Luxembourg fund managers to benefit from licensing relief from ASIC

ASIC has extended to certain Luxembourg fund managers the relief from the requirement to hold an Australian financial services licence, currently provided to other foreign financial services provider (in particular from the UK, US, Singapore, Hong Kong and Germany). 

The relief applies to body corporates incorporated in Luxembourg as either an investment company or a management company with a current licence or authorisation granted by the Commission de Surveillance du Secteur Financier (CSSF), authorising them to provide financial services (to wholesale/institutional clients) and is on similar terms to the relief that is currently granted to other foreign providers. As with the relief for other jurisdictions, a Luxembourg fund manager would need to meet certain conditions and provide certain documents to ASIC before it can rely on the relief.

The instrument, ASIC Corporations (CSSF-Regulated Financial Services Providers) Instrument 2016/1109, was made on 8 November 2016 and applies until 28 September 2018, in line with ASIC's previously announced review of relief provided to foreign financial service providers. ASIC has indicated it proposes to carry out the review over the next 12 months and consult on ASIC's proposals to remake the relief for foreign financial service providers in early 2018.

Our previous Insight on ASIC's review of this relief can be found here. Holders of existing exemptions should consider making submissions to ASIC once the consultation period has opened as this may assist in securing those exemptions into the future. A link to ASIC's Consultation Paper which sets out further detail on its proposed review can be found here.

ASIC has stated that its aim in reassessing the current relief will be to strike an appropriate balance between:

  • facilitating the cross-border provision of financial services on the basis of substituted compliance; and

  • ensuring ASIC can adequately supervise these foreign entities in our markets.

Please contact HDY if you have any queries, or would like assistance in understanding the relief.

We are grateful for the assistance of Cate Shirley in preparing this Insight.

Nikki Bentley

I understand the financial services industry and thrive on helping our clients in this industry succeed.

Nikki Bentley Partner

Nikki is the Group Leader of Henry Davis York's Corporate Group, which includes the legal teams for Corporate / Mergers & Acquisitions; Investments & Financial Services and Tax.

Nikki is a leading investment funds advisor specialising in financial services and corporate law.  She specialises in business establishment and structuring, fund establishment, funds merger and acquisition, product disclosure and distribution. Nikki leads HDY's corporate group which combines expertise from the Financial Services, M&A and Tax areas.

Nikki provides advice to leading Australian and global fund managers on a full range of corporate, commercial and regulatory issues facing their businesses. She has considerable experience in assisting clients with fund establishment (onshore and offshore), disclosure and distribution. Nikki regularly advises clients on establishing, buying, selling and restructuring their businesses. She also regularly assists clients responding to regulatory enquiries and investigations.

With more than 15 years funds management experience in private practice, government and as an in-house lawyer, Nikki's practice spans the range of funds management products, with particular expertise in hedge funds, property funds and equities.

Nikki is regularly involved in industry and government discussions on regulatory reforms impacting the Australian funds management industry. Nikki is a passionate advocate for the development of a new corporate collective investment vehicle because of the opportunities it could provide to grow the funds management industry. She is the Honorary Legal Counsel and Chair of the Regulatory Committee for the Australian branch of the Alternative Investment Management Association (AIMA) and is a regular participant on the Financial Services Council (FSC) working groups.

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Jon Ireland

I constantly strive for technical excellence and commercial outcomes that add real value for my clients.

Jon Ireland Partner

Jon has extensive experience in corporate and financial services law, specialising in complex transactions, funds management and investment distribution. Jon also advises on regulatory issues relating to the use of technology in financial services.

Jon provides advice to leading Australian and international financial services clients on the full range of corporate, commercial and regulatory issues facing these businesses. He has considerable experience advising them on establishing, buying into, selling and restructuring their businesses.

Jon regularly advises on funds management issues including fund structuring, disclosure, investment management and outsourcing arrangements. He has particular expertise in the area of investment distribution and has advised on key projects for platform operators and advice providers.

Recently, Jon has advised on the establishment of a fully digital investment platform, the negotiation of a material outsourcing arrangement for a global investment bank and a scheme modernisation project for a leading Australian fund manager. Jon has also recently advised on the establishment of the Australian operations of a global diversified financial services business, including regulatory and corporate issues related to its expansion.

Jon's clients value his advice on recent law reforms, including around product disclosure statements and the digital provision of financial services. Jon is consulting to the Committee for Sydney and is a regular participant on Financial Services Council working groups.

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Matthew Farnsworth

It's rewarding to partner with clients to find solutions that add value and help them succeed.

Matthew Farnsworth Special Counsel

Matthew has extensive experience in funds management and financial services law. He advises leading Australian and international financial services clients across a wide range of transactional and regulatory matters.

Matthew advises leading Australian and international financial services clients on transactional and regulatory matters.

Clients look to Matthew to assist them to establish, offer and operate retail and wholesale investment funds. He advises on Australian financial services licensing, fund governance, offer documents and fund restructures, including managed investment schemes and other collective investment vehicles (CIVs).

He also advises on outsourcing arrangements, compliance issues and on ongoing regulatory developments in the financial services sector.

Matthew is experienced in the full range of asset classes and has particular experience in the property funds sector, including fund establishment, capital raising and restructures.

He is also experienced in a wide range of transactions in the financial services sector, joint ventures and funds M&A.

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