Further to our article on the publication of the Guideline on Fit and Proper Criteria for Licensing of Money Lenders, on 29 January 2021, the Companies Registry (the “CR”) published another Guideline on Submission of Business Plan by Applicant of a Money Lenders Licence (the “Guideline”).
Currently, applicants for a money lenders licence under section 8 of the Money Lenders Ordinance (the “MLO”) are required to submit a business plan with their application to show that the applicants have comprehensive understanding of the money-lending business and are ready to carry on the business. The CR sets out the key information that the applicant should include in its business plan:-
- basic information of the applicant;
- background of the applicant, including applicant’s history relevant to the money-lending business and source of funds;
- key executives of the applicant’s senior management;
- organizational structure, attaching an organizational chart of the applicant showing relationship between the applicant and other members of the group;
- human resources, including information on the composition of the applicant’s management team and other employees;
- proposed nature of money-lending business and target customers;
- details of operation, profitability, financial information and bank account details of the money-lending business;
- details of the applicant’s compliance system, including the use of digitalized systems and the use of intermediary or outsourced services for anti-money laundering or counter-financing of terrorism (the “AML/CFT”) purposes; and
- a confirmation by the applicant’s director that he/she is fully aware of and will comply with the MLO, the licensing conditions and the AML/CFT requirements for money lenders.
In the Guideline, the CR specifies that failure to provide the necessary information in the business plan may result in a delay in the process of the application. Failure to do so may also cast doubt on whether the applicant is a fit and proper person to carry on business as a money lender. The Guideline came into effect on 1 April 2021.
For assistance with application for a money lenders licence or drafting of a business plan, please contact us today.