The Hong Kong Securities and Futures Commission (SFC) has halted Black Cell Technology’s ICO, no longer allowing its KROPS token sale to proceed within its jurisdiction, and has ordered all contributions to be returned to Hong Kong inhabitants who have already participated in the venture.
KROPS is intended to invigorate global agriculture by connecting growers and buyers on the blockchain via a mobile app. Products available include livestock, vegetables, fruit and rice.
HK Residents Added to Blacklist
Launched in the Philippines in January 2017, KROPS has reportedly grown quickly to an estimated $280 million worth of product inventory being placed up for sale by over 6,000 active users.
While the product itself addresses a pressing and earthly need, the company’s roadmap includes the lofty ambition of a New York Stock Exchange IPO in Q4 2021.
According to the SFC statement, however, by launching this ICO to Hong Kong residents “Black Cell has engaged in both unauthorised promotional and unlicensed regulated activities.”
The activities in question are seen by the SFC as being a Collective Investment Scheme (CIS), which are classed as securities, and therefore require prior authorisation and licensing before being offered to the Hong Kong public.
As a result, Black Cell Technology have agreed to unwind any Hong Kong based transactions already received.
While the ICO still officially has 53 days to run, the company’s documentation has been updated to add Hong Kong citizens to the list of American citizens residents and those from the Philippines who were already barred from participating.