The United States Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has reached a settlement with Block.one to pay $24 million in penalties for conducting an unregistered initial coin offering (ICO).
On Sept. 30, the SEC announced in a press release that it has settled the charges against the firm behind the EOS network and corresponding token in the form of a civil monetary penalty. Block.one settled the charges without admitting or denying the findings.
According to the press release, Block.one’s ICO of 900 million tokens “began shortly before the SEC released the DAO Report of Investigation and continued for nearly a year after the report’s publication.”
Block.one raised the equivalent of billions of dollars but failed to register its ICO as a securities offering in agreement with the U.S. federal securities laws, “nor did it qualify for or seek an exemption from the registration requirements,” the SEC states. Co-director of the SEC’s Division of Enforcement Stephanie Avakian said:
“A number of U.S. investors participated in Block.one’s ICO. Companies that offer or sell securities to U.S. investors must comply with the securities laws, irrespective of the industry they operate in or the labels they place on the investment products they offer.”
Steven Peikin, co-director of the SEC’s Division of Enforcement added that Block.one did not provide ICO investors with the needed information, saying:
“The SEC remains committed to bringing enforcement cases when investors are deprived of material information they need to make informed investment decisions.”
The $24 million fine is not expected to make a significant dent, as it only represents a small portion of the $4 billion initial raise.
Block.one opens headquarters in Washington DC
Cointelegraph reported recently that Block.one opened its fourth global site located in the Washington, D.C. metropolitan region. The office is said to create 170 high-skilled jobs over a period of three years. Block.one CEO Brendan Blumer said at the time:
“Its proximity to the nation’s capital positions us close to the policy innovation around digital assets and distributed ledger technology in the U.S. This expansion opens up important new avenues of talent expansions for us at a time when there is rapidly increasing demand for blockchain-based technologies.”