Swiss Financial Regulator Launches Enforcement Proceedings Against envion AG

Although Switzerland has become a hotbed for initial coin offerings, the country’s financial regulator (FINMA) hasn’t taken kindly to violations of banking laws. Envion AG, which raised more than $100 million from investors, is the second major ICO that has stirred up controversy in Switzerland.

  • On July 26, 2018, FINMA – the Swiss Financial Market Supervisory Authority – announced that it has started “enforcement proceedings” against envion AG, a company that may have violated banking laws during its initial coin offering (ICO) for EVN tokens. The Swiss regulator explained its enforcement action:

    “Investigations carried out by FINMA to date indicate that, in the context of its ICO, envion AG accepted funds amounting to approximately one hundred million francs from more than 30,000 investors in return for issuing EVN tokens in a bond-like form.”

    FINMA said it will “make no further comment on the proceedings until they are concluded.”

    Note: At the time of writing, 1 Swiss Franc equals 1.00555 USD (XE Corporation).

    Like Tezos (which also set up shop in Switzerland), envion has become a massive nuisance for investors as the company’s founders and executives have battled for control over funds. In May, The New York Times shed light on the troubled company. Since that exposé, EVN tokens have traded for roughly $0.12 to $0.13 per token, according to Live Coin Watch. This represents an almost 90 percent decline from the token’s all-time high of $1.19, which occurred in February 2018. At present, EVN still claims a $14.2 million market cap, though the 24-hour trading volume is just shy of $21,000 (which means that the market is very, very thinly traded).

    On its website, envion still bills itself as the “world’s most profitable standard of self-expanding crypto infrastructure.” The company claims to have “engineered an extremely mobile mining solution, hosted in standardized CSC containers and ready for ‘plug-and-play’ deployment at any energy source.” The team boldly proclaims, “Scalability is no issue for us” (a boastful statement that should surely raise eyebrows).

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