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SEC Settles With Media Companies for $539M Over Alleged Illegal Digital-Asset, Stock Offerings

The SEC estimated thousands of investors purchased GTV stock and digital assets dubbed G-Coins or G-Dollars.

Sep 13, 2021 at 3:07 p.m. UTC
Updated Sep 13, 2021 at 7:38 p.m. UTC

The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) agreed to a $539 million settlement with GTV Media, parent company Saraca Media and Voice of Guo Media after charging them with conducting illegal digital-asset and stock offerings.

  • The SEC said the three companies have been charged for an illegal, unregistered offering of GTV common stock as well as digital securities called G-Coins or G-Dollars.
  • New York-based GTV Media, Saraca Media and Phoenix-based Voice of Guo Media solicited thousands of individuals to invest in the GTV stock offering in April-June 2020, the SEC said.
  • “Thousands of investors purchased GTV stock, G-Coins and G-Dollars based on the respondents’ solicitation of the general public with limited disclosures,” said Richard Best, director of the SEC’s New York regional office.
  • The companies neither admit nor deny the findings, the SEC said. They also agreed to a cease-and-desist order.
  • New York Attorney General Letitia James also secured an agreement with GTV Media and Saraca Media Group in which the two firms agreed to pay $479.9 million to settle claims they failed to register in New York as securities dealers and/or commodities broker-dealers.
  • GTV Media and Saraca will receive credit towards the $479.9 million for payments they make in their settlement with the SEC, with the New York settlement money being placed in a fund to compensate harmed investors.

UPDATE (Sept. 13, 19:38 UTC): Updated with information about the settlement with the New York Attorney General in the fifth and sixth bullet points.

DISCLOSURE

The leader in news and information on cryptocurrency, digital assets and the future of money, CoinDesk is a media outlet that strives for the highest journalistic standards and abides by a strict set of editorial policies. CoinDesk is an independent operating subsidiary of Digital Currency Group, which invests in cryptocurrencies and blockchain startups.

Tanzeel Akhtar is a CoinDesk news reporter based in Europe.

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