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A Progress Report on the ANNA and GLEIF Mapping Initiative: First Pilot ISIN-to-LEI Relationship File Published

Connection between standards enables firms to aggregate data showing securities exposure in relation to individual issuers and related entities


Author: Stephan Wolf

  • Date: 2019-04-04
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  • Estimated Reading Time: 6 minutes

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On 4 April 2019, the Global Legal Entity Identifier Foundation (GLEIF) and the Association of National Numbering Agencies (ANNA) piloted the first daily open-source relationship file that links newly issued International Securities Identification Numbers (ISINs) and Legal Entity Identifiers (LEIs). The daily ISIN-to-LEI relationship files, which are now publicly available on the GLEIF website, currently include new ISINs issued by 11 early mover national numbering agencies (NNAs). Information on the participating NNAs is published on the ANNA website. It is expected that other NNAs will join the program going forward. Altogether, there are 116 NNAs responsible for issuing ISINs.

This cooperation between GLEIF and ANNA was announced in September 2018. It was created to improve the transparency of exposure by linking the issuer and issuance of securities. This enables firms to aggregate data which clearly shows their securities exposure in relation to an individual issuer and its related entities.

The ISIN-to-LEI relationship files are built upon a mapping process established by ANNA that is in the process of being certified by GLEIF. GLEIF’s Certification of Mapping service is a free of charge certification process which ensures that organizations that map the LEI to their own identifiers use state of the art methodologies and / or processes to do so accurately. Each NNA that opts into the ISIN-to-LEI mapping initiative is permitted to - and should - use the certificate that will be issued to ANNA.

LEI mapping – the perfect business language: Watch this video to learn how GLEIF enables quality assured and open source mapping solutions

The ISIN is the recognized global standard for unique identification of financial instruments, e.g. securities. According to Wikipedia: “A security is a tradable financial asset. The term commonly refers to any form of financial instrument, but its legal definition varies by jurisdiction. In some jurisdictions the term specifically excludes financial instruments other than equities and fixed income instruments. In other jurisdictions, it includes some instruments that are close to equities and fixed income, e.g., equity warrants. In some countries and languages, the term ‘security’ is commonly used in day-to-day parlance to mean any form of financial instrument, even though the underlying legal and regulatory regime may not have such a broad definition.” The LEI connects to key reference information that enables clear and unique identification of legal entities participating in financial transactions, e.g. the issuers of securities.

As stated in a related ANNA press release published in September 2018, in its role as the registration authority for the ISIN, “ANNA has been responsible for evolving and promoting the ISIN standard through its work and collaboration with members, regulators and the industry at large. As a result, today ISINs are issued in more than 200 jurisdictions worldwide, enabling global cross-border trading and improved transparency.” The ISIN-to-LEI mapping initiative “underlines ANNA’s commitment and mission to promoting the use of standards, including the two ISO standards used in this initiative: ISIN (ISO 6166) and LEI (ISO 17442).”

In the longer term there are plans to enhance the ISIN-to-LEI mapping initiative to also cover legacy ISINs.

Interoperability across parallel ID platforms streamlines entity verification processes and reduces data management costs

Data vendors and other organizations can benefit significantly from mapping their applicable identifiers to the LEI, as this provides enhanced functionality to their customers: interoperability across parallel ID platforms streamlines entity verification processes and reduces data management costs for data users. Certification, and the subsequent publication by GLEIF of publicly available, open source relationship files which match identifiers against corresponding LEIs, eases the process of gathering, aggregating and reconciling counterparty information. In this way, GLEIF creates a perfect language for business. One that will help everyone to trust who they work with, whatever identifier they use.

The LEI connects to key reference information describing a legal entity including its ownership structure. With it, businesses benefit from the world’s strictest regime of regular data verification. By mapping an alternate identifier to the LEI, a business automatically has access to the open and high quality LEI reference data available free of charge with the Global LEI Index. This protects its investment in existing software and processes while providing added value based on the reliable and trusted LEI data.

In February 2018, GLEIF and SWIFT introduced the first open source relationship file that matches a Business Identifier Code (BIC) assigned to an organization against its LEI. With the launch of this open source file, GLEIF and SWIFT pioneered a cooperation model that, for the first time, enabled market participants to link and cross-reference these key entity identifiers free of charge.

We know that every business working with entity identification faces the same challenges. The good news is that every business can benefit from the same solution. And that solution is GLEIF’s open source, free and reliable mapping tables.

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About the author:

Stephan Wolf is the CEO of the Global Legal Entity Identifier Foundation (GLEIF). Since January 2017, Mr. Wolf is Co-convener of the International Organization for Standardization Technical Committee 68 FinTech Technical Advisory Group (ISO TC 68 FinTech TAG). In January 2017, Mr. Wolf was named one of the Top 100 Leaders in Identity by One World Identity. He has extensive experience in establishing data operations and global implementation strategy. He has led the advancement of key business and product development strategies throughout his career. Mr. Wolf co-founded IS Innovative Software GmbH in 1989 and served first as its managing director. He was later named spokesman of the executive board of its successor IS.Teledata AG. This company ultimately became part of Interactive Data Corporation where Mr. Wolf held the role of CTO.


Tags for this article:
Client Relationship Management, Data Management, Global LEI Index, Global Legal Entity Identifier Foundation (GLEIF), Know-Your-Customer (KYC), LEI Business Case, LEI Mapping, Open Data, Over-the-Counter (OTC) Derivatives, Risk Management