Many of you will have seen that the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) is one of the regulators that is way out in front when it comes to Fintech. In a speech given in Adelaide on Friday, John Price, ASIC Commissioner, provided the slightly surprising statistic that entrepreneurs who engage the innovation hub before submitting a licence application are approved on average in 110 days, compared to 205 days when special assistance is not sought.
Mr Price also confirmed that ASIC is close to finalising its final "regulatory sandbox" policy and has signed fintech cooperation agreements with the Kenya Capital Markets Authority and the Ontario Securities Commission, in addition to its memoranda of understanding with the UK's FCA and Singapore's MAS.
One of the areas which Mr Price considers in his speech in more detail is Regtech (he also covers digital advice and marketplace lending). ASIC has a page dedicated to Regtech where they note that they are seeing Regtech businesses looking at the following areas:
- identity verification;
- fraud prevention through transaction analysis;
- trade tracking and analysis;
- anti-money laundering;
- monitoring culture through people analytics;
- automation of previously manual processes;
- collection of standardised compliance data in real time;
- analysis of large data sets for compliance risk and monitoring; and
- automatic generation of reports.
For those of you who feel the lure of a friendly Fintech regulator, and want to make your views heard, ASIC will be hosting a regtech roundtable in February 2017. You can register your interest by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org .
I would also like to note that, in the greater majority of cases where a fintech entity has been licensed by ASIC, we have utilised, in their favour, our discretion to help get the licence across the line – particularly as regards the skills and experience requirements that normally apply.