Clearbell Reduces Investor Onboarding Time by 90% with Vespia’s AML Compliance Solution

With Sophie Burrows, Investor Relations & Communications Manager at Clearbell
90%
onboarding time reduced
93.4%
onboarded on the first try
< 5 days
onboarding time per investor

Case study: Clearbell

Clearbell is a UK privately-owned real estate fund management and advisory business whose mission is to invest in and advise on various scopes of real estate projects across the UK. Covering everything from active asset management to developing properties across all real estate sectors.

Clearbell receives investments from insurance companies and pension funds from different parts of the globe. This means that as an AML-obligated entity Clearbell is required to perform KYB and KYC checks on the investors that they onboard.

This was a perfect opportunity for collaboration between Clearbell and Vespia.

The challenge

Clearbell came to us with a challenge to provide them with a modern user-friendly onboarding experience. However, since they are operating in a more traditional environment with investors being used to filling in paperwork by hand, the flow had to be intuitive, trustworthy, and most importantly, fully AML compliant.

Clearbell’s AML Compliance team must evaluate every investor with a risk-based approach in-house. Before Vespia, the team performed time-consuming KYB and KYC checks manually.

The process consisted of sending AML questionnaires for the investor to fill in, print out, sign, scan in and send back to Clearbell. AML questionnaire type depends on the type of company that is being onboarded.

Together with the AML questionnaire the investor had to provide other documents, such as ID document scans, articles of incorporation, certificates of good standing, UBO and shareholder documents, and more.

Oftentimes the onboarding process got stuck on the investor’s side due to not having time to fill in the AML form or upload the documentation. There was also no clear overview of the status of the verification due to all the communication happening via email.

All in all, the back-and-forth emailing, document research, filling in the AML questionnaires, waiting, Sanctions and PEP screenings, and business register checks - it took Clearbell up to 2 months on average to onboard just one investor.

Sophie Burrows
Investor Relations & Communications Manager
"
I do a lot of work related to compliance by gathering all the information for Clearbell's CFO and Head of Compliance, and I can say first-hand that getting all the information in one place about the investors is a big struggle. It's been quite painful. There's a lot of information together. It's tricky for them, and it's tricky for me. It's just always been a bit of a battle.

The solution

After exploring some available providers on the market, Clearbell found the solution they were looking for in Vespia.

Clearbell opted for the Vespia Onboarding Flow which includes the following features:

Vespia offers Clearbell a fast and secure investor onboarding while delivering powerful anti-fraud protection and ensuring full compliance with all required AML regulations of the EU and UK.

One of the essential features Vespia offers Clearbell is the capability to regulate verification levels on a case-by-case basis and create distinct verification flows for different types of funds and investors.

Why Vespia?

Customized verification flows are paramount for the business, and Vespia's flexible AML compliance solution lets the team manage different investors according to their needs. 

Vespia's solution offered the client regular support and data storage to provide a thorough audit trail to appease regulators. 

The implementation

The implementation took 2 months (1 week of implementation, and 5 weeks to hit the roadmap milestones for features). 

Thanks to the Clearbell use case, Vespia launched AML questionnaire 2.0, which now allows our customers to not only change the AML questions but also create several versions of the questionnaire for different company types.

Every next company that will come to Vespia wanting the AML questionnaire 2.0 will take only 1 week to implement. 

Sophie Burrows
Investor Relations & Communications Manager
"
The team at Vespia has been great. Everyone's been helpful and listened to what it is that we need. And they've found a solution to suit us. And at an affordable cost, which is helpful.

The result

The back-and-forth emails were replaced by the Vespia Onboarding Flow, which is designed to help Clearbell get a more in-depth verification process, as it involves the company itself in the verification process from the very beginning. 

  • Onboarding time per one investor was cut by 90%
  • It now takes Clearbell less than 5 days to onboard one investor
  • 93.4% of investors can pass the Vespia Onboarding Flow on the first try

The onboarding time per investor got reduced from 2 months down to 5 days. The intuitive Vespia Onboarding Flow allows investors to include all of their company details and AML answers without spending days and weeks collecting the information, downloading, scanning, and filling in forms.

Sophie Burrows
Investor Relations & Communications Manager
"
The Vespia Onboarding Flow is bringing KYB and KYC into the modern world. On the one hand, Clearbell makes sure that its compliance team fills in the data gap in a user-friendly way to simplify the process of staying AML compliant and please the regulators. On the other hand, it is an easier process to be followed the investors as well. It's a win-win!

Clearbell is now able to concentrate on its core job and leave the AML verification and onboarding to Vespia. 

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