From 2019, interested parties can apply for the new FinTech license. It is intended to promote innovative financial companies that operate outside the core activities of banks. The Federal Council has therefore enacted a corresponding amendment in “Persons pursuant to Article 1b” of the Banking Act for the Promotion of Innovation (FinTech).
Institutions can accept public deposits of up to CHF 100 million (crowdlending) with the FinTech licence, provided these are not invested and no interest is paid. In addition, the institution must have its registered office and operate in Switzerland.
Already in February 2017, several measures to promote innovation in the financial sector were initiated. In August 2017, the “extension of the holding period for settlement accounts” and a “licence-free innovation room” (sandbox) came into force. The third measure, “Authorisation category in the Banking Act with simplified requirements”, will now follow on 1 January 2019: “The simplified requirements will be concretized, also as of 1 January 2019, by amendments to the Banking Ordinance (BankV), the Audit Supervision Ordinance (RAV) and the FINMA Fees and Charges Ordinance“.
Further amendments to the Banking Ordinance and consumer credit law will be added in April 2019. The Banking Ordinance will be extended to include “the sandbox of crowdlending business models”. This means that public deposits not exceeding CHF 1 million can be used both for commercial and industrial purposes and for private consumption.
FINMA is responsible on the one hand for granting the FinTech licence and on the other for monitoring the institutions.
(prepared: 05.12.2018, amended on 12.12.2018)
Jurius, Ausführungsbestimmungen zur FinTech-Bewilligung, in: Jusletter 3. Dezember 2018