City of London Corporation and FCA assist innovative companies in tackling coronavirus challenges

The City of London Corporation and the Financial Conduct Authority have opened the application window for their digital sandbox pilot (https://www.digitalsandboxpilot.co.uk), to support innovative firms tackling challenges caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Applications for the pilot of a new digital sandbox initiative are being welcomed from today, with an emphasis on supporting products and solutions that will assist consumers and firms affected by the pandemic. The application window will close on 30 October.

Three key areas - preventing fraud and scams, supporting the financial resilience of vulnerable consumers, and improving access to finance for small and medium sized enterprises - have been identified as particular areas of importance for the City of London Corporation and the FCA.

The digital sandbox pilot aims to support earlier stage innovation where products and solutions are still in development and not at the stage where they are ready to be tested with consumers.

The software and infrastructure for the Digital Sandbox Pilot is being developed by Fintech Sandpit, and Grant Thornton UK LLP is providing project management support and will be running an evaluation of the pilot’s success.

Policy Chair at the City of London Corporation Catherine McGuinness said:

“I’m delighted that the application window for the digital sandbox pilot is now open.

“Innovation across the financial services sector will be a key asset for the UK as we lead the way in driving the economic recovery forwards, and this sandbox is a great opportunity to support new ideas that will bring benefits for global businesses and consumers alike.

“I urge business who may benefit from this to sign up today.”

FCA Director of Innovation Nick Cook said:

“Supporting and fostering innovation will be critical as we tackle some of the medium-term challenges arising from the coronavirus pandemic. This pilot will help innovative firms make the crucial jump from idea to solution and assist new propositions to come to market.

“Regulators, large incumbents and start-ups all have our part to play in helping consumers affected by the crisis. We are pleased to be continuing our collaboration with the City of London Corporation on this important initiative”.


Notes to editors

The City of London Corporation is the governing body of the Square Mile dedicated to a vibrant and thriving City, supporting a diverse and sustainable London within a globally-successful UK. www.cityoflondon.gov.uk