Written By Osie Ukwuoma, Will Osler, Kris Hanc, Angela Blake and Geordie Macdonald
The Canadian Securities Administrators' (CSA) modernized System for Electronic Document Analysis and Retrieval (SEDAR) will soon be launched as SEDAR+. Two important dates are fast approaching—the deadline for pre-launch onboarding submissions on April 14, 2023, and the SEDAR+ go-live date on June 13, 2023.
What Is SEDAR+?
SEDAR+ is the new, modernized, web-based technology platform that is expected to be used by capital market participants to file, disclose and search for issuer information in Canada’s capital markets. The first phase of the SEDAR+ rollout will consolidate and replace SEDAR, the Cease Trade Order (CTO) database, the Disciplined List (DL) database, and certain filings made in paper or in the British Columbia Securities Commission’s eServices system and the Ontario Securities Commission’s electronic filing portal.
With SEDAR+, the CSA aims for capital market participants to experience an improved user-friendly interface that will continuously advance with regular updates to improve the user experience and meet changing market needs.
Why Are the Existing Systems Being Replaced?
The existing national systems, being SEDAR, the CTO database, the DL database, the System for Electronic Disclosure by Insiders (SEDI), the National Registration Database (NRD), and the National Registration Search (NRS), are unable to respond to the evolving needs of capital market participants. Additionally, the existing systems are not integrated and users are required to connect the various data from each system when performing Canadian securities due diligence. SEDAR+ is intended to be a seamless platform that reduces the time and cost of regulatory compliance.
What Is the Onboarding Timeline and Process?
All SEDAR users are required to complete an onboarding process in order to gain access to SEDAR+ and make their filings once the new platform launches. The onboarding process requires every issuer, filer and filing agent to submit one or more of the following by April 14, 2023:
- Electronic Filer Agreement (EFA): All organizations that will file on SEDAR+ must complete the EFA in order to set up a profile and submit filings.
- Filing Agent Authorization Form (FAAF): Issuers and investment fund managers that use filing agents must complete the FAAF in order to grant the filing agent permission to complete SEDAR+ filings on the issuer/investment fund manager’s behalf.
- Supplementary Information: New account and issuer profile supplementary information must be provided before each organization account can be created and filing access granted.
Filing organizations that miss the onboarding deadline of April 14, 2023 will need to register for an account on the new SEDAR+ system following the June 13, 2023 launch. The post-launch registration process will involve additional steps and a third-party review process. Immediate access will not be available for filing organizations that miss the deadline. Therefore, it is highly recommended that all filing organizations complete the pre-launch onboarding process in order to ensure a seamless transition to SEDAR+.
What Should Market Participants Expect Going Forward?
The June 13, 2023 launch is the first phase of a three-phase rollout. The second phase will include the SEDI system and the third phase will include the NRD and NRS systems. Presently, there is no set launch date for the second and third phases.
The CSA's SEDAR+ Information Site contains additional information regarding SEDAR+ and its features, a Learning Centre, further information on transitioning to the new platform, a series of demo videos, and FAQs.
If you have questions or require further information regarding SEDAR+, please contact the authors or a member of the Bennett Jones Capital Markets group.
Please note that this publication presents an overview of notable legal trends and related updates. It is intended for informational purposes and not as a replacement for detailed legal advice. If you need guidance tailored to your specific circumstances, please contact one of the authors to explore how we can help you navigate your legal needs.
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