Initial Proposed Restrictions on Crypto Influencer Marketing
In March, a draft bill proposed in France posed a significant threat to influencer marketing for cryptocurrency companies. The proposed legislation would have allowed only licensed crypto firms to engage in influencer marketing. However, despite the requirement for crypto companies to register with the regulator, none are currently licensed in France.
Unanimous Agreement on Revised Bill
On May 25, the French Senate reached a unanimous agreement on a revised bill, intended to regulate influencer promotions across various industries. This toned-down version only requires crypto firms to register with the Financial Markets Authority (AMF), according to a statement from French lawmakers Arthur Delaporte and Stéphane Vojetta.
Implications of the Revised Bill
There are currently around 60 crypto firms registered with the AMF, none of which have opted for the licensing process. Under the revised bill, “only financial products and cryptocurrencies from players registered with the AMF may be promoted.” Moreover, the AMF and the consumer affairs regulator are expected to have their control capacities bolstered.
Penalties and Further Restrictions
Penalties for non-compliance with these regulations include up to two years of imprisonment and a 300,000 euro ($322,000) fine. Additionally, the influencer could face a possible ban on their activities. Beyond crypto, influencers’ promotion of certain other products, such as nicotine products and gambling to those under 18, is also being restricted.
Recent Amendment to Allow Influencer Marketing
Earlier in May, the Senate’s Committee on Economic Affairs approved an amendment allowing crypto firms registered with the AMF to engage in influencer marketing. This move seems to have set the stage for the recent relaxation of the proposed bill’s restrictions.
A Balanced Approach Towards Influencer Marketing
This consensus among French lawmakers indicates a shift in the country’s approach towards regulating influencer marketing in the crypto space. It represents a balanced stance, neither completely prohibiting crypto firms from influencer marketing nor leaving it wholly unregulated. While it still imposes penalties for non-compliance, the revised bill allows registered firms to continue their marketing efforts, providing an opportunity for growth and expansion in the crypto industry.
With the agreement on this revised bill, France has shown a commitment to developing a robust and responsible crypto ecosystem, where influencers play a crucial role in promoting registered financial products and cryptocurrencies. However, the exact impact of these changes will only become clear once the bill’s wording is published and its implementations begin. This development is undoubtedly one to watch for both cryptocurrency firms and influencers operating in France.