France’s financial regulatory agency, the Autorité des Marchés Financiers (AMF), today announced the launch of its Fintech, Innovation and Competitiveness (FIC) division, set to launch June 1st 2016, according to an official AMF statement.
As part of the new launch, AMF has appointed Franck Guiader to head the new FIC division which will fall under the Regulatory Policy and International Affairs Directorate (DRAI) – he was previously appointed as Head of the Asset Management Division in February this year.
The AMF released its annual report earlier this month and highlighted plans regarding a joint effort with the country’s other financial market regulator the Autorité de Contrôle Prudentiel et de Résolution (ACPR) aimed to regulate fintech firms.
The news follows as the AMF also warned against four unlicensed forex operators in France earlier today, as reported by Finance Magnates.
FIC division for fintech
The new FIC effort by AMF is aimed to identify challenges within regulation and competitiveness due to innovations taking place within the investment services industry from fintech companies.
Many regulators have taken similar steps as they aim to catch up to the often quick rate of change in how financial products work, including how they are creatively packaged, as new and mature fintech companies continue to come out with new ways to approach traditional products.
Franck Guiader to head FIC
AMF added that the launch was being made amid a change of how financial products are consumed, and in order to make Paris more competitive as a financial hub as financial services become more globalized.
Earlier this year, Mr. Guiader had been appointed as Head of the Asset Management Division within the DRAI department – that the new FIC division is now being created within – after he replaced Natasha Cazenave so she could take on the role of Deputy Head of the DRAI on February 2nd 2016.
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Before joining the AMF originally in 2011, Mr. Guiader worked at Euronext for four years within a strategy and marketing capacity responsible for KYC approaches and EU listings, among other areas for the exchange.
Prior to NYSE Euronext, he worked for BNP Paribas developing investment and management mandate products for 70 institutional clients, according to a LinkedIn profile description.
He first started his career at Lazard as a financial analyst, and currently holds a Magistère degree in Banking and Finance, and also obtained a Master’s degree in Financial Techniques from the Université Panthéon Assas, as per the AMF update.
Furthermore, Mr. Guader graduated from Neoma Business School, and continues to lecture on European regulation at the Institut de Haute Finance as well as at the Université Panthéon Sorbonne, as per an AMF description and data on LinkedIn.
There have been regulatory sandboxes that have been launched in countries such as Australia to help support companies so they can make sure their products comply with relevant rules.
Because rules can vary across jurisdictions, even if the underlying technology has a common theme, it can thus require fintech firms to make tweaks to their products in order to be compliant across regions.
Yet, this is something that should be done ideally during the early stages of production – even before obtaining a license – such as in a sandbox environment for start-up firms, as it can otherwise make an awesome product uncompliant.
Mature fintech companies that have products in other jurisdictions can already approach a new license elsewhere by either optimizing a version of their product to the new framework or building a product from scratch based on their interpretation of related rules.
As the AMF aims to launch the new FIC division on Wednesday this week, the agency may prepare further content to share or make available on its website.