The Difference Between FCA Authorisation and Being an AR

Posted on: 29 November 2021

Written by: Martin Lovick

Choosing the right route for your business

In the UK, nearly all financial service activities must be authorised by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA). There are two main routes that firms can take in order to achieve authorisation, they can get directly authorised, or, they can seek to become an Appointed Representative (AR). An AR is a firm or person who runs a limited number of regulated activities and acts as an agent for a firm directly authorised by the FCA. This firm is known as the AR's Principal. There are various differences between being directly authorised and acting as an AR and some firms will find they are more suited to one route rather than the other. 

This factsheet comments on the differences between these two routes and explains the key areas for consideration when deciding whether to seek full authorisation or become an AR.

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If you are looking to get authorised or become an AR and are still unsure as to which option is right for you, we would be happy to support you. Submit an enquiry today to speak with one of our expert consultants.

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Want to understand more about the services we offer? Visit our Appointed Representatives and Authorisation webpages to see how we could support you. 


Martin Web

Martin Lovick

Martin is Director of Capital Markets.

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