This means that in-scope crowdfunding service providers (CSPs) who were already carrying on in-scope crowdfunding services on 10 November 2021 can continue to provide those services on a transitional basis until 10 November 2023, provided that their authorisation application is submitted to their national competent authority (NCA) before 1 October 2022.
The possibility of an extension was first mooted by ESMA in July 2021 in light of concerns that the 10 November 2022 date could result in disruptions in some of the larger national markets due to NCAs being unable to re-authorise all existing platforms by 10 November 2022, and due to the work involved in existing CSPs adapting their business operations to a broader and more granular framework.
Separately, the Commission has also adopted the eleven Level 2 measures prepared by ESMA under the Regulation, which are now subject to scrutiny by the European Parliament and EU Council before being published in the Official Journal. The remaining two Level 2 measures were the subject of final reports from the EBA to the Commission in October 2021 (individual portfolio management of loans) and May 2022 (information to clients), and await adoption by the Commission.
The crowdfunding service provider is obliged to present an information sheet with each crowdfunding offer containing key investor information. It must not exceed six pages and must meet strict information requirements. This includes a disclaimer and warnings regarding the risks associated with that specific investment. This creates clarity for the investor. You know what to expect and you can make a well-considered decision.
One of the core values of the RCSP is investor protection. This is the main purpose of this new regulation. Investors will have to undergo an investor test, which will test the investor’s experience, knowledge, investment goals and financial situation. This applies to all investors who wish to continue investing, unless he or she qualifies as an experienced investor. This test will also check whether the investor is aware of the risk associated with an investment. This review must be repeated every two years. Based on this, the crowdfunding service provider can give advice regarding the suitability of the crowdfunding projects for the non-experienced investor.
Also, an inexperienced investor will receive a warning from the crowdfunding service provider when he or she invests more than 5% of his or her assets. If an investor fails the investor test, he or she may not invest more than 5% of the assets. If you pass the test, you may invest more than 5%, but only after a warning, acceptance and proof of awareness of the risks.
The RCSP allows a crowdfunding service provider to offer its services in all countries in the Union. This also has advantages for the investor. More international offer is being created for the investor. The inexperienced investor also gets more flexibility thanks to the pre-contractual ‘cooling off’ period. They can withdraw their investment without giving any reason. This reflection period is four calendar days and starts when the investor shows interest. Investors also have a right of withdrawal of fourteen days in the case of distance selling.
Finally, the reliability. Knowing that a crowdfunding service provider is licensed and meets strict requirements creates a safe feeling for you as an investor.
This Statement does not constitute legal advice or consultation but is rather an expression of Dimitrova, Staykova & Partners Law Firm team’s opinion.