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Britain should overhaul listings to boost its $15 billion fintech sector post-Brexit, review says

Icons for the Monzo and Starling banking apps on a smartphone.

Adrian Dennis | AFP via Getty Images

LONDON — The U.K. should reform listings rules and visa applications to help its £11 billion ($15.3 billion) fintech sector thrive after Brexit, a government-commissioned review said Friday.

Britain is one of the leading players in fintech globally, attracting $4.1 billion in venture capital investment last year, according to industry body Innovate Finance. It’s home to several fintech unicorns — private firms worth over $1 billion — including, Revolut and Monzo.

The review, led by former Worldpay boss Ron Kalifa, makes a number of notable proposals, including: the creation of a new fast-tracked visa process to attract international fintech talent; a £1 billion start-up fund backed by institutional investors; and a relaxing of rules around listings to encourage late-stage fintechs to go public.

“This review will make an important contribution to our plan to retain the UK’s fintech crown, create more skilled jobs, and deliver better financial services for people and businesses,” said Finance Minister Rishi Sunak.

Kalifa said: “We must continue to nurture our start-up culture, but crucially we must also give our high growth firms the support to become global giants.”

Listings review

The government has tasked Lord Hill, the former EU commissioner for financial stability, with leading a review of the U.K.’s listings regime. Prime Minister Boris Johnson reportedly met with executives from Deliveroo, Revolut and other tech firms late last year in a bid to convince them to list in London.

Kalifa’s report suggests a reduction in the percentage of shares in the hands of public investors to avoid diluting fintech start-ups’ early backers, as well as “gold