Raise finance

Rules and regulations

For AIM Companies and Nominated Advisers

Please find below rules and regulations for AIM Companies and Nominated Advisers

30.03.18, PDF, 656.53KB
01.11.19, PDF, 512.03KB
01.10.18, PDF, 814.78KB
AIM Notes

Please find below documents related to the AIM notes

Disciplinary Forms

Forms for AIM Disciplinary Procedures and Appeals Handbook

Forms

Company application forms

Please find below company application forms

Nominated Adviser application forms

Please find below nominated adviser application forms.

Fees

Issuers

Please find below fee information for Issuers.

In addition, our fee calculator is available on our calculating fees page.

Guides

For companies

Please find below guides for companies

For investors

Please find below guides for investors

Inside Aim

Coronavirus – Temporary measures for publication of half-yearly reports

This Inside AIM sets out temporary changes relating to an AIM company’s obligation to notify half-yearly reports in accordance with the AIM Rules for Companies (“AIM Rules”).

Inside AIM dated 26 March 2020 set out our intention to keep under review the requirements for reporting of half-yearly reports pursuant to AIM Rule 18. Currently under the AIM Rules, an AIM company must notify its half-yearly report without delay and in any event within three months from the end of the period to which it relates. 

From today, AIM Regulation will permit AIM companies that need extra time to prepare their half-yearly report an additional one month in which to notify them. This extension is temporary whilst the UK faces the disruption resulting from the coronavirus pandemic. We will keep these temporary measures under review and when the disruption to AIM companies eases, we will announce an orderly transition to standard reporting periods under AIM Rules 18 and 191.

An AIM Company wishing to utilise the additional one month period must notify via an RIS its intention to do so prior to the AIM company’s reporting deadline under AIM Rule 18 and the Company’s nominated adviser must separately inform AIM Regulation.

An AIM company should continue to consider its AIM Rules disclosure obligations in conjunction with the advice and guidance of its nominated adviser.

 

Inside AIM - COVID19 Half Yearly Reports

 

Date: 09 June 2020


1 The accounting period to which an extension for annual audited accounts may be sought pursuant to Inside AIM dated 26 March 2020 is superseded by this Inside AIM and such extensions will be available until further notice of an orderly transition back to standard reporting periods.

Coronavirus - Temporary measures for publication of annual audited accounts

This Inside AIM sets out temporary changes relating to an AIM company’s obligation to publish annual audited accounts in accordance with the AIM Rules for Companies (“AIM Rules”).

The unprecedented events of recent weeks mean that there may be circumstances where an AIM company is unable to publish its annual audited accounts under normal legal and regulatory reporting deadlines.   

Currently under the AIM Rules, an AIM company has six months after the end of its financial year to publish its annual audited accounts.  This reporting requirement is consistent with the legal filing deadline for UK incorporated public companies under the Companies Act 2006.

We note the joint initiative of the Department of Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy and Companies House, to allow UK companies to apply to Companies House for a three month extension of the legal filing deadline [1]. 

Noting the above and to assist AIM companies in the preparation of their annual accounts in the current difficult circumstances, from today an AIM company will also be able to apply to AIM Regulation for a three month extension to the reporting deadline for the publication of its annual audited accounts pursuant to AIM Rule 19. This extension will be available for AIM companies with financial year ends between 30 September 2019 to 30 June 2020.

The request for extension must be made to AIM Regulation by the nominated adviser, prior to the AIM company’s current AIM Rules reporting deadline.

London Stock Exchange will keep under review the operation of the AIM Rules and in particular, the requirements for reporting of half yearly reports under AIM Rule 18.

 

Coronavirus audited accounts

 

Date: 26 March 2020

 

[1] Companies to receive 3-month extension period to file accounts during COVID-19

 

Coronavirus - Temporary measures

This Inside AIM sets out temporary measures that will be implemented by AIM Regulation to support AIM companies and nominated advisers as they seek to navigate some of the challenges arising from the unprecedented Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

Until further notice, AIM Regulation will be applying discretion to the application of certain of the AIM Rules for Companies and the AIM Rules for Nominated Advisers (“AIM Rules”), as set out below.  We will continue to keep the situation under review, in particular the potential impact on financial reporting and will provide further guidance as necessary. 

Temporary suspension of trading

Timely and accurate disclosure is a key requirement under the AIM Rules and all AIM companies should continue to meet their disclosure obligations without delay. It is therefore important that nominated advisers have a sound understanding of how their AIM companies are planning and responding to the events as they unfold, so that they are able to make disclosures in accordance with their AIM Rules obligations.

