Related provisions for LR 8.6.1
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A person wanting to provide sponsor services4, and to be included on the list of sponsors, must apply to the FCA for approval as a sponsor by submitting the following to the Sponsor Supervision Team at the FCA's address:4(1) a completed Sponsor Firm Application Form; and4(2) [deleted]44(3) the application fee set out in 1FEES 31.[Note: The Sponsor's Firm Application Form can be found on the UKLA section of the FCA's website.]4
When considering an application for approval as a sponsor the FCA may:(1) carry out any enquiries and request any further information which it considers appropriate, including consulting other regulators;(2) request that the applicant or its specified representative answer questions and explain any matter the FCA considers relevant to the application; and6(3) take into account any information which it considers appropriate in relation to the application.22(4) [deleted]22[Note:
The FCA will approve a person as a sponsor only if it is satisfied that the person :4(1) is 4an authorised person or a member of a designated professional body;(2) is 4competent to provide8sponsor services4 in accordance with LR 88; and8(3) has appropriate 4systems and controls in place to carry out its role as a sponsor in accordance with LR 884.488
7Situations when the FCA may impose restrictions or limitations on the services a sponsor can provide include (but are not limited to) where it appears to the FCA that: (1) the employees of the person applying to be a sponsor whom it is proposed will perform sponsor services have no or limited relevant experience and expertise of providing certain types of sponsor services or of providing sponsor services to certain types of company; or(2) the person applying to be a sponsor does
8Where a person wishes to apply for approval as a sponsor to provide a limited range of sponsor services, it may do so on the basis that the FCA will impose a limitation or restriction on its approval (in accordance with section 88 of the Act). In such circumstances, the FCA will assess whether the person satisfies LR 8.6.5R (2) and LR 8.6.5R (3) taking into consideration the sponsor services to which the approval, as formally limited or restricted by the FCA, will relate.
A sponsor, or a 8person48applying for approval as a sponsor, will not satisfy LR 8.6.5R (2) unless it has:4888(1) 8submitted a sponsor declaration to the FCA:(a) for a person applying for approval as a sponsor, within three years of the date of its application; and(b) for a sponsor, within the previous three years; and(2) 8a sufficient number of employees with the skills, knowledge and expertise necessary for it to:(a) provide sponsor services in accordance with LR 8.3; (b) understand:(i)
8To determine whether a sponsor or a person applying for approval as a sponsor is able to satisfy LR 8.6.7R (1)(a), the FCA may consider whether any of the person'semployees have had material involvement in the provision of sponsor services that have required the submission of a sponsor declaration within the previous three years.
8In assessing whether a sponsor or a person applying for approval as a sponsor satisfies LR 8.6.7R (2), the FCA will consider a variety of factors including:(1) the nature, scale and complexity of its business;(2) the diversity of its operations; (3) the volume and size of transactions it undertakes;(4) the volume and size of transactions it anticipates undertaking in the following year; and (5) the degree of risk associated with the transactions it undertakes or anticipates
4In assessing whether a sponsor or a8person applying for approval as a sponsor can demonstrate it is competent in the areas required under LR 8.6.7R (2), the FCA may also take into account, where relevant, the guidance or advice on the listing rules or disclosure requirements9 and transparency rules5the sponsor or8person has given in circumstances other than in providing sponsor services.885
When considering a sponsor's ability to comply with LR 8.6.12 R, the FCA will consider8 a variety of factors, including:8(1) the nature, scale and complexity of its business;(2) the diversity of its operations;(3) the volume and size of the transactions it undertakes;4(4) the volume and size of the transactions it anticipates undertaking in the following year; and44(5) the degree of risk associated with the transactions it undertakes or anticipates undertaking in the following
6A sponsor must have effective arrangements to create and retain for six years accessible records which are sufficient to be capable of demonstrating that it has provided sponsor services and otherwise complied with its obligations under LR 8 including:88(1) where a declaration is to be submitted to the FCA:88(a) under LR 8.4.3R (1), LR 8.4.9R (1), LR 8.4.13R (1), LR 8.4.14R (2) or LR 8.4.17 R; or (b) pursuant to an appointment under LR 8.2.1R (5);the basis of each declaration
6In considering whether a sponsor has satisfied the requirements regarding sufficiency of records in LR 8.6.16A R, the FCA will consider whether the records would enable a person with general knowledge of the sponsor regime but no specific knowledge of the actual sponsor service undertaken to understand and verify the basis upon which material judgments have been made throughout the provision of the sponsor service.
