How do you define the term Suptech ?
“SupTech refers to the technology that supports supervisors. The Bank for International Settlements (BIS) defines Suptech as the use of innovative technology by supervisory agencies to support supervision. Vizor has been supplying enterprise software to financial supervisors for over 18 years so we were delivering Suptech solutions well before the term was coined.”
How is Suptech different from Regtech ?
“Regtech addresses the needs of the Financial Institutions. The market has exploded in recent years and is estimated to be worth over $100B annually with an extensive ecosystem of suppliers. Suptech, on the other hand, is a smaller niche market which serves the needs of regulators and other supervisors. Most legacy technology used by supervisors has come about through in-house development or bespoke system development which has been expensive and time-consuming. The wider availability of Suptech solutions presents an opportunity for supervisors to benefit from new technology at a much-reduced cost of ownership.
How big is your team and who are the critical players ?
“Today, Vizor has a team of 80 people. The company was established in 2000 by a group of highly experienced ex-financial regulators and successful IT industry veterans. The result has been almost two decades of successful software implementations for many of the world’s leading supervisory authorities. Deep collaboration with these authorities has been fundamental to establishing Vizor Software as the most comprehensive and robust out-of-the-box solution for a broad range of supervisory challenges. Our team has a unique level of domain expertise in the world of financial supervision and cross-border information sharing for tax authorities, built-up by supporting projects for supervisory authorities in over 25 countries across the globe.
Brief overview about your product/service offering ?
“Vizor Software is a state-of-the-art supervision system, developed over the past 18 years to be the most comprehensive, robust supervision platform available, specifically designed and engineered to meet the ever-evolving and changing requirements demanded by financial regulators across the globe. Vizor Software represents an extremely flexible and extendable solution, ensuring the system can and will adapt to meet the current and future needs of financial regulators. Our off-the-shelf software provides a single solution to support the entire supervisory life cycle: from registration and authorization, through to returns data collection and analysis, and on to on-site inspections, dissemination of data, and risk profiling. Our software provides a single, strategic regulatory supervisory platform.
What inspired you to build the above product ?
“When Vizor was founded in 2000, we saw that Financial Supervisors were under-served by technology companies and set about addressing this gap. Early success with some of the world’s leading regulators shaped our product concept. Our team derives tremendous satisfaction from the impact our solution makes in strengthening financial supervision. Given our sustained focus on the needs of financial supervisors, we now have an extensive community of users. The strong involvement of these customers through our user groups continues to inform our product innovation and road-map.”
What was the most challenging/critical aspect of your journey as the CEO of Vizor?
“The most challenging aspect was moving from an early project focus to becoming a product software company. It is always possible to address the requirements of individual customers but to grow a successful company we needed to ensure we addressed a wider market need. We have since proved this market for Suptech and our customers benefit from the collective investment in our product suite. To build an organisation capable of scaling, we set about developing the senior management team. We now have an experienced leadership team in place to innovate and grow while reliably delivering on our product and service commitments.”
How did you overcome initial mindset challenges of the regulators?
“It is true to say that initially financial supervisors were more comfortable with in-house development projects. In fact, many had large development teams in-house to work on such projects. However, the pace of change in supervision has really accelerated since the financial crisis 10 years ago. In order to address these requirements in a flexible way, supervisors are increasingly looking to the private sector for product-based solutions. Our early success with some of the world’s leading central banks also helped provide confidence that our software platform could fulfill the needs of even the most demanding supervisors.”
Where do you see yourself in next three years?
“Our vision is a world of seamless data exchange between the regulated and the regulator. The result is an economically and financially more stable and prosperous world, created by financial regulators empowered by high-quality and ever-evolving data; and a simplification of the complex regulatory reporting challenge faced by financial institutions. We see enormous opportunities for Suptech to address this vision in new and innovative ways. We are increasingly collaborating with supervisors on innovation projects, in order to re-imagine how things are done. We have put in place the necessary investments in people and technology to continue to scale the business and realize this vision.”
Which countries do you feel you can expand to with your offerings ?
“We are already a global provider with projects in over 25 different countries across the globe. We see a significant opportunity for future growth but I would not single out specific countries. Much depends on the normal cycle of system replacement when new requirements are no longer able to be satisfied and/or there is a significant change in the approach to data collection.”
Have you built any consulting model for the consultants from different countries ?
“Yes, we have worked with some of the leading consulting companies such as Deloitte and Baker Tilly on joint projects. We have a service catalog with well-defined service modules which allows locally based consultants to take responsibility for one or more of these modules.”