Animoca Brands, the digital entertainment, cryptocurrency metaverse and blockchain company that was thrown off the ASX in 2020, has been fined $50,000 after legal action by company regulator ASIC after failing to provide annual and semi-annual financial statements between 2019 and 2021. reports submitted.
The company failed to appear in Downing Center Court on June 21 and was convicted in his absence on five charges for failing to file annual financial reports with ASIC for fiscal years 2019 to 2021; and submit semi-annual reports between 2020 and 2021.
In response, Animoca issued a statement saying it was “not aware of the proceeding” until ASIC’s media release on the matter.
“The company is working with its legal counsel, King & Wood Mallesons, to resolve the matter,” the statement said.
“The company is also investigating the circumstances that led to this situation and will work productively with ASIC to ensure Animoca Brands shareholders are protected.
“The company continues to work with its auditors to complete its outstanding financial reports as soon as possible and will keep its shareholders informed of further noteworthy developments.”
The Hong Kong-based company, run by 49-year-old Vienna-born Yat Siu, specializes in gaming, metaverse, NFT and digital assets and will continue to operate in Australia.
In April, Animoca acquired Perth-based digital marketing agency Be Media amid plans to focus on NFTs and blockchain development, and rebranded it as Be Media by Animoca Brands.
A week later, Metakey, a Melbourne-based crypto and NFT startup, raised $3.5 million for a $50 million valuation, in a round led by animoca Brands and Mark Carnegie’s MHC Digital fund.
Animoca Brands has made over 340 NFT and blockchain related investments. In 2019 it is led an investment in Sky Mavis, maker of Axie Infinity, which was hit by a US$625 million hack in March, and reopened this week, again featuring Ronin Bridge. Sky Mavis is refunding its users $216.5 million – that figure reflects Ethereum’s depreciation since the hack.
In May 2021, Animoca raised $88,888,888 (about A$113.5 million) for a valuation of A$1.28 billion — a 10x higher market cap from $120 million 13 months earlier when it was evicted from the ASX because it did not meet listing requirements and filing financial reports.
It was originally listed on the ASX in January 2015 through a backdoor relisting of a mining stock. It was founded in January 2014 by Yat Siu and David Kim.
A lack of audited numbers hasn’t dampened investor enthusiasm for Animoca, which announced in January of this year that it had raised an additional $358.9 million (A$500 million), raising the valuation by 400% in just 8 months. rose to US$5 billion (A$6.6 billion). ) valuation.
At the time, the company claimed to hold $2.9 billion worth of digital assets in September 2021, which had grown in value to $15.9 billion by November last year.
Backers in the latest raise were reportedly funds managed by George Soros and the Winklevoss twins through their crypto firm Gemini.
Ashok Jacob, executive chairman of Ellerston Capital, praised Animoca after backing the 2021 raise, saying founder Yat Siu had displayed “an extraordinary ability to execute” and explained his vision.
“By combining real ownership of digital assets and rewarding users for activities that increase the value of a network, Web 3.0 promotes a much more equitable economic model and incentive structure for the Internet,” said Jacob.
“Animoca Brands is at the forefront of ushering in this evolution that will lead to an explosion of the digital economy and more equitable flows of money and power on the net.”