There are 39 Local Operating Units (also known as Registration Agents) currently operating under the GLEIF’s accreditation. These units can operate independently or they can issue LEIs through a network of partners. But how do you know who is the right supplier for you?
Only GLEIF accredited organisations can become a Local Operating Unit. Once designated, LOUs can offer registration, renewal and other services, acting as the primary interface for legal entities wishing to obtain an LEI.
Becoming an LOU means committing to standards of data quality and customer service. A legal entity does not necessarily have to purchase an LEI from a Local Operating Unit in their own jurisdiction. As long as the GLEIF have authorised the LOU to operate in that jurisdiction, then you can apply for, and receive an LEI for your entity.
The GLIEF says:
“The LEI issuing organization must verify the reference data with the local Registration Authority – a national Business Register, for example – and issue an LEI compliant with the LEI standard.
The fees charged for the issuance and maintenance of an LEI are entirely a matter for the LEI issuing organizations and must be cost-based. The Global LEI System is designed to encourage competition between LEI issuing organizations.”
The important thing to note here is that the LEI issued to you will be the same, no matter where you received that LEI. There are subtle differences in organisation prices, practices and expanding services which may alter your choices and make long term LEI management easier.
If you run a business where you have the potential of buying and managing multiple LEIs for your client (for example, Asset or Investment Managers, Banks etc), it pays to choose the right LEI issuer. Lapsed LEIs can cause issues and delays in future trading or even cost you in regulatory compliance. Leaving the administration of LEIs to an employee is risky because employees can quit, become forgetful, get promotions and in doing any of these things, the management of LEIs can slip by the wayside.
There are LEI issuers out there that can provide helpful management tools from complete portfolio management to back-end management systems where you can safely and securely give access to employees and receive notifications when LEIs are about to lapse.
It also helps to have predictive technology to find legal entity details to streamline the application process and a built in API to help you embed the LEI application process into your own business service seamlessly.
The LEI application process can be slow and painstaking, whether you are doing it for your business or a client. First, you need to fill in your Level 1 and Level 2 data and then that data has to be verified by the Local Operating Unit or Registration Agent and once verified, your LEI issued. The verification process involves certain checks and signatures, which, for many LOUs, causes delays of hours and even days.
When looking at LEI issuers, make sure to ask how long approximate registration time is as well as how long it will be before information is verified and the LEI is delivered. Registration should be easy and fast and you should be able to receive your LEI in minutes to at most, a day. A good LEI issuer will also offer quick and easy processes for you to transfer your LEI to another supplier if you should wish to do so.
An often-missed thought when it comes to choosing an LEI issuer is the additional services that the LOU offer. Most of the time, if you want to buy an LEI, you just want one cheap and quick! But thinking about the company you buy from can bring additional benefits to your business in the long run.
There are a few examples of services that can be useful. One of these is digital signature services. There are already regulations out there that require LEI with iXBRL reporting so it makes sense to have easy access to a trusted organisation that can issue LEIs within digital certificates.
Another are of interest to think about is onboarding and KYC. If a customer spends time applying for and receiving an LEI, only to have to repeat the validation process to register for a financial service, valuable customer experience is lost. LEI issuers that have developed Validation Agent roles can simplify the onboarding process and enhance KYC and due diligence checks to reduce fraud and improve the customer experience within the financial sector.
It helps to discuss your business needs and talk to a potential LEI issuer about your needs to see if there are any suggestions to enhance your processes and services with the Legal Entity Identifier.
No doubt, price is a huge factor when buying an LEI for yourself or for a client. The GLEIF has purposefully created a system that can have competition because they wanted to ensure that LEIs cannot be overpriced.
Companies like the London Stock Exchange and Bloomberg issue LEIs at £65-90 +VAT. But if you look a little harder, you will find issuers that can offer as low as £32 a year!
Of course, you never want to buy from a company that you can’t trust. Many organisations would rather spend extra if they can purchase from an organisation that they know and that might be why LSE and Bloomberg can charge such high rates. But with a little digging there is no reason one of the smaller LEI issuers cannot be trusted.
If you have any doubts about a potential provider, pick up the phone or live chat with someone to ask them more about the business and what would happen to your LEI if the business collapses.
ManagedLEI is a RapidLEI partner. Our LEIs are issued using the RapidLEI system, the fastest growing and the number one LEI issuer by volume. RapidLEI are also the number one issuer for data quality and that is probably because they have the most robust LEI application technology which includes automated prefill and a back-end management system that can be used for bulk LEI ordering or LEI management.
RapidLEI is part of Ubisecure Oy, a world leading Identity and Access Management company in Europe. Ubisecure have a keen understanding of the role that LEIs play in the wider ecosystem and have developed their technology and strategy to secure and enhance digital business worldwide. One example of this is the ‘Sign in with RapidLEI’ service which uses your organization’s global Legal Identifier to provide a fast, secure, and privacy-friendly way for employees and representatives to authenticate themselves and their rights to represent your organization.
LEIs from ManagedLEI can be purchased for as low as £32 a year with multi-year discounts applied and an LEI can be issued in minutes after ordering. The registration process itself only takes 99 seconds!
To learn more about applying for an LEI with ManagedLEI, visit our website now
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