Regulatory Umbrella Services That Help You Get To Market Fast

Regulatory Umbrella Services that partner your start-up in the UK Financial Services Industry.

Regulatory Umbrella
Regulatory Umbrella Services

Sturgeon Ventures is Authorised and Regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA). Sturgeon provide Regulatory Umbrella Services aimed at start-up companies in the Financial Services Industry which offer services to Professional Clients. The path of a start-up in this industry can be beset by many pitfalls, but with Sturgeon as a Partner, you can focus on becoming an established and profitable business.

The FCA has created a set of regulations that are rigorous and exacting, and quite rightly so. When you are managing someone else’s wealth, you have to hold yourself to higher standards. But that doesn’t make it easy. Meeting those standards takes time and a large amount of administration. If you’re a start-up you may not have either of these in abundance. And if you’re not careful, you could find yourself putting all your energy into meeting regulatory requirements, rather than creating profit for your business. That is where we come in. Sturgeon Ventures is Authorised and Regulated by the FCA, therefore enabling us to offer regulatory activities that work towards your application for FCA Authorisation. We have been helping young businesses enter the financial services sector in the UK since 1998, and it is that depth of experience that informs all our client relationships. This experience is perhaps best exemplified in our regulatory umbrella services. Our main aim is to help start-ups and young businesses get to market as quickly and as professionally as possible.

Support that gives you room to breathe.

A key feature of our Regulatory Umbrella is the support

At an institutional level, we provide robust support through operations and technical strands. The process involved in applying for your FCA Authorisation and regulation is complex and time-consuming, and needs to be followed rigorously. We can help companies do this by taking the reins and guiding them towards compliance, leaving businesses to get on with what they do best: create revenue. We help with documentation, training and strategy development for your FCA Authorisation and approval. When the application goes through, you’ll know it has been developed and processed professionally.

Freeing up your valuable resources

We work with hedge funds, private wealth management companies and advisers, to name but a few. All of our clients want to trade in investments while they wait for full FCA Authorisation, and we create the conditions that allow them to do so. The key benefit here is that you gain the opportunity of redirecting resources into other aspects of your business. Rather than spending time and energy, as well as money, in training employees to work on compliance issues, a good umbrella framework removes the need to use your organisation’s precious resources. And it’s easier too. The compliance materials can be complex and even appear baffling. We will ensure that they are explained and managed with the minimum of jargon, so you get a plain speaking, common sense service. This removes huge barriers to progress, because again the resources you save can be deployed elsewhere.

Regulatory Umbrella – How long does it take?

Regulatory Umbrella –- How long does it take?

An Appointed Representative Firm Model: Following a New Enquiry Call

Onboarding including Onboarding Training

Following a new inquiry call, meeting notes are sent back to you, and you agree in principle to work with Sturgeon.  Next, you will receive a Contract for Services to sign.  This will of course be subject to the onboarding process not throwing up any skeletons in the closet that may affect any personnel not being Fit and Proper. 

Due diligence involves an overview of your business model so we can assess expertise, experience, people, and financial resources. The initial risk assessment looks at culture, company financials and the proposed regulated activities. Once through this assessment Sturgeon will commence structured due diligence on your firm, the directors, and its controlling shareholders. 

All persons, prior to being approved by the FCA, are appropriately trained before submission to ensure that they are aware of what is expected of them as controlled function persons. The training includes programmes on anti-money laundering, market abuse, anti-bribery and a hot topic, conflicts of interest, in addition to courses on new regulations and related topics. We will provide you with a compliance manual, relevant compliance policies to be reviewed and an attestation that they have been done before the FCA submission. 

Typically this takes most firms 3 weeks…..

Once the onboarding is complete, a submission will be made to the FCA to notify them that the firm is to be an Appointed Representative Firm of Sturgeon Ventures and their personnel will become Approved Persons with Controlled Functions whether a CF1 (AR) Director, a CF4 (AR) a Partner, and/or a CF30 (AR) Advisor. 

Since mid-September 2021, individuals are submitted at the same time as the Firm for the FCA’s assessment and approval. 

We must stress that once submissions have been made to the FCA, the timings and outcome are out of our control, but we will provide ongoing updates, so you know where you stand.

We aim to have you up and running as quickly as possible. Once the Firm has been given a Firm Reference Number (FRN) and the first individual has been approved by the FCA, business can commence further to Sturgeon reviewing the onboarding of a client.

Ongoing Monitoring

Overseeing and monitoring your business involves both a combination of formal meetings and regular informal contact; our aim is to get to know you and your people. Formal meetings will include a detailed discussion on the business, an assessment of the risks and the completion of several registers. Websites, marketing material and financial promotions will be checked and approved in a constructive and timely fashion. Sturgeon has been an agile team working from home offices for more than two decades, so our procedures are intuitive, timely and flexible. 

Compliance Software

Sturgeon has built a bespoke regulation technology procedure which provides appointed representative firms’ personnel and Sturgeon Ventures staff with an easy-to-use online process. The platform streamlines the compliance monitoring process and provides a complete audit trail.

Why is Sturgeon Ventures’ Regulatory Incubator different?

Unlike the newer entrants that have joined into the Regulatory Hosting in the last few years, until 2007 Sturgeon Ventures was the only provider of this service as we innovated it, taking the model from the UK Retail Sector. Sturgeon Ventures has incubated people and firms since its launch in 1998.

Sturgeon has no juniors on the team, all the people you will deal with have been in compliance and front office roles for over 5 years – many for 20+ years – and our management team each have in excess of 20 years in the Financial Services industry. Our Founder has been a Stockbroker, a Corporate Financier, a Venture Capitalist and a Portfolio Manager and is the Pioneer of The Regulatory Incubator, having coined the phrase in 2001, which is now more commonly known as  The Regulatory Umbrella.

Sturgeon Ventures is 100% privately owned and thrives on innovation. Unlike some of its peers, who are now owned by Private Equity Firms, Sturgeon is nimble and places value on personal relationships.

Some newer entrants have grabbed market share by driving down prices, however low prices do not always mean the best service, nor a partner to build a reputation and entrepreneurial journey with. Check out Sturgeon’s Stories.

Sturgeon thrives on providing world-class advice and solutions that create lasting authentic relationships.

Past and current clients are always happy to have a call with new firms.

For regulatory hosting that helps you develop your business plan more effectively, with full compliance and confidence, turn to us. We incubate financial services companies that want to hit the ground running. From helping to write your business plan, to recruiting staff members that will help you meet your business goals, our Regulatory Umbrella platform gives you the expertise and confidence to enter the UK market quickly and effectively.


If you’d like further help or want to become an Appointed Representative working with an FCA Regulated firm, please contact Sturgeon Ventures.

Sturgeon Ventures FCA Registration listing can be found here –Registered FCA Listing