Only registered investment advisers can provide investment advice in India. If you want to become a registered investment adviser, you need to meet certain eligibility criteria, qualification and certification requirements, and net worth requirements. This article will walk you through the steps involved in becoming a registered investment advisor in India.
A SEBI Registered Investment Adviser is a professional authorized and registered with SEBI to provide financial advisory services to clients. A SEBI Registered Investment Adviser must comply with the code of conduct, disclosure norms, and minimum qualifications and experience requirements set by SEBI.
The regulations define an investment adviser as someone who advises about investing in securities or provides research analysis.
2. Eligibility Criteria [Regulation 6]
For the purpose of grant of certificate, the Board shall take into account all matters which are relevant to the grant of certificate of registration and in particular the following, namely –
a. Applicant can be an individual or non-individual (Body Corporate i.e., Company or LLP),
b. The applicant and all the individuals including Principal Officer if any, associated with investment advice shall be appropriately qualified and certified as per Regulation 7,
c. Applicant shall have the net worth of at least [Regulation 8]:
|Sr. No.||Particulars||Amount in INR|
|1||Non-Individual investment adviser||50 lakhs|
|2||Individual investment adviser||5 lakhs|
d. The applicant, its partners, principal officer and person associated with investment advice shall be fit and proper as per Schedule II of the SEBI (Intermediaries) Regulations, 2008,
e. The applicant shall have necessary infrastructure,
f. In case a Bank or NBFC proposes to undertake investment advisory services, it shall obtain approval from RBI and the application should be made through a subsidiary or separately identifiable department or division,
g. In case an entity incorporated outside India undertakes to provide investment advisory services, it has to set-up a subsidiary in India and such subsidiary shall make the application for registration,
h. In case a foreign citizen proposes to undertake investment advisory services, the applicant shall set-up an office in India and shall undertake investment advisory services through such office.
3. Qualification and Certification Requirements [Regulation 7]
An individual investment adviser or a principal officer of a non-individual investment adviser shall have the following minimum qualification at all times-
a. Qualification Requirement [Regulation 7 (1) (a)]
A professional qualification or post-graduate degree or post graduate diploma (minimum two years in duration) in finance, accountancy, business management, commerce, economics, capital market, banking, insurance or actuarial science from a university or an institution recognized by the Central Government or any State Government or a recognised foreign university or institution or association or a professional qualification by completing a Post Graduate Program in the Securities Market (Investment Advisory) from NISM of a duration not less than one year or a professional qualification by obtaining a CFA Charter from the CFA Institute. and
b. Experience Requirement [Regulation 7 (1) (b)]
An experience of at least five years in activities relating to advice in financial products or securities or fund or asset or portfolio management.
c. Requirement for Associated Persons [Regulation 7 (1) (c)]
Persons associated with investment advice shall meet the following minimum qualifications, at all times –
(i) a professional qualification as provided in Regulation 7 (1) (a) and
(ii) an experience of at least 2 years in activities relating to advice in financial products or securities or fund or asset or portfolio management.
d. Certification Requirement [Regulation 7 (2)]
An individual investment adviser or principal officer of a non-individual investment adviser, registered under these regulations and persons associated with investment advice shall have, at all times a certification on financial planning or fund or asset or portfolio management or investment advisory services
(i) from NISM or
(ii) from any other organization or institution including Financial Planning Standards Board of India or any recognized stock exchange in India provided such certification is accredited by NISM
Provided that fresh certification must be obtained before expiry of the validity of the existing certification to ensure continuity in compliance with certification requirements:
Provided further that fresh certification before expiry of the validity of the existing certification shall not be obtained through a CPE program.
4. Validity of the Registration Certificate [Regulation 10]
The certificate of registration granted shall be valid till it is suspended or cancelled by the Board.
5. Terms and Conditions of the Certificate [Regulation 13]
The certificate granted under Regulation 9 shall, inter alia, be subject to the following conditions-
a. The investment adviser shall abide by the provisions of the Act and these regulations,
b. The investment adviser shall forthwith inform the Board in writing, if any information or particulars previously submitted to the Board are found to be false or misleading in any material particular or if there is any material change in the information already submitted,
c. The investment adviser not being individual, shall include the words ‘investment adviser’ in its name,
d. Individual registered as investment adviser shall use the term ‘investment adviser’ in all their correspondence with their clients,
e. Individual registered as investment advisers whose number of clients exceeds 150 in total, shall apply for registration as non-individual investment adviser within such time as may specified by the Board
6. Fees Structure [Second Schedule]
SEBI fee structure
|Sr. No.||Particulars||Fee in INR|
|1||Individuals and firms||2,000|
|2||Body Corporates i.e., Companies and LLPs||10,000|
|1||Individuals and firms||3,000|
|2||Body Corporates i.e., Companies and LLPs||15,000|
*Every applicant shall pay non-refundable application fees along with the application for grant of certificate of registration.
**Every applicant shall pay registration fee at the time of grant of certificate by the Board
An investment adviser who has been granted a certificate of registration, shall pay fee as mentioned below every 5 years, from the date of registration to keep its registration active.
BASL Membership fee structure:
|Sr. No.||Particulars||Amount in INR|
|New Membership fee|
|1.||Individuals and firms||6,000|
|2.||Body Corporates i.e., Companies and LLPs||3,00,000|
|Renewal Membership fee|
|1.||Individuals and firms||5,400|
|2.||Body Corporates i.e., Companies and LLPs||2,97,000|
7. BASL Membership Requirement
Any person desirous of obtaining a certificate of registration as an IA is required to first obtain membership of BASL and then make an application for grant of certificate of registration in the format of Form A as specified in the First Schedule to the IA Regulations along with necessary supporting documents.
8. Stepwise procedure for making application for registration
Step 1: Comply with the eligibility criteria, qualification and certification requirements and net worth criteria.
Step 2: Prepare the application and necessary documents
Step 3: Submit application to BASL for in-principal approval
Step 4: Submit application to SEBI
Step 5: Communication by SEBI for further requirements
Step 6: Submit the additional documents/ information
Step 7: Communication by SEBI for approval of application
Step 8: Pay registration fees
Step 9: Issue of certificate by SEBI and BASL
Hope this article gives you clarity on the requirements for registration as an Investment Adviser. In case you have any queries or are looking for any professional assistance to make an application, you may write to me at email@example.com.