Investment service providers
Application for authorisation
In accordance with the Investment Services Act (747/2012(AIFM Act, 162/2014), the activities of investment service providers can only be pursued by entities that have been granted authorisation.
A written application is submitted to the Financial Supervisory Authority (FIN-FSA), with supporting documents attached. We recommend that the applicant entity contacts the FIN-FSA before applying to clarify the procedure. Application for authorisation must be made either in Finnish or Swedish.
Delivery of authorisation application documents to the Financial Supervisory Authority
Investment service providers applying for authorisation must submit the application document to FIN-FSA Registry: kirjaamo(at)finanssivalvonta.fi.
Withdrawal of authorisation
If the investment service provider wishes to withdraw its authorisation, it must submit a withdrawal application to the FIN-FSA.
Cross-border activities and branches
Branches and cross-border provision of services from Finland to abroad
A Finnish service provider may engage in activities falling within the scope of its authorisation in a foreign country either by establishing a branch or providing services across the border. Commencement of activities requires either a notification or an authorisation procedure depending on whether the activities are conducted in another EEA member state or outside the EEA.
Activities in EEA member states
Based on the so-called principle of single authorisation, an investment firm authorised in one EEA member state may engage in activities within the scope of its authorisation in the entire EEA area either by establishing a branch or providing services across the border.
If a service provider authorised in Finland intends to establish a branch in another EEA member state, it must notify the Financial Supervisory Authority (FIN-FSA). The FIN-FSA notifies the authority of the future host country within three (3) months, appending the additional information required of the supervisory authority by the Directive. Activities may only be commenced once a response has been received from the authority of the host country or two (2) months have passed since the host authority received the notification.
If a service provider authorised in Finland intends to provide services across the border in another EEA member state, it must notify the FIN-FSA. The FIN-FSA files a notification with the authority of the future host country within one (1) month. Activities may be commenced immediately after the FIN-FSA has made this notification.
An investment firm may also appoint a tied agent to act on its behalf in the EEA. If a service provider authorised in Finland intends to provide services across the border to another EEA country, it must notify the FIN-FSA of its intention with the notification form available on this website. The FIN-FSA files a notification with the authority of the future host country within one (1) month. Activities may be commenced immediately after the FIN-FSA has made this notification.
Activities outside the EEA
If a Finnish investment firm establishes a branch outside the EEA member states, it needs authorisation granted by the FIN-FSA.
Obtaining authorisation requires that supervision of the branch is effective and covers all operating units. Establishing a branch must not, moreover, jeopardise the activities of the investment firm.
A Finnish investment firm may provide services across the border outside the EEA without having to establish a branch. In that case, the FIN-FSA must be notified in advance as to what services are intended to be provided as well as where and how they will be provided. The supervised entity must clarify the requirements for the activities set by the host country.
Branches and cross-border provision of services from abroad to Finland
A foreign service provider may, with certain exceptions, conduct its activities in Finland either by establishing a branch or by providing its services across the border. Commencement of activities is contingent on the authorisation or notification procedure.
Provision of services to Finland from the EEA
The FIN-FSA must be notified if a service provider from another EEA country intends to establish a branch of an investment firm in Finland. Cross-border provision of services also requires the FIN-FSA to be notified by the supervisory authority of the home state. We keep a list of such notifications.
Investment firms from another EEA country may provide services referred to in the Investment Services Act via tied agents.
To supervise the lawfulness of the activities of tied agents, the FIN-FSA maintains a public register (Register of Tied Agents), to which investment firms notify their tied agents. Tied agents must be registered in the public register of the member state in which the tied agents in question are established. The FIN-FSA’s register contains all of the tied agents operating in Finland.
Provision of services to Finland from outside the EEA
If an investment firm coming from outside the EEA intends to establish a branch in Finland, it must apply for authorisation from the FIN-FSA.
The activities of the investment firm must comply with the regulations in force in Finland. Furthermore, the financial operating basis and governance must meet the requirements set for reliable activities.
The domestic legislation of the investment firm must correspond to internationally approved rules for financial supervision as well as recommendations concerning the prevention of criminal abuse of the financial system. Supervision must be adequately effective. In connection with applying for authorisation, the investment firm must give a statement on the protective system established for the benefit of the depositors and investors of the branch, or the lack thereof.
An investment firm authorised in a country outside the EEA may provide services across the border to professional clients and approved counterparties when it is entered in the register of the European Securities and Markets Authority (ESMA). Registration is possible when the Commission has made an equivalence decision relating to the regulation and supervision of the home state applying for registration.