However, we recognise that an AIM company may face material new developments as a consequence of the restrictions and challenges being caused by Coronavirus (COVID-19). Accordingly, where an AIM company requires more time to make a fully compliant notification, than would be the case in ordinary circumstances, the nominated adviser should approach AIM Regulation to discuss whether a temporary suspension is required.  Given the importance of disclosure, such a request will need to fully explain why the suspension is appropriate in the circumstances and any decision to suspend is at the discretion of AIM Regulation. If granted, such a temporary suspension will be for a limited period to enable the AIM company to make a fully compliant notification.

Suspended AIM companies

Currently where an AIM company has been suspended for more than six months, pursuant to AIM Rule 41 the company’s securities will be cancelled. We appreciate that, given the logistical challenges during this period, further time might be required to resolve the reason for suspension. Accordingly, we will be using discretion to extend the period to 12 months for any AIM company that has been suspended between 30 September 2019 and 1 July 2020.

Engagement responsibilities for a nominated adviser

When taking on a new client, as part of its due diligence, a nominated adviser is generally required to undertake a site visit to the AIM company’s material place of operations and meet the directors and key managers. Where travel restrictions and social distancing measures make it difficult to meet this obligation, provided that a nominated adviser uses alternative measures that are reasonably available (such as virtual meetings), we will temporarily suspend the requirement for a physical site visit. Once any applicable restrictions have been lifted, nominated advisers will be expected to undertake the site visit in order to fulfil its obligations under the AIM Rules.

We also recognise that in the current circumstances for the purposes of providing directors’ AIM Rules education, nominated advisers are likely to be undertaking telephone or virtual meetings with directors instead of physical meetings.

 

Coronavirus temporary measures

 

Date: 20 March 2020

Staffing of Nominated Advisers

We work closely with nominated advisers to ensure that they can maintain up to date and relevant AIM knowledge within their corporate finance functions to enable them to carry out the obligations they owe to London Stock Exchange under the AIM Rules for Nominated Advisers (“Nomad Rules”). 

In this Inside AIM, we set out answers to some of the frequently asked questions in respect of staffing, particularly taking into account wider market conditions and trends.

Relevant Transactions

Market conditions can have an impact on the number of Relevant Transactions undertaken, as defined in Nomad Rule 5. Rule 5 provides discretion for us to consider equivalent work undertaken in respect of IPOs or other major public transactions where the work performed by the nominated adviser is similar to that of an AIM admission. When considering alternative transactions, we look for evidence that firms have undertaken work equivalent to the Admission Responsibilities set out in Schedule Three of the Nomad Rules and that the firm has retained overall management and responsibility for the transaction and transaction documentation. Below are examples of transactions we may consider accepting [1]:

  • Schemes of arrangement: a UK takeover which is effected by way of scheme of arrangement where the nominated adviser has acted for the offeree and has led the drafting of the main scheme document.
  • Aborted transactions: Transactions (that would otherwise be Relevant Transactions) which do not complete due to market conditions and where all relevant due diligence has been completed and the relevant documents are in final form.
  • Complex Relevant Transactions: AIM Regulation would usually only expect one approved Qualified Executive (“QE”) to be the lead adviser on each Relevant Transaction, or a maximum of two if the Relevant Transaction is sufficiently complex to require it. Where a nominated adviser firm considers a Relevant Transaction to be complex, details should be provided of the roles of the two QEs executives as well as an explanation of why both should be credited with acting in a lead corporate advisory role.

We would also highlight that, as set out in Nomad Rule 5 and Inside AIM (Issue 1), both an applicant QE and an existing QE may cite the same Relevant Transaction if they have each been involved to an appropriate extent.

QE Applications

We have regular conversations with nominated advisers about their current and future resourcing plans and we work with, and support, nominated advisers as they develop their wider corporate finance staffing. One question we receive regularly is whether a QE in an existing firm will automatically transfer as a QE if they change firm or join a firm which is considering applying to become a nominated adviser.