4For each 8sponsor service requiring the submission of a document to the FCA or contact with the FCA, a sponsor must:8(1) at the time of submission or on first making contact with the FCA8notify the FCAof the name and contact details of a key 8contact within8 the sponsor for that matter8; and8888(2) ensure that its key8contact : 88(a) has8 sufficient knowledge about the listed company or applicant and the proposed matter8to be able to answer queries from the FCA about it; 888(b)
(1) 5The FCA may by notice in writing given to a sponsor require it to provide specified documents or specified information to the FCA.11(2) The sponsor must as soon as practicable provide to the FCA any documents or information that it has been required to provide under (1).11(3) This rule applies only to documents or information reasonably required by the FCA in connection with the performance of its functions in relation to a sponsor or a company that has appointed a spons
10Situations when the FCA may impose restrictions or limitations on the services a sponsor can provide include (but are not limited to) where it appears to the FCA that: (1) the sponsor has no or limited relevant experience and expertise of providing certain types of sponsor services or of providing sponsor services to certain types of company; or(2) the sponsor does not have systems and controls in place which are appropriate for the nature of the sponsor services which the sponsor
A sponsor must provide to the FCA on or after the first business day of January in each year but no later than the last business day of January in each year:77(1) written confirmation that it continues to satisfy the criteria for approval as a sponsor as set out in LR 8.6.5 R; and5(1A) for each of the criteria in that rule, evidence8 of the basis upon which it considers that it meets that criterion8.588(2) [deleted]55(3) [deleted]55(4) [deleted]55
A sponsor must notify the FCA in writing as soon as possible if:(1) 8(a) 8the sponsor ceases to satisfy the criteria for approval as a sponsor set out in LR 8.6.5 R or becomes aware of any matter which, in its reasonable opinion, would be relevant to the FCA in considering whether the sponsor continues to comply with LR 8.6.6 R; or(b) 8the sponsor becomes aware of any fact or circumstance relating to the sponsor or any of its employees engaged in the provision of sponsor services
8Where a sponsor is of the opinion that notwithstanding the circumstances giving rise to a notification obligation under LR 8.7.8 R, it continues to satisfy the ongoing criteria for approval as a sponsor in accordance with LR 8.6.6 R, it must include in its notification to the FCA a statement to that effect and the basis for its opinion.
8Examples of when a sponsor should submit a cancellation request pursuant to LR 8.7.22 R include, but are not limited to:(1) situations where the sponsor ceases to satisfy the ongoing criteria for approval as a sponsor in accordance with LR 8.6.6 R and, following a notification made under LR 8.7.8 R, there are no ongoing discussions with the FCA which could lead to the conclusion that the sponsor remains eligible; or(2) where there is a change of control of the sponsor or any
A request by a sponsor for its approval as a sponsor to be cancelled must be in writing and must include:(1) the sponsor's name;(2) a clear explanation of the background and reasons for the request;(3) the date on which the sponsor requests the cancellation to take effect;4(4) a signed confirmation that the sponsor will not provide any sponsor services8 as of the date the request is submitted to the FCA; and8(5) the name and contact details of the person at the sponsor with whom
10A request by a sponsor for its approval as a sponsor to be suspended must be in writing and must include: (1) the sponsor's name; (2) a clear explanation of the background and reasons for the request;(3) the date on which the sponsor requests the suspension to take effect;(4) a signed confirmation that the sponsor will not provide any sponsor services as of the date the request is submitted to the FCA; and(5) the name and contact details of the person at the sponsor with whom
11A sponsor may wish to consider submitting a suspension request under LR 8.7.25 R where the sponsor:(1) ceases to satisfy the ongoing criteria for approval as a sponsor in accordance with LR 8.6.6 R; (2) has notified the FCA in accordance with LR 8.7.8 R;(3) is having ongoing discussions with the FCA regarding remedial action; and(4) is undertaking remedial action which may result in the sponsor being able to satisfy the ongoing criteria for approval in accordance with LR 8.6.6
10The FCA may impose restrictions or limitations on the services a sponsor can provide or suspend a sponsor's approval under section 88E of the Act if the FCA considers it desirable to do so in order to advance one or more of its operational objectives.[Note: A statutory notice may be required under section 88F of the Act. Where this is the case, the procedure for giving a statutory notice is set out in DEPP.]
