VALK, the London and Zurich-based creators of a market-leading digital platform designed to enable users to capitalise on a global surge in private trading activity, has secured a prestigious place in the Financial Conduct Authority’s regulatory sandbox.
Launched in 2016 and widely seen as a global sandbox pioneer, the FCA regulatory sandbox is designed to help the financial services industry and the UK Fintech market, worth £11 billion, to collaborate and solve some of the industry’s most complex challenges – including the drive towards full digital transformation.
It also provides a safe test-space for companies, and the regulator, to learn how products work – normally for several months – with safeguards in place.
VALK is operating a digital end-to-end solution for investment banks, asset and fund managers as well as multi-family offices that integrate every stage of a fundraise or M&A deal onto one secure platform, which connects financial institutions and investors.
Based on the Corda Digital Ledger Technology, the product’s interoperability seamlessly digitises and automates the securities issuance process for a streamlined, efficient and more secure execution of private offers.
For this year’s FCA sandbox chosen cohort, VALK is collaborating with leading global law firm CMS on the product’s development to ensure it fully complies with all legal and regulatory requirements.
VALK co-founder, Antoine Loth, said:
“Our mission is simple. We want to bring private markets in the UK and globally into the 21st century by making them digital and securely connected, driving efficiencies and, most importantly, new revenue streams from secondary market transactions and other new opportunities that will transform and unleash the enormous potential which this trillion-dollar sector holds.
“Our success and experience to date has helped us to ensure a sought-after place in the FCA regulatory sandbox and we look forward to participating fully in this hugely beneficial and unrivalled experience as part of our growth journey.
“We warmly welcome the opportunity to test our leading digital platform solution so that we can help to bring even greater efficiency, reliability, transparency and liquidity to a market in urgent need of reform.”
For VALK, a successful exit from the sandbox will mean it ensures its products will be FCA-authorised and that its infrastructure and processes are fully compliant for regulatory standards, enabling its clients to take full advantage of its opportunities.
The company, which launched its blockchain-powered digital platform that securely automates the back-office essentials needed to facilitate the growing trade in unlisted assets in 2019, is already making waves in the fintech sector.
Backed by strategic investors such as R3 and the fintech investment vehicle of SIX Group and Generali, as well as VCs Ascension and Metavallon, the award-winning company recently celebrated a significant growth milestone after confirming that more than $1 billion of assets had been fundraised or traded on its platforms.
VALK is already servicing more than 30 institutions globally and growing at an accelerated rate.
Sam Robinson, Partner at CMS, said,
“We are delighted to have been appointed to the sandbox with VALK and being involved in the FinTech changes in the Financial Services industry and helping to drive those changes. We are excited about the opportunity to continue our relationship with VALK and its growth in the industry."
Shortlisted twice at The Asset Management Awards 2021 for Technology Provider of the Year and Asset Management Innovation of the Year, VALK was established in 2017. Earlier this month, it was nominated for this year’s Blockchain Project of the Year at the FStech awards 2021.
The brainchild of founders Antoine Loth and Elie Azzi, VALK’s mission is to make private markets in the UK digital and connected by offering a seamless end-to-end solution.
Its pioneering technology also features additional secondary market functions enabling financial intermediaries to offer increased liquidity to clients as well as access to digital exchanges.