QE status is considered in the context of the firm and is not an individual qualification The wider staffing of the nominated adviser function beyond the minimum number of QEs is an important consideration for us (at both a junior and senior level). Accordingly, QE applications are considered in the context of the firm’s overall staffing, management controls, senior management supervision (of the nominated adviser team), junior support and compliance function. Underpinning this is the principle that QE status is not an individual qualification, but a designation granted to the firm denoting those individuals within the firm who are authorised by the Exchange to lead AIM Rules advice for that nominated adviser. Accordingly, QE status is not automatically transferable.
A number of factors will be taken into account when considering QE applications We will consider applications for QEs where a firm supports that individual to act as a QE on its behalf.  Where an applicant is not able to demonstrate that all the required Relevant Transactions have been completed we may use the provisions of Nomad Rule 27 such as the requirement for ongoing supervision, as a condition of approval. In such circumstances we will look at a range of factors. For example, we will seek evidence that the applicant has a sound understanding of the UK corporate finance market and AIM in particular. We will also consider the support the applicant will receive and will take into account the wider staffing and controls within the firm.
Maintenance of standards is our key objective The criteria for QE approval are designed to ensure that a nominated adviser firm is in a position to meet its obligations owed to London Stock Exchange and thus to maintain standards across the market. We expect nominated adviser firms to bear this in mind when supporting a QE application and we will also take this into account in our considerations.

 

Ensuring coverage for nominated adviser obligations

We are sometimes asked by nominated advisers about team working arrangements. 

Individual working arrangements will be considered Nomad Rule 4 refers to a ‘full-time employee’. The intention underlying the reference to ‘full-time’ is to ensure that QEs give full attention to the role and thereby to address the circumstances of individuals who undertake other professional services or employment outside of the business of the firm, such as NED roles. The designation of QE is for the benefit of the firm so that it can demonstrate that its AIM company clients have real-time access to appropriately experienced staff to lead regulatory support and advice. Therefore, a firm may consider individual working arrangements such as part-time or other forms of flexible working.
Nominated advisers to ensure alternative arrangements do not impact performance of their obligations Nominated adviser firms need to demonstrate that satisfactory arrangements are in place such that the role of a nominated adviser can be fully discharged. For example, this will mean that AIM company clients have ongoing access to QEs that have full knowledge of the company and its developments to be able to advise and guide it on its AIM Rules obligations in a real-time market environment. If part-time or flexible working arrangements are agreed, then this should be arranged in a way that supports the performance of such obligations. For example, by ensuring that clients have access to more than one QE with the requisite knowledge of its business.

 

Compliance

An important element of the wider staffing of a nominated adviser firm is the compliance function. In addition to ensuring it has sufficient QEs, we encourage firms to consider what a “good” compliance function looks like, having regard to its specific structure and services. In our experience, the success of a compliance function is dependent on an engaged senior management team. When considering its compliance needs, amongst other things, a firm should consider a compliance function that:

  • Has sufficient resources to be able to provide an appropriate level of attention to the compliance needs of the nominated adviser function;
  • Is knowledgeable of the obligations set out within the Nomad Rules, as well having an appreciation of the wider UK corporate finance market;
  • Provides oversight of compliance with the firm’s corporate finance manual, including responsibility for any training in relation to the manual and for updates to it, where necessary;
  • Understands and appreciates relevant risks and how these are managed;
  • Is fully engaged with the nominated adviser team and provides a source of senior input; and
  • Has a mandate from management and the experience to provide independent challenge.

Maintenance of knowledge and experience

Nominated advisers ask us about the benefits of commissioning an external review or training in respect of their obligations to London Stock Exchange and their understanding of the AIM Rules. Whilst we appreciate that firms might consider that taking external advice could evidence a commitment to their compliance with the Nomad Rules, we question the benefits of this approach noting that the role of a nominated adviser is different to that of other professional services firms. We think it is more meaningful for a nominated adviser to engage the experience and expertise within its team when conducting a review.  

We generally find that the nominated adviser firms that share knowledge internally, have experienced staff beyond individual QEs, focus on individual and collective performance and supervision, and have good levels of management engagement along with an embedded compliance culture, are better placed to meet their nominated adviser obligations. We are always very happy to provide support and to provide firms with our experience gained from engagement across the market when they are considering or designing an internal review.

 

Staffing of Nominated Advisers

 

Date: 28 May 2019

[1] Such discretion is unlikely to be applied in relation to an entity seeking approval as a nominated adviser pursuant to Nomad Rule 2.

 

AIM designated market route

Companies whose shares have for the last 18 months been traded on certain markets may be eligible to use an AIM Designated Market route to admission. This route to market, streamlines the AIM admission process by dispensing with the requirement of producing an AIM admission document.