A1sponsor must in relation to a sponsor service:11(1) referred to in 3LR 8.2.1R (1) to (4), LR 8.2.1R (11), LR 8.2.1A R and, where relevant LR 8.2.1R (5)3, 1provide assurance to the FCA when required that the responsibilities of the company with or applying for a premium listing of its equity shares3 under the listing rules have been met;3(1A) 3provide to the FCA any explanation or confirmation in such form and within such time limit as the FCA reasonably requires for the purposes
3A sponsor must, for so long as it provides a sponsor service:(1) take such reasonable steps as are sufficient to ensure that any communication or information it provides to the FCA in carrying out the sponsor service is, to the best of its knowledge and belief, accurate and complete in all material respects; and(2) as soon as possible provide to the FCA any information of which it becomes aware that materially affects the accuracy or completeness of information it has previously
3Where a sponsor provides information to the FCA which is or is based on information it has received from a third party, in assessing whether a sponsor has complied with its obligations in LR 8.3.1AR (1) the FCA will have regard, amongst other things, to whether a sponsor has appropriately used its own knowledge, judgment and expertise to review and challenge the information provided by the third party.
The1sponsor will be the main point of contact with the FCA for any matter referred to in LR 8.2.1 The FCA expects to discuss all issues relating to a transaction and any draft or final document directly with the sponsor. However, in appropriate circumstances, the FCA will communicate directly with the company with or applying for a premium listing of its equity shares, or its advisers3.113
1If, in connection with the provision of a3sponsor service, a sponsor becomes aware that it, or a company with or applying for a premium listing of its equity shares is failing or has failed to comply with its obligations under3 the listing rules3, the3disclosure requirements7 or the transparency rules, the sponsor must promptly notify the FCA2.323
1In identifying conflicts of interest, sponsors should also take into account3 circumstances that could:333(1) 3create a perception in the market that a sponsor may not be able to perform its functions properly; or4(2) 3compromise the ability of a sponsor to fulfil its obligations to the FCA in relation to the provision of a sponsor service.
1LR 8.3.11 R recognises that there will be some conflicts of interest that cannot be effectively managed. Providing sponsor services in those cases could adversely affect both a sponsor's ability to perform its functions and market confidence in the sponsor regime. If in doubt about whether a conflict can be effectively managed a sponsor should discuss the issue with the FCA before it decides if it can provide a sponsor service.
6If a listed company or applicant appoints more than one sponsor to provide a sponsor service, the FCA expects the sponsors to co-operate with each other in relation to the sponsor service, including by establishing arrangements for the sharing of information as appropriate having regard to the sponsor service.
