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March 2014

UK’s largest independent regulatory consultancy set to expand with BGF investment

In March 2014, BGF invested £10m for a minority stake in The Consulting Consortium (“TCC”), the UK’s largest independent regulatory and compliance consultancy.

Headquartered in London with an office in Leeds, TCC provides specialist regulatory compliance services to FCA regulated firms in the financial industry. TCC has advised over 250 financial services clients since 2001, more than 140 in the last two years including a number of FTSE 100 and multi-national companies.

Entrepreneur Joanne Smith founded TCC in 2000. With over 20 years’ experience in the financial services industry, she began her career at the Financial Services Authority (FSA) before becoming a regulatory consultant for KPMG. In establishing TCC, Joanne sought to build a consultancy business that would provide a very different style of service to that of the traditional ‘Big Four’ firms. In what is still a typically male dominated industry, females account for over half of TCC’s staff and Joanne has been credited with a number of awards for her contribution to the industry.

TCC has experienced impressive growth over the last few years and in December 2013, TCC was ranked in 45th place on the 2013 Sunday Times Virgin Fast Track 100. Its turnover in the current financial year is approaching £12m.

BGF’s growth capital investment will focus on building the firm’s marketing, personnel and infrastructure. TCC is expected to grow revenues on the back of an increasingly active FCA and through capturing market share. The value of regulatory actions brought by the FSA/FCA during 2013 revealed that fines reached a record annual total of over £472 million (source: Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer).

TCC has developed a ground-breaking proprietary risk management SaaS solution called RecordSure that monitors, records and analyses near real-time interactions between financial product sellers and customers to provide transparency, consistent reporting and compliance tools to address issues of mis-selling or other regulatory breaches.

Joanne Smith, founder and Chief Executive of TCC commented:

“BGF will provide valuable guidance and contribution in taking our company to the next level of growth. Given the ever changing regulatory environment, with financial services companies needing to remain compliant at all times with FCA regulations, our services are increasingly in demand.

“We have delivered impressive year on year growth without any institutional funding to date, but we wanted the right investment partner to help take the business to the next level. BGF stood out for us because their bank shareholders are the exactly the type of companies that we want to work for. They bring so much more than money to the equation in terms of expertise and a huge network of relevant contacts that we can access.”

Marion Bernard of BGF, commented:

“Our investment in TCC is a very exciting opportunity for BGF. The company has demonstrated its ability to deliver complex regulatory solutions and advice to major financial and consumer companies across the UK. The increased focus on maintaining high regulatory standards following a number of high profile incidents in the financial services industry over the past few years highlights the need for TCC’s expertise.

“We were also particularly excited by the new software product RecordSure, which has the potential to revolutionise the manner in which companies approach and monitor regulatory activity within their firms. We are delighted to be backing Joanne and the team, who are genuine experts in their field.”

Marion Bernard, BGF Regional Director for London and South East, joined the board on behalf of BGF.