Today we have issued an updated AIM Designated Market Route publication. The new publication updates the list of AIM Designated Markets by introducing a new category extending to EU Regulated Markets and SME Growth Markets. The addition of the new category reflects harmonisation of investor protections and regulations in relation to securities admitted to trading on UK and European trading venues.   

Potential applicants exploring this route to AIM should discuss details with a nominated adviser.

 

AIM Designated Market Route.

AIM designated market route

 

Date: 28 May 2019

Show more

Notices

AIM Notices

AIM Notices are issued periodically, and contain information on AIM regulatory and administrative matters. They also include details of any amendments to the existing rules, together with guidance on interpreting and applying them.

If you would like to receive our AIM Notices regularly by email, please send an email to aimnotices@lseg.com.

 

Notice # Title Date
AIM57

Hard Brexit related amendments to the AIM Rule books and other Updates

29/10/2019
AD22

Stock Exchange AIM Disciplinary Notice - Public Censure and Fine - Telit Communications plc

01/07/2019
AIM56

The New Prospectus Regulation: Updates to the AIM Rulebooks

20/06/2019
AD21

Stock Exchange AIM Disciplinary Notice - Public Censure and Fine - Real Good Food plc

30/05/2019
AIM55

Brexit: Amendments to AIM Rulebooks

07/03/2019
AD20

Stock Exchange AIM Disciplinary Notice - Public Censure and Fine - Bushveld Minerals Limited

07/12/2018
AIM54

Confirmation of changes to the AIM Disciplinary Procedures and Appeals Handbook

01/10/2018
AD19

Stock Exchange AIM Disciplinary Notice - Private Censures

13/08.2018
AD18

Stock Exchange AIM Disciplinary Notice - Public Censure and Fine - MBL Group plc

13/08/2019
AIM53

Consultation on changes to the AIM Disciplinary Procedures and Appeals Handbook

24/07/2018
AIM52

Confirmation of changes to the AIM Rules for Nominated Advisers and feedback on AIM Notice 51

04/07/2018
AIM51

Consultation on proposed changes to the AIM Rules for Nominated Advisers

26/04/2019
AIM50

Confirmation of new rulebooks and feedback on AIM Notice 49

08/03/2019
n/a

Statement from AIM Regulation on FCA Final Notice - Tejoori Limited

14/12/2017
AD17

Stock Exchange AIM Disciplinary Notice

14/12/2017
AIM49

AIM Rules Review - Feedback Statement & Consultation

11/12/2017
AIM48

Application for SME Growth Market Status

05/12/2017
AIM47

LEI Requirement for AIM Companies

13/10/2017
AD16

Stock Exchange AIM Disciplinary Notice

05/10/2017
AIM46

Discussion Paper - AIM Rules Review

11/07/2017
AD15

Stock Exchange AIM Disciplinary Notice

15/12/2016
AIM45

Confirmation of new rulebooks and feedback on AIM Notice 44

14/06/2016
AIM44

Consultation on proposed changes to AIM Rules for Companies

13/04/2016
AIM43

Confirmation of new rulebooks and feedback on AIM Notice 42

22/12/2015
AIM42

Consultation on proposed changes to AIM Rules for Companies

15/10/2015
AD14

Stock Exchange AIM Disciplinary Notice

17/09/2015
AIM41

Minor changes to the AIM Rules for companies arising from the CSD Regulation

07/08/2015
n/a

Statement from AIM Regulation on Quindell plc

05/08/2015
AD13

Stock Exchange AIM Disciplinary Notice

19/03/2015
AIM40

Reminder to AIM companies and nomads after developments in Ukraine

18/09/2014
AIM39

Confirmation of rule books and feedback to AIM Notice 38

13/05/2014
AD12

Stock Exchange AIM Disciplinary Notice

08/05/2014
AIM38

Consultation on proposed changes to AIM Rules for Companies and Nominated Advisers

27/01/2014
AD11

Stock Exchange AIM Disciplinary Notice - Public Censure and Fine - Seymour Pierce Limited

21/12/2011
AIM37

Minor changes to the AIM Rules for Companies

06/06/2011
AIM36

Update on AIM Notice 35 (Disclosure of Directors’ Remuneration and Electronic Communication with Shareholders

17/02/2010

 

AIM Notices prior to 2010

Please find below AIM notices from 2002 to 2009.

