FTI helps Malta Financial Services Authority with financial crime

14 December 2020 Consultancy.eu

FTI Consulting has in the past two years delivered a number of engagements at the Malta Financial Services Authority (MFSA), bagging over €3.4 million in fees for its services.

The first two contracts granted by the MFSA were in February and June 2019, when the regulator tapped FTI Consulting to help it boost its financial crime capabilities. Facing mounting financial crime risks, both within its own ranks but also in the wider sectors it regulates, MFSA faced the need to up its game.

Together with FTI, the institution created a specialised team – led by Federica Taccogna from FTI Consulting – tasked with strengthening its supervisory and compliance efforts. According to Joseph Cuschieri, the chief executive of MFSA at the time [he resigned last month under a cloud of scandal], the project was a perfect fit within the organisation’s anti-money laundering strategy published at the start of 2019.

FTI helps Malta Financial Services Authority with financial crime

“FTI Consulting were engaged to act as a temporary but critical transition device, providing not only immediate resources and expertise augmentation but also on-the-job coaching to create a stronger permanent Financial Crime Compliance (FCC) setup at the MFSA,” he said.

Asked why the authority turned to an external consultancy firm, Cuschieri said, “FTI Consulting’s strong financial crime expertise, analytic and forensic capabilities will enable us to achieve an unprecedented depth of scrutiny and allow us to take the industry to the next level of compliance and sophistication in the fight against crime.”

Fast forward more than twelve months, and the team has enabled the MFSA to increase the number of inspections it conducts, and enhance the quality of its audits. Meanwhile, crime busters within the organisation have seen their anti-money laundering and terrorism financing capabilities beefed up, meaning that they are better able to carry out their job.

In the summer of this year, FTI Consulting was flown in for a third engagement, worth €920,000, focused on delivering “regulatory expertise including training”.

With fees of €3.4 million, FTI Consulting is by far the largest beneficiary of MFSA’s external management consulting spend since the beginning of 2018. Other consulting firms that were mandate for consultancy support included Grant Thornton and Big Four firms EY and PwC.