All AIM companies that do not already have a Legal Entity Identifier (LEI) code need to obtain one by 30 November 2017. An LEI is a 20-character reference code that uniquely identifies a legally distinct entity that engages in a financial transaction.
The obligation for companies to have an LEI originates from the Transparency Directive. As the Directive applies only to EU regulated markets, such as the UK Main Market, but not to multilateral trading facilities or “exchange-regulated” markets, such as AIM, until now it has been unclear whether AIM companies would need to have an LEI. However, because market operators are required by the Markets in Financial Instruments Directive (MiFID II) and the Market Abuse Regulation to collate LEI codes for each issuer with securities admitted to trading on their markets, the London Stock Exchange has announced that all AIM companies will be required to obtain an LEI. The AIM application form for admission of new securities to trading to AIM has been amended to require an LEI.
All AIM companies that do not already have a LEI should now take steps to obtain one from the LEI service at the London Stock Exchange. There is an initial allocation cost of £115 + VAT and an annual maintenance cost of £70 + VAT. The LSE aims to turn around applications within 1-3 working days.
The LSE’s quick user guide to LEIs, How to Register for and Request an LEI, and other useful information can be found here. The LEI team can be contacted on +44 (0)20 7797 3300 or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
For background and further information see our LawNow article about Main Market companies published on 1 June 2017.