Notice # Title Date
AIM35

Proposed AIM Rules for Disclosure of Directors' Remuneration and Electronic Communication with Shareholders

15/12/2009
AD10

Stock Exchange AIM Disciplinary Notice - Public Censure - Environmental Recycling Technologies plc

23/11/2009
AD9

Stock Exchange AIM Disciplinary Notice - Public Censure and Fine - Regal Petroleum plc

17/11/2009
AIM34

Update on AIM Notice 28 (Registered Organisations for AIM Securities)

18/08/2009
AD8

Stock Exchange AIM Disciplinary Notice – Public Censure and Fine – Astaire Securities plc (formerly Blue Oar Securities plc)

22/06/2009
AIM33

Confirmation of new AIM Note for Investing Companies and feedback on AIM Notice 30

01/06/2009
AIM32

Changes to Disclosure of Significant Shareholders

28/05/2009
AIM31

AIM Rule amendments relating to Rights Issue Subscription Periods

10/02/2009
AIM30

Proposed New AIM Rules for Investing Companies and other changes

18/12/2008
AD7

Stock Exchange AIM Disciplinary Notice - Public Censure - Minmet plc

04/12/2008
AD6

Stock Exchange AIM Disciplinary Notice

16/07/2008
AD5

Stock Exchange AIM Disciplinary Notice - Public Censure and Fine -Meridian Petroleum plc

19/06/2008
AD4

Stock Exchange AIM Disciplinary Notice - Public Censure - SubSea Resources plc

01/02/2008
AIM29/AD3

Update on Rule 26 (Websites) and Stock Exchange AIM Disciplinary Notice

10/01/2008
AD2

Stock Exchange AIM Disciplinary Notice

28/12/2007
AD1

Stock Exchange AIM Disciplinary Notice - Public Censure and Fine - Nabarro Wells & Co Limited

19/10/2007
AIM28

Registered organisations for AIM securities

23/04/2007
AIM27

Confirmation of new AIM Rules and feedback on AIM Notice 24

20/02/2007
AIM26

AIM Rules

12/01/2007
AIM25

Changes to the Disclosure of Significant Shareholders

30/11/2006
AIM24

AIM Rules for Nominated Advisers and Other Proposed Rule Amendments - Consultation

02/10/2006
AIM23

AIM Rules - Update on AIM Notice 22

31/08/2006
AIM22

Confirmation of Permissible Accounting Standards

22/08/2006
AIM21

Confirmation of Settlement of AIM Reg S Securities and SIS

28/07/2007
AIM20

Update on AIM Notice 18

04/07/2006

AIM19

Settlement of AIM Reg S Securities and SIS 26/05/2006
AIM18

Proposed Changes to the AIM Rules in respect of Third Party Trading Platforms

06/04/2006
AIM17

Reminder of Investing Company Rules

17/03/2006
AIM16

Guidance notes for Mining, Oil and Gas

16/03/2006
AIM15

IAS Confirmation and Consultations

21/12/2005
AIM14

AIM Rules update

03/05/2005
AIM13

AIM Rules update

18/03/2005
AIM12

AIM Rules - consultation

31/05/2005
AIM11

AIM investing companies and other rule changes consultation

31/01/2005
AIM10

October 2004 update

07/10/2004
AIM09

Consultation - AIM Rules for companies

16/06/2004
AIM08

December 2003 Update

28/11/2003
AIM07

Consultation - AIM Rules for companies

25/07/2003
AIM06

May 2003 Update

28/05/2003
AIM05

Consultation - AIM Rules for companies

18/05/2003
AIM04

AIM Disciplinary procedures and appeals handbook

17/02/2003
AIM03

Disciplinary procedures and appeals handbook consultation

11//11/2002
AIM02

August 2002 Update

19/08/2002
AIM01

(N27) Consultation - AIM Rules for companies

27/07/2002

 

Advisers

Nominated Advisers

You can access more information on AIM advisers.

Reports

AIM regulatory landscape

London Stock Exchange

London Stock Exchange is a Recognised Investment Exchange (RIE) under the UK’s Financial Services and Markets Act (FSMA).

AIM is operated and regulated by the Exchange in this capacity under Part XVIII of FSMA 2000, and as such AIM is a ‘prescribed market’ under FSMA 2000 which brings it within the market abuse provisions.

