Kraken’s new Defiant CEO won’t file with the SEC

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Key points to remember

  • Kraken’s new CEO, Dave Ripley, said his company has no plans to file with the SEC.
  • He insists that Kraken does not list assets that are securities and says he has no intention of doing so.
  • Ripley is currently COO of Kraken. He will succeed Jesse Powell as CEO, as announced this week.

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Kraken’s new CEO said his exchange has no plans to register with the US SEC.

Kraken does not list titles

Kraken resists SEC overreach.

On September 21Kraken has announced that its current CEO, Jesse Powell, will step down to be replaced by COO Dave Ripley.

Since that announcement, Ripley has commented on Kraken’s compliance plans. According ReutersRipley said Kraken had no reason to register with the United States Securities and Exchange Commission.

Ripley justified this by stating that Kraken does not deal in titles. He said there were “no tokens that are securities that we want to list.”

He admitted that if a token is of interest to Kraken and that token “simultaneously happens to be a security,” Kraken might be “interested in that direction.”

Ripley also stated that Kraken has no plans to delist tokens identified as securities in a separate case concerning the employees of its competitor Coinbase. Coinbase also denied that the relevant assets are securities, indicating that “No asset listed on our platform is a security.”

The SEC has never been definitive on whether cryptocurrencies qualify as securities.

A statement from former SEC Chairman Jay Clayton in 2018 suggested that Bitcoin and Ethereum are not securities because they did not seek early public investment.

Other cryptocurrency assets, which often rely on early stage investments or token sales, are more likely to be securities. SEC Chairman Gary Gensler said during an event at the Practicing Law Institute this month that the “vast majority” of cryptocurrencies are likely securities.

Both statements, although widely quoted, were made at public events, not in an official capacity. As such, the SEC can initiate investigations and bring charges against individuals and crypto companies as it sees fit.

While the SEC apparently has no intention of investigating Kraken, Ripley’s statements could attract regulator attention.

Disclosure: At the time of writing this article, the author of this article owned BTC, ETH, and other cryptocurrencies.

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