The Australian regulator has given award-winning NZ firm Shareclarity the tick of approval under a new fintech fast-track licensing process.
Daniel Kieser, Shareclarity founder, said with its newly-minted Australian Financial Services Licence (AFSL) the company was well-placed to tap into the huge demand for equity research across the Tasman from self-managed superannuation fund trustees and other direct investors.
Kieser said Shareclarity had identified a potential market in Australia of about 1.1 million SMSF members and other “self-directed investors” for its service, which aggregates research and ‘crowd-sourced’ information on NZX and ASX listed companies.
Shareclarity was included as part of the ‘Innovation Hub’ launched by the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) to help start-up fintech firms into the AFSL regime and “streamline the licensing process where possible to facilitate innovation”, the regulator’s website says.
Kieser said while breaking into the larger Australian market would be challenging, Shareclarity had developed a solid platform in NZ that should transfer seamlessly to the other side of the ditch.
“What we have learned is that people want to make their own investment decisions and they want to find investments that resonate with them personally,” he said. “They also want to learn about different companies in their own time, without complexity and with the benefit of fully transparent and independent information.”
Shareclarity, which went live in NZ last September, currently provides independent valuation metrics on 150 companies listed both on the NZ and Australian markets.
In addition to information supplied by its in-house team of analysts, Shareclarity allows users to “debate, propose changes to, vote on and ultimately inform the assumptions that underpin each evaluation”.
“With information, people could engage more constructively with their advisors, investors could self-manage more of their portfolios, students could apply their learnings, fund managers could challenge their perspectives and financial advisors could broaden the range of companies they advise on,” Kieser said.
While the platform provides some free access, users can access the entire system for $8 per month.
Kieser was named ‘emerging leader of the year’ at the INFINZ Awards held in Auckland this May.