Regulation Asia held its second annual Awards ceremony on Wednesday (13 November) at Zafferano’s in Singapore to announce the winners of the ‘Regulation Asia Awards for Excellence 2019’. The Awards programme aims to annually recognise technology companies, services providers, and market infrastructure institutions that have helped shape the regulatory landscape in Asia Pacific.
“As the regulatory environment continues to mature, with a greater focus – beyond implementation – towards quality assurance and execution. it’s clear that Asia is starting to take a greater leadership role to define the regulatory agenda and the role of technology in meeting both new and existing regulations,” said Regulation Asia Co-founder & CEO Brad Maclean.
“These awards recognise the continuing excellence of financial services institutions, market infrastructures, technology firms and service providers across the region in their work to ensure compliance with ever-changing and increasingly complex rules.”
More than 140 representatives from 60 firms attended the ceremony, including award winners, their clients, and relevant partners.
Firms were asked for written submissions to showcase client wins, new technologies and specific projects and solutions designed to meet changing regulatory requirements.
Regulation Asia’s editorial team was charged with assessing over 100 submissions received to identify those with the most merit in each category. The team conducted interviews with the shortlisted firms and some of their clients in order to obtain a more detailed picture of the strengths and weaknesses of each firm or project and enable a clear comparison between the entrants.
An external panel of 10 judges – comprising subject-matter experts from banks, associations, law firms, consulting firms – was tasked with deciding the winners in each category, based on the submissions, interview data and other supporting materials collected by the editorial team.
In the interest of independence in their evaluations, each judge made their decisions separately without any communication with each other. All the submissions, interview data, and other supporting materials collected in the Awards process were subject to confidentiality.
ONES TO WATCH
This category recognises firms for pioneering innovative technologies to solve some of the industry’s biggest regulatory challenges, but are either in an early stage of industry adoption, have a relatively new product or solution, or have yet to fully develop their Asian operations.
LeapXpert was recognised for technology that provides a complete audit trail of all interactions between company employees and their clients over several commercial messaging platforms including WeChat, Whatsapp and Line. Read more here.
Emotics was recognised for its innovative approach to compliance training engagement analytics. Its technology combines browser analytics with facial recognition and micro-expression analysis to provide insights into employee behaviour, engagement and participation during online compliance training. Read more here.
Fintech Law Firm
Boutique law firm Swartz, Binnersley & Associates was recognised for its specialist support provided to fintechs and startups, including to help launch Hong Kong’s first licenced equity crowdfunding platform and to offer advisory to robo-advisory firms and crypto exchanges. Read more here.
Client Lifecycle Management
Wealth Dynamix was recognised for providing an end-to-end digital client lifecycle management solution for wealth management which has been named as Microsoft’s preferred partner for managing wealth clients. The company opened a Singapore office late last year, its first Asian office. Read more here.
Fortia Financial Services was recognised for Innova, an AI-based system that enables end-to-end automation of regulatory requirements by capturing and interpreting policies and guidelines from legal documents.
This category recognises implementations around specific regulations or regulatory requirements, recognising projects that delivered a high value in meeting a regulatory need or requirement on time, on value and on budget.
Data Management Framework
Acies was recognised for its work to create a data framework for Axis Bank, which was needed to centralise regulatory reporting. A main factor for the judges’ selection was the breadth of Acies’ service capabilities, and its ability to support its client in the different phases of the implementation. Read more here.
IHS Markit was recognised for a regulatory capital calculation tool that has already demonstrated compliance with Basel rules for market risk (FRTB), though the rules are not due to take effect until January 2022. The tool has also been deployed at major FIs to calculate counterparty risk exposures and measure capital requirements across various financial instruments. Read more here.
BearingPoint was recognised for the implementation of its tax reporting solution – known as FiTAX – at a major global bank. The sophisticated solution enables the institution to directly prepare and submit QI, FATCA and CRS reports. Read more here.
TriOptima was recognised for its efforts to help firms in their transition away from Libor, considered one of the largest operational challenges facing the financial industry in recent history. Its solution enables large scale reduction of Libor exposures through multilateral portfolio compression as well as conversion of Libor-linked trades to alternatives. Read more here.
ISDA was recognised for its outstanding work to develop the Common Domain Model (CDM) – the first industry solution that addresses the lack of standards for how derivative trading lifecycle events and processes are represented and managed. ISDA CDM provides a foundation upon which new technologies can be built to increase automation and efficiency in derivatives markets. Read more here.
This category recognises firms that are playing a leading role in developing emerging technologies to meet regulatory requirements, specifically crediting those that are providing real working use cases of their technology.
AxiomSL was the ‘Winner’ for RegCloud, a cloud service that enables financial institutions to securely and efficiently run an array of end-to-end risk and regulatory data management and reporting solutions in the cloud. Read more here.
