DFSA fines firm $105,000 for unauthorised activity

By Eudore R. Chand

DUBAI 26 February 2020: The Dubai Financial Services Authority (DFSA) announced that it has fined Enness Limited (Enness DIFC), a DIFC Representative Office.

The DFSA fined Enness DIFC US$105,000 (approximately  Dh386,000) for engaging in unauthorised activity outside the scope of its Representative Office DFSA Licence.

As a Representative Office, Enness DIFC is only permitted to carry out a narrow set of activities in the DIFC relating to the marketing of mortgage services offered by its head office based in the United Kingdom.

The DFSA’s investigation found that between November 2017 and January 2019, Enness DIFC arranged mortgages for its clients, and provided mortgage advice for its clients. Enness DIFC was not authorised to engage in such activity, and in doing so acted outside the scope of its Representative Office Licence, in breach of the DFSA’s laws.

Enness DIFC fully cooperated with the DFSA’s investigation and has sought to obtain an appropriate DFSA Licence authorising it to carry on the wider Financial Service of Arranging Credit and Advising on Credit.

Furthermore, Enness DIFC also agreed to settle the DFSA’s action at an early stage of the investigation and, therefore, qualified for a discount under the DFSA’s policy for early settlement. Were it not for the settlement discount, the DFSA would have imposed a fine of $150,000 (approximately $551,000) on Enness DIFC.

Bryan Stirewalt, Chief Executive of the DFSA, said: “This action demonstrates that the DFSA takes the failure by Representative Offices to act within the scope of their Licenses seriously. We expect that all Representative Offices in the DIFC understand what they are authorised to do and have controls in place that ensure they only engage in authorised activities. ”