Streamlining Investment Guideline process through Imperium Compliance

Imperium Compliance Limited has 20 years of experience by providing a range of services to the clients in the UK and Internationally. Imperium has explored a range of areas from software management to provide guideline consultations to know that the clients are performing efficiently at all levels. The main aim of Imperium Compliance Limited is to provide a seamless automated process of integrating guideline review with rule coding with all guidelines. They are creating truly global products that will harness the existing resources and tool them with the right amount of ingenuity for future success whilst to help reduce the operational overheads. Following are the excerpts from the Interview with Spencer Landau.

You are the leaders in Regulatory Technologies – How do you define the term Regtech?

I define the term as software designed to assist the automation and streamlining of regulatory tasks performed within financial institutions.

How big is your team and who are the critical players in your journey to build the successful Regtech company?

Our team is 4 so far. I as CEO am currently responsible for most tasks such as Product Development, Business Development and fundraising, but I have support from trusted advisors and consultants who are helping me. Sqndy Puri who was the first external investor in Imperium Compliance has worked very closely with me and is helping to put together a first class team as well as initially investing the funds which enabled us to build our MVP.

Brief overview about your product/service offering?

We offer our Product Imperium which is delivered as a SaaS. The product is designed to be used by Investment Managers in the niche area of Investment Guidelines which is usually the responsibility of Risk and Compliance Teams. Investment Guidelines are legally binding rules which are set out by Institutional Investors such as Pension Funds and Sovereign Wealth Funds (the clients of Investment Managers) in Investment Management Agreements. An Investment Management Agreement is a legal contract between an Investment Manager and their clients. Investment Guidelines are also defined by Regulators in the form of the regulatory regimes such as UCITS or 1940 Act for example. Investment Guidelines limit the way in which Investment Managers invest the money entrusted to them and limits the risk of the clients. When guidelines are breached there can be serious consequences to the Investment Manager such as compensation paid to clients, fines and sanctions by regulators.

Currently the Investment Guidelines management process involves skilled individuals reading through large legal documents such as Investment Management Agreements and Prospectuses, identifying the guidelines, extracting them, interpreting them, and then codifying them into an Order Management System which can then produce alerts of a guideline is in danger of being breached. This process is very time-consuming and susceptible to human error.

Our product Imperium uses Natural Language Processing to automatically identify Investment Guidelines within a document, extracts them, creates a summary, and then can match the guideline to the rules coded in the Order Management System. This significantly reduces the time to process the guidelines with and potential errors.

What inspired you to build the above product?

I have spent over 20 years working with Investment Guidelines with many institutions in a variety of different roles and became frustrated that the process was the same at each institution I worked at, and there was very little in the market which could help guidelines professional perform their role more efficiently.

What was the most challenging/critical aspect of your journey as the CEO of  Imperium Compliance Limited?

There are many challenging aspects of running a start-up, but I guess the most challenging is trying to convince large financial institutions to look differently at how they are currently addressing operational tasks. Investment Managers are starting to take notice of new technologies and new ideas, but it is taking a long time and since the sales cycles are so long it can be particularly challenging for a very small company to get some traction.

How did you overcome initial mindset challenges of the regulators/supervisors?

It is difficult and a slow process but the only answer is to persevere if you believe that your solution can add value.

Where do you see yourself in the next three years?

If all goes well, we will have at least 10 clients who are happy to pay us to use our product and are gaining significant benefits from doing so.

Which countries do you feel you can expand to with your offerings?

Any developed financial market with a robust regulatory regime including the U.S. Canada, EU, Hong Kong, Singapore and Australia.

Your thoughts on use of technologies like AI, Blockchain, RPA, Machine Learning in Regulatory Domain.

These technologies should revolutionize the way that regulations are managed and move institutions away from manual process and spreadsheets. This should result in more work being performed by fewer individuals in a more efficient way and when regulations are better understood and adhered to it makes a safer environment for financial institutions, their clients and the markets as a whole.