di Stefania Peveraro
There is great expectation on the market for what will be the innovations introduced by Consob, the Italian financial markets’ Supervisory Authority, in its Regulation on equity crowdfunding, which will be published very soon. That’s because it could contain an epochal novelty for the sector.
This is why a speech by Consob’s Tony Marcelli last week at Villasimius in Sardinia was much awaited by attendees at the usual annual convention of Frigiolini & Partners Merchant, one of the most active advisors in the structuring of minibonds, in particular short-term.
Mr. Marcelli let it understand that the changes to the regulation will not be long in coming and he underlined the effort made on the consultation document of last June by the Authority in order to widen the range of potential investors to some categories already authorized to operate elsewhere in Europe, such as subjects that owns more than 250k euros in financial assets including liquidity, or who are “under investment advice” or “asset management” advice.
The market actually expects that the regulation will be modified so as to allow the possibility of subscribing minibonds to other types of investors with respect to those currently allowed with positive consequences for issuing companies. More in detail, the operators expect Consob to exercise the delegation provided for by the 2019 Budget Law and introduce a new category of subjects (with respect to classic professional investors and so-called on request professional investors) that will be allowed to invest in minibonds through the equity crowdfunding portals. If this happens it is reasonable to think that the demand for minibonds can grow significantly and that this will result in an increase in the price of minibonds and a reduction in rates, thus benefiting SMEs that will be less hostage by institutional investors (see here a previous article by BeBeez).
Also on the occasion of the convention, in his speech Gianpaolo Pavia, head of development and support area, Mediocredito Centrale Instruments for Guarantee Management, recalled that since March 15 the range of companies benefiting from the SME Guarantee Fund public guarantee has been extended and that coverage has been extended to for SMEs with greater difficulty in accessing credit (see here a previous article by BeBeez). However, among the innovations introduced by the Decreto Crescita there is a crucial one which still requires a formal passage, with the issuing of an implementing decree, ie the possibility that the public guarantee will be transferred to the purchaser of a minibond on the secondary market (also a private investor as long as legitimized to purchase under the new regulation, if Consob will provide for it) when such minibond was already at the origin secured by the MCC guarantee.