A sponsor must not submit to the FCA an application on behalf of an applicant, in accordance with LR 3, unless it has come to a reasonable opinion, after having made due and careful enquiry, that:(1) the applicant has satisfied all requirements of the listing rules relevant to an application for admission to listing;(2) the applicant has satisfied all applicable requirements set out in the prospectus rules unless the home Member State of the applicant is not, or will not be, the
A sponsor must:(1) submit a completed Sponsor's Declaration on an Application for Listing to the FCA either:2(a) on the day the FCA is to consider the application for approval of the prospectus and prior to the time the prospectus is approved; or(b) at a time agreed with the FCA, if the FCA is not approving the prospectus or if it is determining whether a document is an equivalent document1;(2) submit a completed Shareholder Statement or Pricing Statement, as applicable, to the
A sponsor must not submit to the FCA an application on behalf of an applicant, in accordance with LR 3 (Listing applications), unless it has come to a reasonable opinion, after having made due and careful enquiry, that:(1) the applicant has satisfied all requirements of the listing rules relevant to an application for admission to listing;(2) the applicant has satisfied all applicable requirements set out in the prospectus rules unless the home Member State of the applicant is
A sponsor must:(1) submit a completed Sponsor's Declaration on an Application for Listing to the FCA either:(a) on the day the FCA is to consider the application for approval of the prospectus and prior to the time the prospectus is approved; or11(b) at a time agreed with the FCA if the FCA is not approving the prospectus or if it is determining whether a document is an equivalent document1;(2) submit a completed Shareholder Statement or Pricing Statement, as applicable, to the
A sponsor must not submit to the FCA, on behalf of a listed company, a circular regarding a transaction set out in LR 8.4.11 R for approval8, unless the sponsor has come to a reasonable opinion, after having made due and careful enquiry, that:8(1) the listed company has satisfied all requirements of the listing rules relevant to the production of a class 1 circular or other circular;(2) the transaction will not have an adverse impact on the listed company's ability to comply with
A sponsor acting on a transaction falling within LR 8.4.11 R must:(1) submit a completed Sponsor's Declaration for the Production of a Circular to the FCA on the day the circular is to be approved by the FCA and prior to the time the circular is approved;(2) submit a completed Pricing Statement, if applicable, to the FCA by 9 a.m on the day the FCA is to consider the application; and(3) ensure that all matters known to it which, in its reasonable opinion, should be taken into
In relation to a proposed transfer under LR 5.4A, if a sponsor is appointed6 in accordance with LR 8.2.1A R, it6 must:6(1) submit a letter to the FCA setting out how the issuer satisfies each listing rule requirement relevant to the category of listing to which it wishes to transfer, by no later than when the first draft of the circular or announcement required under LR 5.4A is submitted;(2) submit a completed Sponsor’s Declaration for a Transfer of Listing7 to the FCA for the
A sponsor must not submit to the FCA on behalf of an issuer a final circular or announcement for approval or a Sponsor’s Declaration for a Transfer of Listing7, unless it has come to a reasonable opinion, after having made due and careful enquiry, that:7(1) the issuer satisfies all eligibility requirements of the listing rules that are relevant to the new category to which it is seeking to transfer;(2) the issuer has satisfied all requirements relevant to the production of the
6A sponsor acting on a reverse takeover where the issuer decides to make a disclosure announcement under LR 5.6.15 G must:(1) submit to the FCA under LR 5.6.17 R a completed Sponsor’s Declaration for a Reverse Takeover Announcement7;(2) not submit to the FCA the Sponsor’s Declaration for a Reverse Takeover Announcement7 unless it has come to a reasonable opinion, after having made due and careful enquiry, that it is reasonable for the issuer to provide the declarations described
A shell company6, or in the case of a shell company6with a premium listing, its sponsor, must contact the FCA as early as possible:(1) before announcing a reverse takeover which has been agreed or is in contemplation, to discuss whether a suspension of listing is appropriate; or (2) where details of the reverse takeover have leaked, to request a suspension.
(1) A listed company or applicant must notify the FCA in writing immediately of the resignation or dismissal of any sponsor that it had appointed.(2) In the case of a dismissal, the reasons for the dismissal must be included in the notification.(3) The notification must be copied to the sponsor.
