The Advice Unit focuses on developing automated advice models which would service the advice gaps in the market identified by the Financial Advice Market Review (FAMR). The FCA has updated the “How to Apply” section, which now states that although the initial application period closed on 1 July 2016, firms can still have an initial discussion with the FCA about their models.
The Innovation Hub webpage sets out the support which the FCA Innovation Hub can provide to firms, including a dedicated team and contact for innovator firms, helping them understand the regulatory framework, assisting businesses in preparing and making an application for authorisation and providing a dedicated contact once an innovator business is authorised.
The FCA has also updated its Project Innovate webpages including the addition of information on its engagement with authorities around the globe, such as the Monetary Authority of Singapore and the Australian Securities and Investment Commission. Co-operation agreements agreed with the overseas regulators include a referral mechanism for innovative business seeking to enter the other’s market. Once referred by the home regulator, and ahead of applying for authorisation to operate in the new market, the business will have access to a dedicated team or contact person who will help them to understand the regulatory framework in the market they wish to join and how it applies to them.