Traditionally, startups, and more specifically fintech companies such as Fellow Funders, have been complaining about the excessive regulation that affects them. Fellow Funders published its first project in 2017, after having previously obtained the Crowdfunding license from the Comisión Nacional del Mercado de Valores (CNMV: National Securities Market Commission) in 2016. In order to obtain it we had to go through an intense and rigorous exercise, so as to adapt our structures, processes and internal policies to the guidelines set by the Law 5/2015 for the Promotion of Entrepreneurial Financing.
This exercise was quite costly, both in time (it took us three months to obtain the approval of the CNMV), and economically. However, and on the positive side, this allowed us to equip our platform with the necessary measures to manage it with professionalism, transparency and seriousness. All of this with the ultimate aim of safeguarding the interests of investors and entrepreneurs.
Entity for 2018. There are five strategic lines of action:
- Prioritization of supervision and promotion of market transparency and integrity.
- Contribution to enhancing the attractiveness and competitiveness of Spanish financial markets.
- Attention to and promotion of financial stability
- Financial education and attention to investors
- Encouraging technological developments
Our thoughts on the CNMV
Although these strategic lines are too generic, at Fellow Funders we have begun an exercise of reflection on how they could affect our activity. We would like to share several of these reflections with you:
Is it necessary the supervision of our activity by a entity such as the CNMV?
YES. In the development of an activity such as ours, where a relationship between investors and entrepreneurs is generated, there must be a supervision that ensures transparency and good practices. The CNMV must supervise and control, and even sanction if bad practices are proven.
Is it necessary to enhance the attractiveness of Spanish financial markets?
YES. It is essential to continue developing a Spanish financial system that provides the resources that our companies demand. The strengthening of the BME growth, the creation of a secondary market for alternative investment, and the improvement of tax incentives for private investors must be reviewed and need a great agreement of all the agents involved.
Is it necessary to enhance the competitiveness of Spanish financial markets?
YES. It is essential to increase the competitiveness of the financial agents in the markets, but with an indispensable prerequisite: they must all compete on equal terms. In our case, we find ourselves on too many occasions in competition with illegal platforms, open investment clubs and tax and financial advisors who act as financial intermediaries, investment “brokers” Although competition is always a good thing, it is necessary to be extremely prudent and ensure that all activities are regulated and controlled by the CNMV.
Is it necessary to promote the financial education of Spanish investors?
YES. Traditionally it has been said that Spaniards have a poor financial culture. This limits us to invest in conservative products and in many cases linked to the “brick”. At Fellow Funders we feel committed to the need of promoting financial education and we do it directly (face-to-face courses to our investors and users -startups valuation, cryptocurrencies, intellectual property, …) or indirectly through our platform (blog, newsletter, Fellow Funders academy, …).
We remain committed to help professionalize alternative investment and we believe that Equity Crowdfunding should be basic for the development and consolidation of the innovation fabric in Spain.
However, we want to respect at all times what we have called Fellow Funders commitments (trust, transparency, seriousnessand long-term monitoring of projects). This is the very raison d’être of our company. To help us maintain these commitments to our clients (investors and entrepreneurs) we consider the work of the CNMV a priority, which we see as a clear support that safeguards the interests of all.
Do you want to help us to achieve our goals? Do you want to join the Fellow Funders world? We are waiting for you!