On the eve of BREXIT UK’s Contis Group gets Lithuanian Electronic Money Institution license


The Board of the Bank of Lithuania decided to issue the Electronic Money Institution (EMI) license for UAB Finansinės paslaugos „Contis“– part of UK based Contis Group securing groups access to the financial markets of continental Europe. Decision of the Board of the Lithuanian Central Bank granting Contis EMI license was taken on 23 July, 2019 and has been followed by the news on Boris Johnson election as the new Conservative party leader and become new UK’s Prime Minister committing to withdraw the UK out of the EU with or without a deal on 31 October, 2019.

Contis is a leading provider of award-winning, end-to-end, banking, payments and processing solutions. Founded in 2008 by Peter Cox, Contis’ proprietary, scalable platform manages both bank and Visa payments in real time through a single account. One of the FT1000: Europe’s Fastest Growing Companies for two years in a row (2018, 2019). Contis has offices in the UK, Lithuania and India providing modular banking solutions to third parties, in addition to a number of branded and white-labelbanking products, offering full current account capability. Contis benefits from a full licence suite, including FCA and Bank of Lithuania e-money Licences covering the EEA, and is a Principal Visa member with sponsorship capability. License issued by the Bank of Lithuania to grants the right to provide wide range of payment processing services and payment card issuing in EEA.

Flavia Alzetta, CEO of Contis said: “This licence provides Contis with the flexibility it seeks to leverage its SEPA capabilities and deliver a compelling, comprehensive banking and payments offering across the continent of Europe irrespective of the outcome of Brexit.  We are delighted to extend our regional footprint through a regulator as rigorous and progressive as the Bank of Lithuania.”

Attorney at Law Kestutis Kvainauskas at ECOVIS ProventusLaw firm advising Contis during the licensing process in Lithuania tells that starting right time Contis got European EMI license in Lithuania exactly in time, because No-deal-BREXIT seems to be the reality within 3 months. Mr. Kvainauskas also disclosed that there is a number of other UK applicants in the licensing process with the Bank of Lithuania expecting to be licensed till 31 October, 2019. “The fact that applicant holds a license issued by UK’s Financial Conduct Authority or other EU regulator usually is considered as an advantage, however, it itself does not impact the licensing timeframe as the due diligence by the Bank of Lithuania is carried out independently”, – he added.

In 2018, the number of financial technology companies (FinTech) operating in Lithuania and the number of people working in them increased by more than 40 percent. In 2018 there were about 170 FinTech companies in Lithuania (while in 2017 there were 117).

ECOVIS ProventusLaw has helped over 25 companies from different parts of the world to obtain payment and electronic money institution licenses advising such international organizations as InstaReM. Because of BREXIT lately ECOVIS ProventusLaw identifies the rising interest form British financial institutions.

ECOVIS ProventusLaw is a part of ECOVIS International, operating in over 70 countries around the world.

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