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TeX Register goes live for UK savings and investment industry

Published on 07 Feb 2013

The TeX Register, built and operated by SWIFT on behalf of the Tax Incentivised Savings Association, is a secure database that will give assurance to TeX members that counterparties have signed the standard contract applicable to all members, that they will adhere to common message standards and abide by the TeX Service Level Agreements. By centralising the contract process, it will reduce cost and risk for financial industry participants.

“This is a significant milestone for the industry as the Register marks the start of the first live transfers between member firms. We are pleased to be working with SWIFT who were selected because of the robustness of their processes and their track record."— Stephen Mohan, Managing Director of Cofunds and Chairman of the TeX Supervisory Council

The Retail Distribution Review (RDR) is one of the largest ever regulatory changes to the UK's savings and investments marketplace. It came into force in December 2012 as a key part of the Financial Services Authority's continued consumer protection strategy. RDR establishes a resilient, effective and attractive retail investment market that consumers can trust at a time when they need more help and advice than ever with their retirement and investment planning.

For the last three years, SWIFT has been working with the Tax Incentivised Savings Association (TISA) on an industry initiative that will enable firms to meet the requirement within the RDR to provide re-registration of assets in a timely manner. Firms will use ISO 20022 funds messages across SWIFTNet to transfer assets and wrappers between platforms of all types.

TISA has also launched the TISA Exchange (TeX) service to enable firms to meet the requirement within the RDR to provide re-registration of assets. TeX - which provides common standards to cover the liability issues, service level agreements and a dispute resolution process - has achieved cross-industry support and agreement to use standard messages to transfer assets and wrappers between platforms of all types.

The FSA’s Retail Distribution Review, Consultation Paper 10/29, stated that: “We intend to introduce a rule to make it compulsory for platforms to allow assets to be re-registered off their platform no later than the implementation of the RDR on 31 December 2012”.

A key part of the initiative is the TeX Register, a secure database providing contact details for each member and delivers the assurance to TeX members that counterparties have signed the standard contract applicable to all members, that they will adhere to common message standards and abide by the TeX Service Level Agreements. Designed to provide certainty for customers that re-registration is being completed to an agreed industry standard, TeX will also significantly reduce industry costs and risks by removing the need for each platform, nominee, TPA and fund company to have individually agreed contract terms covering transfers.

After a competitive tender, SWIFT was appointed as the operator of the TeX Register and is responsible for its integrity and on-going maintenance. The service went live in January with 38 of the most important UK fund players already signed up. This follows the first live electronic account transfers and fund re-registrations over SWIFT in December 2012. 

“Providing the financial community with mission critical infrastructure and services has always been the lifeblood of SWIFT. Powering the TeX contract club fits perfectly with SWIFT’s ongoing commitment to streamline global fund distribution."— Edward Glyn, Head of Funds, EMEA at SWIFT

Stephen Mohan, Managing Director of Cofunds and Chairman of the TeX Supervisory Council said: "This is a significant milestone for the industry as the Register marks the start of the first live transfers between member firms. We are pleased to be working with SWIFT who were selected because of the robustness of their processes and their track record of providing this type of service for financial institutions. Unsurprisingly we had a number of expressions of interest from potential operators."

Edward Glyn, Head of Funds, EMEA at SWIFT commented: "Providing the financial community with mission critical infrastructure and services has always been the lifeblood of SWIFT. The TISA re-registration initiative will play a crucial part in the long term health of the retail investment services marketplace and powering the TeX contract club fits perfectly with SWIFT's ongoing commitment to streamline global fund distribution."