ASIC has cancelled the financial services licence for Sydney-based financial services provider Australian Mutual that operated several managed investment schemes
Australian Mutual was a responsible entity who operated several managed investment schemes and has held an AFS license since 2006.
In 28 June, Peter Paul of BRI Ferrier was appointed voluntary administrator of Australian Mutual, which under the Corporations Act gives ASIC the power to suspend or cancel an AFS licence.
The terms of the cancellation allow Australian Mutual to provide financial services which are reasonably necessary for or incidental to the winding up of Australian Pink Diamond Fund, Grange Capital Management Growth Plus Fund and the Accelerated Trend Hedge Fund.
‘A key priority for ASIC is ensuring that responsible entities take their duty to act in the best interest of investors seriously. This duty of loyalty has been described as the ‘most fundamental’ rule of trust law. The community expects responsible entities to fully comply with the best interest duty and ASIC will take legal action to enforce this,’ ASIC Commissioner Danielle Press said.
Following an April 2019 ASIC investigation, the commission banned Australian Mutual’s joint executive officers and directors Jeffrey Worboys and Matthew Barnett from providing financial services for six years.
ASIC found that Mr Worboys and Mr Barnett did not exercise the degree of care and diligence required and failed to act in the best interests of the members of the Courtenary House Capital Investment Fund operated by Australian Mutual.
This included a failure to ensure that the persons responsible for trading funds had the requisite qualifications and experience.
Courtenay House Capital Trading Group and Courtenay House are involved in a separate investigation by ASIC and have been appointed liquidators from Grant Thornton by the Supreme Court.
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