Where a listed company or applicant appoints more than one sponsor to provide a sponsor service4, the company must:(1) ensure that one sponsor4 takes responsibility for contact with the FCA in respect of administrative arrangements for the sponsor service4; and244(2) inform the FCA promptly4, in writing, of the name and contact details of the sponsor taking responsibility under (1).44
(1) The FCA may dispense with or modify the listing rules in such cases and by reference to such circumstances as it considers appropriate (subject to the terms of EU directives and the Act).(2) A dispensation or modification may be either unconditional or subject to specified conditions.(3) If an issuer or sponsor has applied for, or been granted, a dispensation or modification, it must notify the FCA immediately it becomes aware of any matter which is material to the relevance
2Where a listing rule refers to consultation with the FCA, submissions should be made in writing other than in circumstances of exceptional urgency or in the case of a submission from a sponsor in relation to the provision of a sponsor service.Address for correspondenceNote:The FCA's address for correspondence is:The Financial Conduct Authority25 The North ColonnadeCanary WharfLondon, E14 5HSTel: 020 7066 8333www.fca.org.uk/markets/ukla
1When considering whether to cancel a sponsor's approval on its own initiative, the FCA will take into account all relevant factors, including, but not limited to, the following: (1) the competence of the sponsor; (2) the adequacy of the sponsor's systems and controls; (3) the sponsor's history of compliance with the listing rules; (4) the nature, seriousness and duration of the suspected failure of the sponsor to meet (at
The1 following documents signed by a sponsor (if a sponsor is required under LR 8) or by a duly authorised officer of the applicant (if a sponsor is not required under LR 8) 1must be submitted, in final form, to the FCA before 9 a.m. on the day the FCA is to consider the 1application:1(1) a completed Shareholder Statement, in the case of an applicant that is applying for a listing of a class of 1shares4 for the first time; or [Note: see LR 8.4.3 R and LR 8.4.9 R1];414(2) a completed
If written confirmation of the number of shares4to be allotted pursuant to a board resolution1 cannot be submitted to the FCA by the deadline set out in LR 3.3.2 R or the number of shares4to be admitted is lower than the number notified under LR 3.3.2 R,1 written confirmation of the number of shares4to be allotted or admitted must be provided to the FCA by 1the applicant or its sponsor at least one hour before the admission to listing is to become effective.14144141
The following documents should be provided in writing to the FCA:(1) confirmation from the listed company that:(a) negotiation does not allow time for shareholder approval;(b) all alternative methods of financing have been exhausted and the only option remaining is to dispose of a substantial part of their business;(c) by taking the decision to dispose of part of the business to raise cash, the directors are acting in the best interests of the company and shareholders as a whole
(1) If it appears to the FCA that there is, or there may be, a breach of the listing rules or the disclosure requirements6 and transparency rules4 by an issuer with a premium listing4, the FCA may in writing require the issuer to appoint a sponsor to advise the issuer on the application of the listing rules, the disclosure requirements6 and the transparency rules4.4(2) If required to do so under (1), an issuer must, as soon as practicable, appoint a sponsor to advise it on the
(1) If an issuer wishes to transfer its category of equity shares2listing it must notify the FCA of the proposal.(2) The notification must be made as early as possible and in any event not less than 20 business days before it sends the circular required under LR 5.4A.4 R (2)(a) or publishes the announcement required under LR 5.4A.5 R (2).(3) The notification must include:(a) an explanation of why the issuer is seeking the transfer;(b) if a sponsor's letter is not required under
A company with, or applying for, a premium listing of its equity shares5 must appoint a sponsor on each occasion that it:4(1) is required to submit any of the following documents to the FCA in connection with6 an application for admission of equity shares5 to premium listing6:66(a) a prospectus, supplementary prospectus7 or equivalent document1; or6(b) a certificate of approval from another competent authority; or6(c) a summary document as required by PR 1.2.3R (8); or6(d) listing
(1) The FCA will not automatically suspend, cancel or restore the listing of securities at the request of an overseas exchange or overseas authority (for example, if listing of a listed3issuer'ssecurities are suspended, cancelled or restored on its home exchange).(2) The FCA will not normally suspend the listing of securities where there is a trading halt for the security on its home exchange.(3) If a listedissuer3 requests a suspension, cancellation or restoration of the listing
2Where a listed company proposes to rely on LR 13.5.27R (1)(b), its sponsor must submit to the FCA an assessment of the appropriateness of the standards applicable to an investment exchange or multilateral trading facility against the factors set out in LR 13.5.27AG (1) to (7) and any other matters that it considers should be noted. The assessment must be submitted before or at the time the listed company submits the draft class 1 circular.
3In the areas set out below, the Act expressly requires the FCA to prepare and publish statements of policy or procedure on the exercise of its enforcement and investigation powers and in relation to the giving of statutory notices. (1) section 63C requires the FCA to publish a statement of its policy on the imposition, and amount, of financial penalties on persons that perform a controlled function without approval; (1-A) 1section 63ZD requires the FCA, among other things, to