Frequently Asked Questions: Securities and Exchange Commission Innovation Focus


  1. What is regulatory innovation?

It is the regulatory response to advancement in financial innovation


  1. Is the plan by Regulators to regulate innovation an attempt to stifle innovation and entrepreneurship?

No. Rather it’s a concerted effort to support innovation and make it safe for investors, operators and the Capital Market in general


  1. What internal structure has the Securities & Exchange Commission introduced so far, to support innovation?

The SEC has created a Fintech and Innovation Office (FINO) to facilitate internal & external information dissemination, communication with innovators and provide guidance on regulatory requirements


  1. What other roles does the Fintech and Innovation Office (FINO) play?


It reviews submissions from Fintech firms and coordinates collaboration between operational departments of the SEC which supervise and monitor products and processes in the Capital Market


  1. How can one access the Fintech and Innovation Office?
  • Via
  • via the sec to fill the enquiry form or use the chat feature
  • visit the FINO at SEC Head Office in Abuja


  1. Does the SEC have an engagement plan with the Fintech community?

Yes the SEC has an engagement timetable (place link here) with various discovered Fintech Firms. This engagement timetable will be expanded as more firms are discovered



  1. What other external mechanisms has the SEC deployed to understand the Fintech eco-system?

The SEC has inaugurated the Fintech Roadmap Committee in November 2018, comprising Fintech entrepreneurs, technology experts, Capital Market trade groups, financial sector regulators, banks, legal firms, innovation hubs and Fintech organizations


  1. What is the mandate of the Fintech Roadmap committee?

To produce a snapshot of the current status of Fintech developments in the Nigerian Capital Market and propose a holistic plan for facilitating & developing Fintech as a tool for deepening the Market


  1. What is the status of progress made by the Fintech Roadmap Committee?

The Committee has produced a draft report, presently undergoing reviews.


  1. How many Fintech and innovation firms has the SEC engaged so far?

The SEC has engaged over fifty (50) firms via its assessment form (place link here) on the SEC website and through formal meetings


  1. Has the SEC engaged with any innovation hub in the country?

Yes the SEC has engaged with innovation hubs in Abuja and Lagos and is in constant communication with them.


  1. Have any Fintech firms come forward to apply for regulation?

Yes a number of Fintech Firms have applied for permission to operate.


  1. Has any Fintech Firm received approval from the SEC?

Two Fintech firms have been approved for registration by SEC Management


  1. What is the status of the registration process of Fintech firms approved by the SEC?

Some Rules are in the process of being amended to facilitate their registration


  1. How long before the registration is achieved?

Before the end of the fourth quarter of 2019


  1. Will Fintech firms already operating be closed down immediately they come forward to engage the SEC?

The SEC will not close down any firm immediately it comes forward. Rather the firm will be assessed on its risk exposures and guided towards coming under SEC regulation. However, if its operations are too risky for investors, it will have to accept and operationalize SEC guidance on investor protection and market stability.


  1. How long will it take to receive SEC approval to offer a Fintech product or process?

The length of time depends on the nature of product and whether or not the SEC has existing Rules or Guidelines to regulate them.