Finastra was ‘Highly Commended’ for FusionFabric Cloud, which opens and enables all of Finastras 60-plus core systems in the cloud, and is currently in use by firms in China, Southeast Asia and Singapore, among others.
Finastra was the ‘Winner’ for FusionFabric Cloud, a platform on which fintechs can develop new financial products and services through APIs, allowing for faster development and innovation, and collaboration with incumbent financial institutions.
Kaizen Reporting was the ‘Winner’ for its ReportShield solution, a tool developed to solve the problem of poor quality reporting. The solution checks the correctness of every data field on every transaction or trade report to ensure completeness and accuracy, while staying independent of the actual reporting process. Read more here.
AI & Machine Learning
NICE Actimize was the ‘Winner’ for its use of ground-breaking artificial intelligence to underpin SURVEIL-X, a surveillance solution that detects virtually all forms of risky behavior to ensure compliance with global regulations and minimise the risk of fines and reputational damage.
Tookitaki was ‘Highly Commended’ for its end-to-end, machine learning-powered transaction monitoring and screening solution, which looks for patterns of suspicious activity and creates smart rules maintained in a typology repository to facilitate future detection, effectively lowering money laundering risk and compliance costs for FIs.
Big Data & Analytics
A Gekko and HKEX collaboration was the ‘Winner’ for creating one of the most comprehensive and accurate databases of Hong Kong-listed company transactions and the people associated with them, to serve as a basis for analytics capabilities and improve HKEX’s internal processes. Read more here.
Audeamus Risk was ‘Highly Commended’ for a platform that enables dynamic monitoring of the risk resilience and expresses quantified information on real-time operational risk exposures in monetary values, thereby facilitating decision making by firms and dialogue with regulators. Read more here.
This category recognises solutions that are designed with specific regulatory requirements in mind, assessed on multiple criteria, including the ease and speed of implementation, flexibility, robustness, scalability, transparency, technical support, cost and return on investment for end clients.
AxiomSL was the ‘Winner’ for its enterprise data management platform for risk and regulatory reporting, which is able to ingest and integrate original source data without forcing data conversion. To do this it leverages a family of data dictionaries and a flexible data model. Read more here.
Wolters Kluwer was ‘Highly Commended’ for OneSumX Regulatory Reporting, an integrated regulatory compliance and reporting solution which uses a single source of data to ensure consistency, reconciliation and accuracy in reporting submissions.
IHS Markit was the ‘Winner’ for Markit Integrated Reporting, a reporting solution delivered in conjunction with Catena Technologies as part of the MarkitServ suite of products that supports more than 3000 financial firms. Read more here.
Broadridge was the ‘Highly Commended’ for futureLandscape, a trade and transaction reporting solution that helps firms consolidate and streamline their end-to-end reporting workflow across multiple global jurisdictions and regimes.
SmartStream Technologies was the ‘Winner’ for its Reference Data Utility (RDU), which helps firms reduce complexity in their businesses and cuts compliance costs by providing ‘true data’ as a foundation for electronic trading, automating operations and regulatory reporting. Read more here.
Regulatory Change Management
Fenergo was the ‘Winner’ for its Regulatory Rules Engine, which brings together in a single repository all the content, intelligence and rules, and makes determinations on which regulations are in-scope for a particular firm. Read more here.
Ascent Regtech was ‘Highly Commended’ for a fully traceable regulatory change management solution uses AI to map regulations to a customer’s business profile and automatically generates customers’ regulatory obligations on an ongoing basis.
SWIFT was the ‘Winner’ for its Payment Control Service (PCS), which works in real-time to allow users to detect and stop suspicious payments before they are delivered to its network. The service was launched in September 2018 as part of efforts to address industry concerns about cybersecurity and fraud. Read more here.
NICE Actimize was the ‘Winner’ for Holistic Trade Surveillance, which uses natural language processing and machine learning to enable firms to monitor 100% of communications and voice calls alongside trades to allow analysis to pinpoint market abuse, conduct risk and suspicious communications.
KPMG was the ‘Winner’ for its expertise in cybersecurity. With one of the largest cybersecurity team in APAC, its approach to investigation and remediation is grounded in a strong forensics-based foundation, focusing on preserving evidence and recovering data in the shortest time possible. Read more here.
Appway was the ‘Winner’ for a suite of solutions in use at some of the world’s largest financial institutions for onboarding, regulatory reviews, and now, a smart client update solution called Client Update, which makes it easier for users to manage material changes in a client’s status. Read more here.
Fenergo was ‘Highly Commended’ for an onboarding solution that streamlines the collection, centralisation and sharing of client and counterparty data and documentation across an institution, achieving faster onboarding and time to revenue while also enhancing the client experience. Read more here.
KYC Risk Assessment
Bureau Van Dijk – a Moody’s analytics company – was the ‘Winner’ for a Compliance Catalyst, a risk assessment tool that streamlines KYC and AML research, and allows financial institutions to quickly assess corporate groups for PEPs links and sanctions against over 1600 source lists of negative information. Read more here.
