The Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) updated guidance (Information Sheet 225, also INFO 225) on initial coin offerings (ICOs) and crypto-assets. INFO 225 provides information on how the Corporations Act 2001 and the ASIC Act 2001 may apply to businesses that are considering raising funds through an ICO and to businesses involved with crypto-assets.
ASIC released new information to help businesses involved with ICOs and crypto-assets to consider their legal obligations and satisfy themselves they are operating lawfully. INFO 225 covers crypto-assets such as cryptocurrency, tokens, or stable coins and it:
- Provides a non-exhaustive list of items to consider when offering an ICO
- Discusses when laws prohibiting misleading or deceptive conduct, or the Corporations Act, would apply to an ICO or a crypto-asset
- Types of ICO offers made available to consumers in Australia and whether the Corporations Act might apply to them
- Provides guidance about platforms that enable trading of crypto-assets
- Provides details regarding financial products that reference crypto-assets
In January 2019, Treasury noted in its issues paper on ICOs that many ICOs have turned out to be scams. Businesses seeking to operate lawfully and legitimately need to distinguish themselves from possible scams and carefully consider the information in INFO 225.
Keywords: Asia Pacific, Australia, Securities, INFO 225, Initial Coin Offerings, Crypto-Assets, ASIC
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