Telegram Agrees to Hand Over Trove of ICO Documents to SEC


Telegram has filed an order of consent agreeing to provide a trove of communications and documentation requested by the United States Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) on May 7.

The communications concern the distribution of Telegram’s Gram tokens and purchase agreements relating to its 2018 initial coin offering (ICO).

Telegram’s consent comes amid the Free Telegram Open Network (TON) community’s decision to launch a version of the TON blockchain via a ‘fork’.

The SEC halted Telegram’s offering in October 2019 for conducting an unlicensed offering of securities. After six months of proceedings, New York District Judge P. Kevin Castel issued a preliminary injunction on March 24 this year barring the firm from launching TON. 

U.S.-based investors are being refunded at a rate of 72 cents on the dollar, while international participants can take a 72% refund now or wait until April 2021 in exchange for a 110% refund.

Telegram consents to SEC discovery

Telegram has agreed to provide the SEC with “its communications regarding any agreements offered or entered into with the Initial Purchasers” of its Gram tokens by May 20.

The firm will provide additional bank records to the regulator, and respond to questions concerning the financial statements that it has already submitted.

Information “regarding any assets disbursed to Initial Purchasers under the Purchase Agreements and assets received from Initial Purchasers in connection with the termination of the Purchase Agreements” will also be provided.

Telegram has also agreed to the SEC’s discovery requests from February, and has agreed not to object on the basis of timeliness. However, the firm has reserved all other rights and objections.

‘Free TON’ community launches without Telegram

Telegram’s consent order was filed on the same day that the ‘Free TON’ community launched a version of the TON blockchain, in apparent defiance of both the SEC and Telegram founder Pavel Durov. The Free TON community has declared that “the initial creator TON (Telegram/The Open Network) blockchain, can longer be involved.”