Encompass was the ‘Highly Commended’ for a solution that allows financial institutions to perform KYC analysis of their clients at onboarding, review and trigger event, while providing deep connectivity to hundreds of public and private data sources. Read more here.
Regulatory Data Management
NeoXam was the ‘Winner’ for its DataHub solution, which consolidates and centralises a securities master file fed from different sources, integrating all trades and positions for better risk and compliance monitoring. Read more here.
Dow Jones Risk & Compliance was the ‘Winner’ for the volume, breadth and accuracy of the risk and compliance data it provides to financial institutions and corporations to ensure they remain compliant with legal and regulatory obligations. Read more here.
SIX was ‘Highly Commended’ for its automated Sanctioned Securities Monitoring Service (SSMS) solution, which provides businesses an up-to-date view of their sanctions risk exposure 24/7.
Refinitiv was the ‘Winner’ for World Check One, which helps firms perform KYC verification against financial crime, bribery and corruption, and allows its them to take a targeted approach to AML screening. Read more here.
Exiger was ‘Highly Commended’ for DDIQ, an AI-based automated due diligence, screening and risk analysis platform that accelerates and enhances risk assessment relating to clients, investments, transactions, third parties and counterparties. Read more here.
Initial Margin Compliance
ISDA was the ‘Winner’ for Create – IM, a solution that makes the initial margin contract negotiation process more efficient and less time costly, a significant achievement as the deadline approaches for an increasing number of firms to comply with the final phases of initial margin rules. Read more here.
TriOptima was ‘Highly Commended’ for triResolve Margin, in use at over 170 clients to automate margin processing, increase operational efficiency, reduce costs and address the complexities of margin rules. Read more here.
Culture & Conduct Risk Management
Starling Trust Sciences was the ‘Winner’ for a regtech solution that examines interactions between employees at scale using electronic communications metadata, to identify patterns that correlate to behaviour that drives performance, misconduct or compliance failures.
This category recognises firms that are integral to financial services at the industry level, providing services to financial institutions, technology firms, regulators, market participants and a range of other stakeholders.
Exchange of the Year
SGX was the ‘Winner’ for its targeted approach to market regulation, for demonstrating a commitment to moving from an ‘ecosystem’ approach to a ‘community’ approach, and for its willingness to partner with the industry to raise standards across the board. Read more here.
Consulting Firm of the Year
PwC was the ‘Winner’ for stand-out performances in risk and regulatory advisory and implementation services, data governance, financial risk management and quantitative modelling, forensics, dispute advisory and financial crime. Read more here.
Synpulse was ‘Highly Commended’ for demonstrating strong leadership and competencies in helping its clients work out strategies and operationalising them through to technical implementation, in the areas of operational performance, regulatory compliance, risk management. Read more here.
Market Infrastructure of the Year
DTCC was the ‘Winner’ for its Global Trade Repository service in key markets Hong Kong, Singapore, Australia and Japan. A key highlight for the year was the launch of the GTR 2.0 APAC Portal, which provides users direct electronic access to query the data stored in the repository. Read more here.
Law Firm of the Year
Herbert Smith Freehills was the ‘Winner’ for its expertise in handling complex and sensitive regulatory investigations and its advisory offerings. It also became one of only six international law firms to receive approval to form a joint operation in the Shanghai Free Trade Zone. Read more here.
Data Provider of the Year
Moody’s Analytics was the ‘Winner’ for Data Alliance, a database which draws from more than 100 million financial statements representing 20 million private firms globally to augment lenders’ internal datasets and cover data quality gaps and improve credit risk management. Read more here.
SIX was ‘Highly Commended’ for its comprehensive sanctions and watchlist checks, which monitor over 6.7 million active instruments and well over 26,000 changes a week. In July, the company launched a service which has already identified and listed over 100,000 securities connected to Marijuana Related Business.
Compliance Training of the Year
ACAMS was the ‘Winner’ for demonstrating a commitment to enhancing the knowledge, skills and expertise of financial crime compliance professionals across the world through its highly-regarded events platform and its training and CAMS certification programme. Read more here.
Regulation Asia would like to offer our sincerest thanks to our judges for their hard work throughout the judging process. The judges included Philip Keller, Brian Tang, Derek McGibney, Matthieu Sachot, Grace Chong, Catherine Simmons, and four others who asked to remain anonymous.
In recognition of the considerable effort that was put in from across the industry to participate in the Awards programme, we would also like to thank all the teams from all the firms who entered the awards. For firms that did not win, we encourage you to reach out to our editorial team to learn some of the judges’ insights that were recorded in the decision processes.
Regulation Asia is honoured to have developed the Awards platform in a way that meaningfully recognises the work the industry does each year to keep up with rapidly changing regulatory requirements.
To see the 2018 winners, click here.