BaFin

Topic Fintechs Company start-ups and fintech companies

There is still no clear definition of the concept of a fintech company. Combining the words “financial services” and “technology”, fintech companies are commonly understood to be young undertakings that provide specialised and in particular customer-oriented financial services using technology-based systems.

Business models

Fintech business models are diverse and may – depending on their structure – require authorisation by the Federal Financial Supervisory Authority (Bundesanstalt für Finanzdienstleistungsaufsicht - BaFin). You can find an overview of the business models that are currently the most common, as well as regulatory information, on the following subpages:

Authorisation requirement

The description of the different business models is merely indicative in nature and does not constitute a final legal assessment by BaFin. Authoritative evaluations can only be made based on the individual circumstances pertaining to a specific case. To find out if the authorisation requirement applies to you, please fill out our contact form (only available in german).

The provision of payment services, financial services, and conducting of banking or insurance business without authorisation is a criminal offence.

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Publications on this topic

Fin­tech - EBA and BCBS start con­sul­ta­tions

The European Banking Authority (EBA) published a discussion paper on its approach to financial technology (fintech) in early August. In the paper, the EBA sets out the results of a mapping exercise on the European fintech sector, which it conducted among the national competent authorities in spring. Based on the results of the exercise, the EBA identified a number of issues for which it considers …

In­surTech: In­no­va­tive new com­pa­nies cre­ate a stir in the in­sur­ance in­dus­try

The insurance industry's core processes have been changing steadily over the past few decades. From consulting, sales and distribution, and underwriting to portfolio management or claims settlement, little by little digitalisation has come to affect every major part of the industry. Today, the speed and intensity with which data can be analysed allows for a more risk-based setting of tariffs and …

Crowd­in­vest­ing: The prospec­tus re­quire­ment ex­emp­tion one year on – an overview

10 July 2016 marked the one-year anniversary of the coming into force of the Retail Investor Protection Act (Kleinanlegerschutzgesetz) and, with it, the inclusion of some new exemptions from the prospectus requirement in the German Capital Investment Act (Vermögensanlagegesetz - VermAnlG). One of these new rules is contained within section 2a of the VermAnlG, which exempts certain public offers of …

Dis­tribut­ed Ledger: The tech­nol­o­gy be­hind vir­tu­al cur­ren­cies: the ex­am­ple of blockchain

Virtual currencies have attracted much public attention in recent years. Distributed ledger technology (DLT) is also receiving more attention as the technological basis for virtual currencies.

Fin­Techs: Young IT com­pa­nies on the fi­nan­cial mar­ket

An internal BaFin project group started work on the topic of FinTechs at the end of November, focusing on the new business models of young financial services providers. Drawing on expertise from the areas of banking, insurance and securities supervision, the objective of the project group is to observe the latest developments in the FinTech market, and to review whether the Federal Financial …

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