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Equiniti opens its brand new FinTech innovation centre in Cardiff

Thu 21 May 2015

Launch event showcases a number of new initiatives

The Welsh Government’s strategy to develop one the largest financial and professional services sectors outside of London received a welcome boost today when Equinti, one of the UK’s leading technology, investment, pensions and payment companies, opened its brand new FinTech innovation centre.

Located in Cardiff’s newly developed ‘Capital Quarter’ within Central Cardiff Enterprise Zone, the centre was officially opened by Edwina Hart, the Welsh Minister for Economy, Science and Transport, and will serve as a hub from which Equiniti will continue to develop its core offering of innovative FinTech solutions.

Equiniti’s technology keep things running smoothly for some of the best-known brands and public sector organisations in the UK, with services benefiting more than 30 million people in the UK and 180 countries around the world. The firm is one the UK’s leading share registrars; working with more than 50% of the FTSE 100. The Group also processes £90billion of payments per year and manages pension administration services for more than eight million people.

Uniquely, Equiniti owns all of the technology required to run its core operations and used the launch of the FinTech Innovation Centre to showcase a number of new initiatives. This included demonstrations of its multi-lingual platform capabilities and device agnostic portals for employee share plans, online applications for the recently acquired execution-only stockbroking platform Selftrade and web/mobile management of pension benefits via ‘Compendia Touch’.

Commenting at the opening Edwina Hartstated: “We are delighted that Equiniti has decided to locate the core of its innovation activities in Cardiff and warmly welcome this strategically important investment in one of our key sectors. We are committed to commercial and educational technology development, making this the ideal place for the businesses to grow. We look forward to supporting Equiniti as it continues to build a world-class financial technology business in Cardiff.”

With current regulatory demand placing pressure on financial firms to develop smart technology that puts consumer interests at the heart of what they offer, the business is focused on adding capabilities that address their clients’ problems in the digital age.

This has led to significant investment in Equiniti’s 25 group-wide technology platforms reveals Equiniti Chief Executive Guy Wakeley. “We believe that Cardiff offers compelling opportunities to develop ground-breaking technology products and systems for our clients, providing a strategic centre to complement London’s well-established position as a technology hub,” he said.

“With Cardiff University also announcing a £300m investment in four research centres, it has become clear that Cardiff is now a city of choice for companies looking to expand or relocate. This is further underpinned by the Welsh Government’s commitment to develop one of the largest financial and professional services sectors outside of London.”

Equiniti already has a strong legacy of supporting the Welsh economy and as a local employer. The newly rebranded Xanite, formerly peterevans, has been based in Cardiff for the past 30 years and is one of two key businesses that will now operate from the new centre.

Xanite provides custody, investment and wealth management platforms supporting sharedealing for retail investors and corporate clients. The platform delivers custodian services for £18.7 billion of assets.

The second, Equinti Hazell Carr - the resourcing arm of Equiniti - has had a Welsh presence for over 15 years. The firm provides specialist interim resource to help firms operating within regulatory markets manage complex remediation and rectification projects, for example payment protection insurance (PPI), complaints and regulatory change.

With more than 35% of contractors currently on projects comprising of graduates and a unique graduate ‘Academy Solution’ scheme provides well-paid work placements for the best talent in Cardiff, Equiniti Hazell Carr offers a stepping stone to financial technology careers.

Also based in Cardiff is FairMoney, the leading comparison website of loan products from certified fair lenders, specialising in those customers experiencing difficulty in sourcing finance.

Fairmoney is powered by Equiniti Pancredit’s loan decision engine and uses Smart Search Technology to profile the applicant and deliver affordability checks, without leaving a credit footprint. The site puts customers first and seeks to redress the balance between business and society, unlike other comparison sites which by default tend to favour tariffs that earn them commission.