New Alliance Launches to Help Regulators Deploy Tech and Build Smarter Financial Regulation

Backed by Fintech Entrepreneurs and VCs, Alliance for Innovative Regulation (AIR) Launches at Money20/20

Washington DC – Tuesday, October 29, 2019 – To help regulators embrace technology and integrate innovation into their organizational DNA, Jo Ann Barefoot, former Deputy Comptroller of the Currency, and David Ehrich, co-founder of fintech credit card startup Petal, announced today the launch of The Alliance for Innovative Regulation (AIR). The organization connects fintech leaders, financial institutions, regulatory agencies—and their innovation teams—to work together on modernizing the financial regulatory system. Thomas Curry, former Comptroller of the Currency and partner at Nutter, McClennen & Fish, will serve on the organization’s board of directors.

“Facebook’s Libra announcement is the latest recognition that fintech innovations are outpacing the tech-readiness of our system,” says Jo Ann Barefoot, AIR’s co- founder and CEO. “To keep up with the exponential change of technology, regulators have to radically decrease innovation cycle-time and adapt quickly to new technologies.”

“Regulation-Innovation cannot be an oxymoron,” says David Ehrich, AIR co-founder. “AIR’s mission is to help regulators understand new technologies and migrate from a mostly analog model to a system of digitally-native design.”

AIR is building on efforts in the UK—including tech sprints—to advance a more reliable, secure, and transparent financial system. AIR has already raised $2 million in funding from leading fintech entrepreneurs and venture capitalists, including a 3- year seed grant from Flourish, a venture of The Omidyar Group.

“We are excited to be part of this unprecedented alliance,” says Kabir Kumar, director at Flourish. “We all want to build a fair financial system and that requires informed regulators and strong institutions. The Alliance for Innovative Regulation is uniquely positioned to deliver on that vision.”

The funding collaborative for AIR is still expanding but is made up of key leaders from the fintech community, including founders, CEOs, and VCs, such as Chris Larsen, Ripple; Raul Vazquez, Oportun; Colin Walsh, Varo Money; Shamir Karkal, Sila; Josh Reich, Simple; and VC funders Arjan Schütte, Core Innovation Capital; Dan Kimerling, Deciens Capital; John Beccia, FS Vector; and Jeremiah Buckley, Buckley LLP.

For more information about AIR's launch and mission, read the full press release here.

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