s RegTech Roadshow in the US

William Girling
2 min
AutoRek chosen for UK DIT’s RegTech Roadshow in the US
Scottish regtech AutoRek has been selected by the UK Government’s Department of International Trade (DIT) for a US-bound business showcase...

AutoRek was founded in 1994 and has positioned itself at the forefront of data management ever since. Focusing on delivering solutions for the insurance, banking and asset management sectors, the company offers a broad suite of solutions that have found use at some of the world’s largest organisations. 

DIT RegTech Roadshow

Held between 22 and 26 February in a series of virtual events, the DIT’s ‘Regtech Roadshow’ was conceived as an opportunity for 10 UK-based companies in the sector to meet key stakeholders, potentially develop partnerships, and receive expert advice. 

Qualification to make the shortlist was described by AutoRek as “highly competitive”. Each company had to meet the following criteria:

  • 10 or more employees
  • Annual turnover of at least £1m
  • An ‘enterprise-ready’ solution
  • Existing client bases in both the UK and US

The UK was recently ranked as being second only to the US in terms of fintech capital funding in 2020. This development from the government could be viewed as a mission to maintain that momentum into 2021 and beyond. Kunal Khatri, Director for DIT North America, said:

“The UK has been at the heart of the global financial services innovation for decades, and in 2021 we will continue to lead the global fintech and regtech revolution. We’re excited to showcase the talent and expertise that UK companies have to offer. 

“This roadshow is a great opportunity to deepen our bilateral engagement on financial services with the US and encourage private sector collaboration to make the world a safer, easier, and more equitable place to do business.”

Demonstrating regtech’s potential

AutoRek made significant gains in its US business at the end of last year when it signed a partnership with Florida-based financial services company iSoftware4Banks

CEO Gordon McHarg called AutoRek’s opportunity in the DIT RegTech Roadshow an “exciting and valuable opportunity” for the company to prove its mettle at a prestigious event.

“We have proven success in the UK and are accustomed to working with global financial services firms and are looking forward to helping revolutionise the way US companies manage risk, compliance and regulatory change,” he said.

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May 28, 2021

FCA bans ‘price walking’ for insurers from Jan 2022

3 min
The City regulator has said insurers must not raise prices at renewal and penalise loyal customers

Insurers will no longer be allowed to raise premiums upon annual customer renewals following a new ruling by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA)

The new move, which comes into effect in January 2022, will directly affect people renewing their home or motor insurance because they will pay no more for their premiums than a new customer. 

The FCA said the change will save loyal customers an estimated £4.2bn over a 10-year-period. However, it also admitted the move could mean cheaper deals for new customers can no longer be sustainable for insurers attempting to attract business. 

Price walking practices ended

According to reports, the FCA has been working on changing the rules on ‘price walking’ as it is termed, because customers are charged more their annual premiums, even though their level of risk remains the same. The system has resulted in complaints from consumer groups that loyal customers pay more unnecessarily.

Speaking about the regulatory change, Sheldon Mills, from the FCA told the BBC

"These measures will put an end to the very high prices paid by many loyal customers. Consumers can still benefit from shopping around or negotiating with their current provider, but won't be charged more at renewal just for being an existing customer."

Victory for the customer

Consumer groups have hailed the change as a victory for customers who have ended up paying higher premiums unnecessarily, but admitted it presented huge implications for insurers in the short term.

Consumer Intelligence CEO, Ian Hughes said, “These changes represent a tsunami for both insurers and their customers, but we should be in no doubt that the fault line that sits underneath this is fair value, mentioned 153 times in the final statement. GIPP changes will feel like just a ripple for those who don’t offer fair value to customers."

He continued, “This is going to be a bumpy ride for insurance brands and consumers alike in the short term. Today, the FCA has revealed that cash and cash-equivalent incentives, other than toys and carbon off setting, cannot be used to entice new customers without being offered to renewing customers. This means the savviest consumers who shop around each year will see prices rise and discounts and offers disappear.

“However, there is an opportunity for the industry to take advantage of all this change that is coming and do something that will be good for brands, good for the industry and good for consumers."

Consumer Intelligence PR and communications manager, Catherine Carey agreed, and described the victory as “a shot in the arm for innovation.”

Carey said the move “presses a giant reset button on the relationship between price and value, it will change the relationship between brands and consumers.”

She explained, “We expect to see insurers changing their models and new firms entering the market for the first time as loss-making year one pricing phases out. If you look at these new rules, and specifically the introduction of fair value, it’s the most exciting time for the development of the general insurance market for decades.”

Hughes also warned against insurers resisting the regulatory change, “Those that don’t take advantage of the opportunity are going to find it really tough.”

He added, “The tipping point we find ourselves at today is a critical point in the journey of this industry and there is an opportunity to be positive.”


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