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STM and GFSC avoid courtroom showdown

STM Group has agreed a “collaborative way forward” with the Gibraltar Financial Services Commission in respect of issues relating to several of its businesses regulated here, thus avoiding a court hearing scheduled for next Monday.

STM had filed an appeal of the GFSC’s decision to appoint inspectors but in light of the latest development, that hearing will no longer go ahead.

In a statement to the London stock exchange, STM said a third-party review would be carried out by Deloitte on “certain aspects” of the various businesses.

The review will be undertaken by Deloitte at STM’s expense and is expected to be finalised by March 31, including recommendations if appropriate.

Once completed, Deloitte’s report will be provided jointly to the GFSC and STM.

“The agreed scope remains unchanged and will cover, inter alia, the effectiveness and oversight of the companies' internal compliance function which is a central service for all the Gibraltar subsidiaries, corporate governance and controls, and an assessment of any potential conflicts of interest arising across the business,” STM said in the statement.

“In addition, the review will also cover certain specific areas in relation to the pensions and life assurance business relating to take-on and monitoring procedures for intermediaries, clients and investments advised by intermediaries.”

Alan Kentish, CEO of STM Group, said the group looked forward to working with Deloitte and the GFSC.

“It is pleasing that the Gibraltar subsidiaries have been able to come to a workable solution with the Gibraltar regulator, rather than pursuing their case through the courts which, at the end of the day, is in neither party's interest,” he said.

In the statement to the stock exchange, STM said that despite costs incurred to date and expected costs to be incurred in relation to this matter, its trading subsidiaries had not experienced any adverse effects to trading as a result.

The group remains confident of meeting its management's previous expectations for the financial year ended December 31, 2017, and the financial year ending December 31, 2018.

The Company expects to announce a trading statement in relation to the 12-month period ended 31 December 31, 2017, on January 24.

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