ASIC reports on corporate finance regulation July to December 2016
ASIC has today published its sixth report on the regulation of corporate finance issues in Australia.
The report, which covers the period July to December 2016, provides companies and their advisers with insights into ASIC’s regulatory approach in the corporate finance sector to assist them in carrying out their associated legal and compliance obligations. It also demonstrates the important role ASIC plays in facilitating business transactions in Australia while ensuring that the protection of the investing community is maintained.
Report 512 ASIC regulation of corporate finance: July to December 2016 (REP 512) provides statistical data, highlights key focus areas, and includes relevant guidance about ASIC’s regulation of:
- fundraising transactions
- mergers and acquisitions
- corporate governance issues
- related party transactions
- financial reporting.
It details the approach ASIC takes in these areas, including the types of issues that have caused us to intervene and our response to novel issues seen in transactions during the period. The report also provides an overview of ASIC’s current policy initiatives in this space.
This sixth report highlights a number of regulatory initiatives ASIC has undertaken regarding the disclosure of financial information and business models in prospectuses, the marketing and due diligence practices of issuers conducting initial public offerings, and the adequacy of independent expert reports.
ASIC Commissioner John Price said, ‘These corporate finance regulation reports are an important tool for broadly informing corporate advisory practitioners about recent regulatory issues and areas of focus for ASIC. We encourage industry professionals to use these reports to identify regulatory issues that may be relevant to their current or future assignments. We also encourage practitioners to attend our bi-annual Corporate Finance Liaison meetings, held in capital cities around Australia, to engage directly on ASIC’s current policy and regulatory approach’.
ASIC’s Corporations team is responsible for regulating disclosure and conduct by corporations in Australia, with a particular focus on corporate transactions, such as equity fundraising, takeovers, schemes of arrangement, share buy-backs, compulsory acquisitions, employee share schemes and financial reporting.
As part of ASIC’s work, the team:
- assesses applications to ASIC for relief from certain parts of the Corporations Act 2001, including the financial reporting provisions in Chapter 2M, the takeover provisions in Chapter 6, and the fundraising provisions in Chapter 6D
- reviews certain documents lodged with ASIC relating to various corporate transactions.
The team also engages with stakeholders, publishes regulatory guidance, conducts targeted surveillances of identified risk areas and conducts deterrence activities.
From time to time, the Corporations team may also make submissions to the court or make applications to the Takeovers Panel on relevant matters.