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Allen & Overy welcomes Enigio into its digital assets and Legal Tech Fuse cohort to encourage industry collaboration on digitalisation of trade finance

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Allen & Overy’s tech innovation hub has welcomed Enigio into its current cohort.  Allen & Overy and Enigio expect the Electronic Trade Documents Act to be a further catalyst to digitalisation of trade finance given the importance of English law in global trade and trade finance.

The new law means that, under English law, electronic trade documents will be capable of having the same legal recognition and functionality as their paper equivalents, unlocking a key legal barrier to digitalisation of trade finance.

In anticipation of these legal changes, earlier this year, Allen & Overy announced Enigio as one of fifteen technology companies to join Fuse’s seventh cohort. The LegalTech companies included in Cohort 7 were selected for their potential to drive digital transformation across A&O and our clients’ businesses and will give A&O’s lawyers and clients the opportunity to learn from and collaborate with leading innovators across sectors.

Enigio is a tech company offering solutions to ensure consistency, integrity, traceability, and possession of digital information making data available only to those who should have access to it while protecting it from manipulation. Enigio helps companies to create freely transferable digital documents and assets. Enigio’s trace:original is a generic solution that can be used to securely transfer both value and data between any entity and/or organisation without the need for onboarding.

“We are delighted to partner with Allen & Overy at a perfect time for companies and banks to reap the benefits of using digital documents and negotiable instruments which are legally recognised under UK law; making it simpler, faster, safer and more sustainable for all businesses to trade globally,” says Patrik Zekkar, CEO at Enigio. “This is a major opportunity to extend liquidity to corporates in a harmonised and legal way using electronic negotiable instruments. With the new law in force, Enigio’s trace:original is a game-changer that enables all companies to fully digitalise their end-to-end transactions.”

Catherine Lang-Anderson, partner in Allen & Overy’s trade and commodity finance practice commented, “The much anticipated Electronic Trade Documents Act 2023 has recently received its Royal Assent, so welcoming Enigio into our Fuse cohort is perfect timing.  We expect this landmark change in law to be a further catalyst to digitalisation of trade finance but there is still much to be done and we are only at the beginning of this exciting journey.  As an industry, we need to collaborate closely to ensure that new products and techniques develop in a way that is consistent with the legal changes.  At Allen & Overy we are committed to being at the forefront of innovation in trade finance and a priority for us is to help our clients take full advantage of the new digital landscape as it further develops.”     

Part of our role in Fuse is to engage with clients to understand how they would like us to evolve the way in which deals are done. Trade finance is an area which we have understood is being transformed and we are thrilled to be working with Catherine and the Enigio team to help us and our clients navigate the opportunities ahead.

Shruti Ajitsaria, Allen & Overy partner and head of Fuse

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