Facilitating Innovative Fintech Businesses – a Regulator’s Perspective

29
Apr 15

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The upcoming opening of Stone and Chalk in Sydney is an example of the increasing recognition of the value of an innovative, vibrant fintech sector by Government and businesses.

Michael Saadat

Innovation in financial services was also an important theme of the recent Financial System Inquiry (FSI) which recommended changes by Government and regulators that could facilitate innovation, including:

  • the establishment of a permanent public–private sector collaborative committee, known as the ‘Innovation Collaboration’, to facilitate financial system innovation and enable timely and coordinated policy and regulatory responses;
  • making current and future regulation more technology neutral; and
  • removing regulatory impediments to innovative product disclosure and communication with consumers.

The Government is currently considering its response to the FSI’s recommendations.

ASIC and innovation in financial services

The Australian Securities & Investments Commission (ASIC) is committed to encouraging and facilitating innovation in financial services and markets where consumer outcomes are not jeopardised. ASIC has recently announced that it will be launching an innovation hub in the upcoming financial year to help start-ups and fintech businesses navigate ASIC’s regulatory system quickly and easily.

ASIC is considering:

  • ways to streamline common application processes, including applying for or varying an Australian financial services licence;
  • giving innovative businesses a dedicated contact in ASIC and more opportunities to talk about issues with ASIC decision makers; and
  • developing a one-stop shop on our website for businesses to access information and services directly targeted at them.

Next year, ASIC will also be introducing a live web chat facility for our registry business. Starting with simple registration inquiries, it will allow businesses to resolve issues in real time by engaging directly with an ASIC employee.

ASIC has also consulted on proposals to facilitate the electronic provision of disclosure documents. Making the laws around the provision of information more technology neutral may allow for faster, cheaper disclosures that are more convenient for both businesses and consumers.

ASIC regularly engages with industry stakeholders to discuss innovative products and emerging issues. We look forward to continuing to work with fintech businesses as innovation continues to transform the financial services sector.

Michael Saadat will be participating in the panel discussion “How Government & regulatory bodies can provide support to enable expansion of the Fintech sector” at the upcoming Collaboration in Fintech Conference. Book your ticket before May 8th and receive a $100 discount!

Fintech Conference

Submitted by Michael Saadat

Michael Saadat

Michael Saadat is Senior Executive Leader at the Australian Securities & Investments Commission (ASIC).

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