London Stock Exchange operates AIM with an overarching objective of maintaining the integrity and reputation of its growth market. The market structure and rules are designed to be relevant to growth companies and their investors. The Exchange undertakes its regulation of AIM through its AIM Regulation and Market Supervision teams. AIM Regulation is responsible for the compliance by AIM companies and Nominated Advisers with the AIM Rules and the Market Supervision team monitors the trading in AIM securities by member firms which are subject to London Stock Exchange’s trading rules.

AIM companies and nominated advisers

The AIM Rules for Companies and AIM Rules for Nominated Advisers form the basis of London Stock Exchange’s regulation of AIM companies and the nominated advisers. The AIM Rules sit within a wider landscape of regulatory and legal duties which are broadly similar to those protections provided to Main Market companies and their investors. Accordingly, the Exchange’s remit in respect of companies admitted to AIM is limited to compliance with its rule books. Actions of companies and directors that relate to wider legal duties and obligations are within the remit of the relevant competent body or regulator. The AIM Regulation team at London Stock Exchange undertakes its regulatory role by reference to the AIM rule books:

 

  • The AIM Rules for Companies which set out the obligations on a company during and on application to AIM, as well as the ongoing obligations that apply to the company whilst it is admitted to AIM. These rules include an obligation for the AIM company to disclose price sensitive information without delay and ensure that any information it notifies is correct.
     
  • The AIM Rules for Nominated Advisers which set out obligations owed to London Stock Exchange in respect of the nominated adviser’s role to consider issues of appropriateness of an AIM Company and to provide ongoing advice and guidance to AIM company clients on their AIM Rules obligations.
     
  • Additional rules apply to investing companies (Investing Company Note) and resource companies (Mining Oil and Gas Note).

 

The AIM rule books have been designed to ensure that the rules governing companies admitted to AIM are relevant to meet the needs of growing companies and their investors. They sit alongside primary legislation which is the remit of other regulators and law enforcement agencies that also provide protections to investors in respect of AIM in the same way as they do for the Main Market.

London Stock Exchange undertakes a lead role in the regulation of AIM and works closely with other regulators and law enforcement bodies to ensure that the investigation and enforcement of matters relating to AIM companies, their directors or potentially abusive trading in AIM securities are undertaken by the authority that has the most appropriate remit and investigation and enforcement powers.

The activities of the AIM Regulation team within the Exchange include: policy matters and changes to the AIM rule books; authorising and approving firms to act as nominated advisers; providing advice and guidance to nominated advisers on the interpretation of the AIM Rules; and providing oversight of the performance by the nominated advisers of their obligations owed to the Exchange pursuant to the AIM rules.

Furthermore, the AIM Regulation team undertakes investigations and considers disciplinary action in respect of potential breaches of the AIM rule books by AIM companies and/or nominated advisers. AIM Regulation has a variety of private and public sanctions it can utilise in respect of the enforcement of its rules. All public censures are published and London Stock Exchange will also publish private censures (anonymising the relevant company/nominated adviser) for the purpose of educating the market in circumstances where the nature of the breach is not sufficient to warrant a public censure or is unlikely to reoccur. This range of sanctions enables London Stock Exchange to apply the most appropriate sanction taking into account all the circumstances and ensuring that it achieves its objectives of providing education to the market; ensuring change in future behaviour; and deterring future breaches.

Trading of AIM securities on London Stock Exchange

The Market Supervision team at London Stock Exchange monitors the trading in AIM securities that is undertaken on the Exchange by member firms to ensure trading is orderly, efficient and in compliance with the London Stock Exchange’s trading rules. It also refers to the FCA potential cases of market abuse that it may identify.

London Stock Exchange’s AIM Regulation and Market Supervision teams work closely with and liaise on relevant market issues including ensuring that real time issues of disclosure are addressed by AIM companies on a timely basis and in accordance with the AIM Rules.

The suspension of AIM securities from trading is part of the Exchange’s real-time operation of AIM to maintain an orderly market, including where a company has not been able to make appropriate disclosure promptly. If a company is not able to comply with the AIM rules for a prolonged period its admission may be cancelled.

Company advisers

Nominated advisers

A key feature of AIM is the nominated adviser role. Nominated advisers are firms that provide corporate finance advice with particular expertise on AIM and are approved by the Exchange to act for companies that have, or wish to have, their securities admitted to trading on AIM. They will advise and guide the company on its ongoing obligations under the Exchange’s AIM rule books. A company admitted to AIM is required to have a nominated adviser at all times whilst it has securities admitted to trading.

