Fintech firms’ incubation programme will protect investors – SEC

Fintech firms’ incubation programme will protect investors – SEC

The Securities and Exchange Commission has said that the safety of investors and their investments in the capital market is one of its reasons for initiating the regulatory incubation programme for fintechs.

This was stated by the Director, Registration, Exchanges, Market Infrastructure and Innovation, Abdulkadir Abbas, in a statement issued by SEC on Sunday.

Abbas stated that the regulatory incubation programme was designed as an interim measure to facilitate regulation of fintechs’ activities to conform to capital market rules.

“The principal plan is to provide an avenue for new solutions without compromising on investor protection which is our key objective,” he said.

According to Abbas, it was an interim measure to ensure that the fintech ideas that conformed with investment activities as defined in Investment and Securities Act 2007 could be assessed before being onboarded into the regulatory incubation programme.

The SEC director said the commission through the RI, was providing an avenue where fintechs could test their ideas without affecting the market integrity, adding that one of the other objectives was to be able to create an opportunity to solve an existing problem in the market.

The SEC opened the application portal for its regulatory incubation programme for fintech firms operating or seeking to operate in the Nigerian capital market in April.

Abbas disclosed that before the launch of the RI, the SEC had been engaging with various fintech applicants, some of whom were existing capital market operators.

He said, “Some are existing market operators; some are new interests in the market. And from the time when we announced the takeoff till today, what has been happening is that a lot of applicants are accessing what we call the initial assessment form; that is the first stage of onboarding you into the RI.

“We have had a couple of engagements and what interest us is the traction of new fintech companies providing a solution to an existing problem in the market. But what we are trying to do now very quickly is to encourage more of these fintechs to come now that we have opened this phase.

“We believe that it will deepen the market and it will facilitate bringing new products into the market and new ideas will come on board to solve existing problems in the market.”

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