Aside from the political headache caused by Brexit, major financial services companies operating across the UK and EU will need to review and update a whopping 7.5+ million contracts in the next 12 months – including trading documents, key supplier agreements, loans and non-trading contracts – according to new analysis from global alternative legal services provider Axiom, which today (15 March) launches BrexitBridge.
Reminiscent of Axiom’s tech-led derivatives offering to help banks with changes to margin variation rules, BrexitBridge combines artificial intelligence (AI), business intelligence tools and legal expertise to expedite the review, revision and renegotiation of contracts on a large scale. Axiom handles over a million contracts per year and BrexitBridge leverages this experience and is purpose-built for the financial services industry. According to Axiom BrexitBridge incorporates insights from its margin variation work, where Axiom is working with leading financial services companies – including the top 12 global banks – on major, large scale contracting changes ahead of regulations like Margin Reform for Uncleared Derivatives, GDPR and MiFID II.
BrexitBridge comprises three standardised modules that clients can use either on a standalone basis to address specific phases of a Brexit project, or in combination as an end-to-end contracting solution. The first module leverages AI and tailored data aggregation tools to organise existing contracts and customer data into remediation-ready information packages, eliminating weeks of effort and saving millions of pounds.
Next, financial institutions can utilise BrexitBridge’s interpretation module to unlock insight into the risks, obstacles, opportunities and trends within a contract portfolio. In this module, Axiom’s proprietary technology and process convert unstructured contract text into structured data, which clients can access through a dynamic business intelligence dashboard.
Finally, once clients are ready to begin amending contracts, they can leverage BrexitBridge’s remediation module, an end-to-end outreach, drafting and negotiation platform. In addition to automating functions like document generation and large-scale counterparty outreach, it enables stakeholders to track workflows, see the status of contracts in the renegotiation process and access key management insights. As a result, financial institutions can better assess progress, identify any risks and revise their strategy in real-time as remediation efforts proceed. This platform can be delivered as a standalone solution or alongside partner offerings.
Brexit is a step change more complex than any other mass contract update the financial services industry has faced to date. More than 100 types of contracts will be impacted, and companies will need to consider dozens of European regulations (each with dozens or even hundreds of specific requirements) and local laws when making their changes. Banks, asset managers and insurers will need to make their contracts ready not just for business after Brexit, but also make sure they comply with MiFID II, AIFMD, the Solvency II Directive and more.
“With just over a year to go until Brexit, companies need to get their contracts ready now. In practice, this means repapering massive volumes of contracts of all types to ensure continuity in the event of a hard Brexit,” said Chris DeConti, executive vice president of global solutions at Axiom. “Brexit requirements cut across such a wide range of contracts and cover so many lines of business that legacy models for handling this work are untenable. The scale of the Brexit challenge cries out for a different kind of solution, which is exactly what we aimed for in designing BrexitBridge.”