ASIC cancels BBY’s licence

The Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) has cancelled the Australian financial services (AFS) licence held by BBY Limited (BBY), effective 24 June 2021. 

The decision followed the previous suspension in 2015 for a period of three years, which was subsequently extended in 2018, 2019 and 2020, respectively. 

The corporate regulator said that the terms of the cancellation would allow the BBY AFS licence to continue in effect until 31 March, 2022, for the following purposes only: 

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To ensure that clients of BBY continued to have access to an external dispute resolution scheme; 

To ensure that clients of BBY continued to have access to the National Guarantee Fund; 

To ensure that the receivers and liquidators had the legal authority to transfer a client’s “holder identification number” to another market participant with instructions from the client or to convert a licensee sponsored holding to an issuer sponsored holding in accordance with the Australian Securities Exchange (ASX) Settlement Operating Rules; and 

To ensure BBY continues to be required to have arrangements for compensating retail clients for loss or damages suffered as a result of breaches of the Corporations Act by the companies or their representatives. 

ASIC said that under the Corporations Act, it had the power to suspend or cancel an AFS licence, without holding a hearing, where the AFS licence was held by a body corporate which was placed under external administration. 

In May, 2015, the suspension followed the appointment of Stephen Vaughan and Ian Hall as joint administrators to BBY while Steven Parbery and Brett Lord were appointed receivers and managers of BBY. 

BBY had the right to seek a review of ASIC’s decision at the Administrative Appeals Tribunal. 

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