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The Fintech Finance 40: Mark Beeston
Partner, Illuminate Financial Management
Currently ranked: 34
Previously ranked: PNR
The constant drumbeat of regulatory developments since the 2008 financial crisis has kept Illuminate Financial Management hunting for regtech deals.
The fintech investment firm’s guiding principle is “generational change in financial markets,” says Mark Beeston, a partner who co-founded London-based Illuminate with Mark Whitcroft in 2014. “We are as active as anyone in the capital markets.”
In September, Illuminate provided financing to regulatory reporting company RegTek and marketplace lending data and analytics firm dv01, increasing the number of companies in its portfolio to eight. Beeston says the $5 million series A round for RegTek Solutions, which included a co-investment from Deutsche Börse’s DB1 Ventures, shows Illuminate’s focus on regtech as financial firms grapple with such compliance and reporting burdens as the second phase of Europe’s Markets in Financial Instruments Directive, known as MiFID II. The new rules, which took effect this month, will require brokerage firms to unbundle their research and trading fees.
In October, Illuminate and Commerzbank unit Main Incubator made an early-stage €1 million ($1.16 million) investment in TransFICC, which provides fixed-income markets connectivity to electronic trading venues, to help the company ramp up for new business expected to arise from MiFID II requirements.
Before co-founding Illuminate, Beeston was the head of ICAP’s post-trade risk and information business, now the NEX Optimisation unit of NEX Group. Earlier in his career, he was the intrapreneur behind Creditex’s T-Zero credit derivatives workflow business, now part of Intercontinental Exchange. And like Whitcroft, he had also worked at Deutsche Bank.
Other companies in Illuminate’s portfolio are ChartIQ, a data visualization services firm for capital markets; CloudMargin, a provider of collateral management services; and Privitar, which provides data privacy services.