Fintech Market Overview

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Payment services in Brazil


What concerns payment services, they are regulated by the Brazilian payment system (SPB). This authority was established by Law No. 10,214/2001 and is supervised by BACEN, includes the following services and structures to be legalized by relevant authorities and is entitled to:

  • clear credit notes;
  • clear and settle digital debit and credit orders;
  • transfer funds and other financial assets;
  • clear and settle securities transactions; and
  • clear and settle commodities and future transactions. 1

As for Resolution No. 150/2021, BACEN, it regulates rendering of payment services under instructions imposed by the SPB, which provide benchmarks and formats to be observed by the above-mentioned service providers. Payment bodies, in their turn, are managed primarily by BACEN Resolutions Nos. 80/2021 and 81/2021.1

The overall rapid technological transformation that is underway at present pushed BACEN to introduce Resolution No. 1/2020 that became eligible on September, the 1st, 2020. This document put into practice PIX, that is a cutting-edge instant payment scheme intended for cutting down on costs related to transfer transactions. It constitutes the e-transfer of funds between various legal entities and natural persons with a view to effect processes of sending and receipt of payment in an online mode, 24/7. At present, such instant payment could be effected between the following actors: two natural persons, a natural person and a legal entity, two legal entities. The scheme is open for state authorities, e.g., for payment of taxes from individuals or corporations, as well as social bonuses and grants paid by the authorities to individuals or legal entities. PIX has been developed to apply such up-to-date and attainable technics as using QR codes via smartphones to collect taxes and service charges.1

Bulletin No. 32,927 as of 21 December, 2018 declared the Brazil government’s intention to launch an instant payment system in the country, and the mentioned regulation has become a remarkable step forward towards this goal. The Bulletin accepts instant payments as valid and legal transactions and is developed to spur and promote improvement of Brazil’s legislation regulating its payment system. This approach provides wide opportunities for establishing of fintech businesses aimed at introducing cutting-edge solution in the segment of e-payments to facilitate them. BACEN has explained that, within the frameworks of such regulations, fintech businesses are entitled to act as payment bodies, provide customers with payment accounts, or as payment initiation service providers. Apart from this, the legislation allows them to render such services as insurance, credit, investments and tax payments that promotes most efficient and competitive modern schemes to cut down on social costs that stem from the necessity to use documents in hard copies.2

No regulations that hold the institutions liable to provide access to data related to a customer or a product to any third party are in force at present. They are granted with rights to share the data to the extent that is necessary to facilitate, secure and speed up payments. However, the process is controlled as per the Brazilian Federal Constitution (and special enactments such as Supplementary Law No. 105/01) because the Brazilian legislation basically stands for confidentiality of banking secrets. The procedure of disclosure of customers’ personal data is protected by LGPD, and the need for disclosure shall be legally substantiated and might include, for instance, such justifications as customers’ permission, secure of credits and legally grounded inquiry from banks and/or other financial bodies.1

Marketplaces are digital facilities aimed at connecting buyers and sellers of goods or services. They ensure such an infrastructure that allows to carry out transactions in an easier manner. This convenient tool make it possible to receive full amount of funds to be paid for a good or service and then, when the obligations are fulfilled, transfer the money to the seller/provider taking into account the marketplace’s charge. Thus, they might be identified as sub-accreditors (also known as sub-acquirers) or payment facilitators and generally have partnership relations with sellers.1

BACEN Resolution No. 150/2021 reveals the business role of sub-accreditors and the ways they deal with the bodies that arrange payments. Moreover, it identifies objective parameters that sub-accreditors as a part of a centralized settlement structure should meet. It is also stipulated by Circular Letter No. 3,872/2018. Resolution No. 150/2021 that lay down a structural division of sub-accreditors in order to make it easier for a recipient to receive a payment. In this case, the recipient, being a participant of a unified payment settlement grid, does not have to act as a creditor in every single transaction; nonetheless, a sub-accreditor is reliably linked with other participants – the end users of the system.1

The Resolution sets out that the intermediation of payments effected within the sub-accreditor format, with possible presence of marketplaces in the scheme, shall comply with the payment settlement infrastructure legislation basis.1

It is mandatory for sub-accreditors to act as a part of the unified settlement system. This system integrates the centralization of settlement of transactions effected by the payment settlements that are unified within the SPB in a single neutral clearing and settlement service provider, identified by the institutions legalizing those payment settlements. Nowadays, it is the Interbank Payment Chamber that is acting as the clearing and settlement service provider.1

It is obligatory that marketplaces are parts of the unified settlement structure, no matter with what amounts of the transactions they are dealing with, in case the recipient of funds related to transactions is regulated by the unified centralized settlement structure rules. On the other hand, that is upon marketplaces whether take part in this structure or not in case the marketplace is a payment agent that transfers funds to end users that obtain funds related to transaction, and the total amount of transactions for the last year is 500 mln. Reals or less.1

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Fintech in Brazil

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Brazil Fintech Lawyers

Kristina Berkes

Kristina Berkes

Participation as a lawyer at investment venture funds, leading venture M&A deals in IT, supporting iGaming and business assets

  1. https://thelawreviews.co.uk/title/the-financial-technology-law-review/brazil
  2. http://www.bcb.gov.br/en/legacy?url=https:%2F%2Fwww.bcb.gov.br%2FPom%2FSpb%2FIng%2Finstantpayments.asp%3Fidpai%3DPAYMENTSYSTEM