By Yon Heong Tung for e27
Singapore-based peer-to-peer (p2p) lending platform MoolahSense has announced today it has been awarded a full Capital Markets Services (CMS) licence from the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS).
The licence enables MoolahSense to provide investors from classes including retail investors, high net worth individuals and private funds to access a new asset category of SME loans by applying a full range of exemptions under the Securities and Futures Act. This includes the offering of securities to investors under the Small Offers and Private Placement exemptions.
This development comes just weeks after two Singapore-based crowdfunding startups, Funding Societies and Fundnel were awarded in-principle CMS. Earlier this year, FundedHere, an equity-based and lending crowdfunding platform, was also given a CMS.
However, the difference between an in-principle CMS and a full CMS is that the former requires platform operators to satisfy certain conditions/requirements by MAS before the actual licence is issued.
It also is limited to accredited investors only, meaning only the following can apply:
- Individuals whose net personal assets exceed S$2 million (US$1.41 million) or
- Individuals whose income in the preceding 12 months is not less than S$300,000 (US$213,000), or
- Corporations with net assets that exceed S$10 million (US$7.1 million).
“At MoolahSense, we have always envisioned the importance of enlarging the financial sphere by increasing participation from retail investors to avail additional sources of finance to SMEs. Thus, We are delighted that investors will now be able to readily access and invest, from as little as S$1,000 (US$750),” said Lawrence Yong, CEO of MoolahSense, in an official press statement.
“In so doing, we are prepared to take on increased operational and regulatory standards that comes with serving a much bigger group of investors, as compared to other licenced platforms who solely serve accredited and professional investors,” he added.
To date, MoolahSense has helped raise close to S$20 million (US$14.2 million) for over 100 companies, including Apple Premium Reseller EpiCentre, which is an SGX listed company.
It has plans to expand its footprint to more markets in Southeast Asia.
First appeared at e27