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Why Thistle Initiatives

At Thistle Initiatives we provide expert compliance advice and support right across the financial services sector. Our clients range from niche start-ups to long-established market leaders, from investment specialists to lenders and payment services firms.

Our team is structured into specialist practices. So, you’ll always be talking to people who know your market and the specific regulatory challenges you face.

We operate in six areas of expertise:

We offer comprehensive advice and support on FCA and PRA regulation and on legislation that affects financial services firms – from GDPR to anti-money laundering.

We handle everything from helping start-ups seeking direct authorisation and firms transitioning from AR to DA status, to advising on capital adequacy, regulated accounting (including CASS), and Section 166 issues.

We provide training, locum compliance office services, audits, due diligence, and ongoing support and advice, by phone or face to face.

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History and philosophy

James Dingwall set Thistle Initiatives up in 2012 to offer financial services firms a comprehensive compliance resource with the expertise to manage both strategic and hands-on projects.

While working with two of the big four consultancy firms, James Dingwall recognised the challenges faced by financial services firms, and the mix of skills and expertise it takes to deliver effective solutions. His experience with blue-chip clients shaped James’ philosophy of combining high-level skills and experience with a personal, tailored approach. The Thistle Initiatives way focuses on interpreting regulations in the light of clients’ specific business models to deliver practical solutions that reflect their real needs.

This philosophy has proved its worth – both for our clients and for Thistle Initiatives. Today we’re one of the UK’s leading regulatory consultancies, with a team of 40+ talented people working from offices in London, Edinburgh and Dublin. Our clients include many well-known names, and we’re constantly expanding the range of services and support we provide.

Members of the Association of Professional Compliance Consultants (APCC)

Thistle Initiatives is one of the largest members of the Association of Professional Compliance Consultants (APCC). This is the body that represents compliance consultancies advising FCA regulated firms in the UK. The APCC promotes high professional standards and sets best practice guidance for members to follow.

The APCC is recognised as a trade body by the FCA and often works with the regulator to pilot or test new initiatives and provide feedback on a range of topics. This relationship gives members like Thistle Initiatives valuable direct access to the FCA, from which our clients also benefit.

To find out more, email or call 0207 436 0630.