It is the nominated adviser who will assess whether a company is appropriate for AIM, having considered all relevant matters set out in the AIM Rules. The nominated adviser will also advise on the compliance of the company’s Admission Document with the relevant rules. The nominated adviser makes a declaration to the Exchange in relation to this. The nominated adviser is also required to understand the business of the company so that it is well placed to provide ongoing support to the company in respect of its compliance with the AIM Rules, for example, in relation to matters such as ongoing disclosure. Whilst this support is important for AIM companies given their size and nature, it should be noted that the primary obligation for compliance with the AIM Rules for Companies remains at all times with the AIM company.

The Nominated Adviser Rules set out obligations owed by nominated advisers solely to the Exchange. These rules do not deal with the services that a nominated adviser may provide directly to its clients, for example, through its contract with an AIM company. Any such services between the nominated adviser and the AIM company will normally be set out in a private agreement. It is likely that a nominated adviser firm might undertake other roles for a client company, e.g. sales or broking. Whilst these are not regulated by the Exchange, the AIM Rules for Nominated Advisers contain provisions governing independence and conflicts of interest.

Lawyers

Lawyers will be involved in the admission of a company to AIM, including performing legal due diligence on the business and advising and guiding both the company and the nominated adviser on the legal aspects of the admission process. As with any company or business, AIM companies may choose to engage lawyers to advise them on an on-going basis in relation to various discrete matters including commercial contracts, acquisitions, corporate activity and compliance with legislation. However, an AIM company’s nominated adviser remains the company’s principal adviser in relation to its compliance with the AIM Rules.

Accountants and auditors

A firm of accountants, as reporting accountants, will be required to perform financial due diligence on a company as part of its proposed admission to AIM.

Furthermore, a company will have filing obligations under its Companies Act obligations as well as under the AIM Rules which require the company to notify a half-yearly report within three months of the period end and to publish an annual report and audited accounts for each financial year within 6 months of the year end. Therefore, every company must engage an auditor to audit its accounts. The UK’s Financial Reporting Council provides independent oversight over public company accounts and the regulation of auditors. In addition, an AIM company may also engage accountants to assist it in relation to ongoing financial reporting or in relation to discrete matters, such as tax matters, on an ad-hoc or regular basis.

Registrars

All companies will need to maintain a share register and this function is often outsourced by publicly traded companies, including AIM companies, to a professional registrar. The primary role of the registrar is to maintain the company’s share register and ensure that it is up to date. The registrar may also provide additional services including company secretarial services and/or facilitate formal regulatory communications with shareholders (e.g. notices of general meetings etc.).

The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA)

As the leading financial services regulator in the UK, the FCA has three objectives, set out in FSMA (as amended by the Financial Services Act 2012): Protect consumers, to secure an appropriate degree of protection for consumers; Protect financial markets, to protect and enhance the integrity of the UK financial system; and to Promote competition, to promote effective competition in the interests of consumers. The FCA regulates London Stock Exchange, as a Recognised Investment Exchange. From an AIM company perspective, it has powers to investigate disclosures made by an AIM company where they may be false or misleading statements and which (intentionally or recklessly) induce investors to trade or refrain from trading in the company's securities. The FCA is also the competent authority in respect of the compliance with the relevant aspects of the FCA’s Disclosure and Transparency Rules which apply to UK companies on AIM (i.e. vote holder and issuer notification rules under DTR 5).

From a secondary market perspective (i.e. in respect of the trading of shares in the secondary market), the FCA has both civil and criminal powers available to it to identify and prevent market abuse and will also work with other law enforcement agencies in combatting this. Furthermore, given the FCA’s responsibility for the conduct of retail and wholesale financial services firms in relation to consumers, the manner in which these firms are expected to conduct business when communicating with clients is primarily set out in the FCA’s Conduct of Business sourcebook.

For more information, refer to: http://www.fca.org.uk/about/what

The Takeover Panel (the "Panel")

The Panel is an independent body in the UK whose main functions are to issue and administer the City Code on Takeovers and Mergers (the "Code") and to supervise and regulate takeovers and other matters to which the Code applies. Its central objective is to ensure fair treatment for all shareholders in takeover bids.

The Code applies to all companies admitted to trading on AIM which are incorporated in the UK, the Channel Islands and the Isle of Man.

For more information, refer to: http://www.thetakeoverpanel.org.uk/

Show more

FAQs

FAQs

You can access frequently asked questions on AIM.