Debevoise on Blockchain Tokens and Initial Coin Offerings: New Year, New Perspective

Sales of blockchain tokens in so-called initial coin offerings (“ICOs”)[1] exploded in 2017. According to CoinSchedule, a website that tracks ICO (or digital token sale) data, the total amount raised in ICOs in 2017 was $3,700,682,293, which compares to $96,389,917 raised in 2016.[2]

Perhaps not surprisingly, 2017 was also a year of increasing focus by U.S. regulators on ICOs. The Securities and Exchange Commission (the “SEC”) launched a new Cyber Unit and took its first significant enforcement actions against promoters of ICOs.

As the calendar opens on a new year, it seems appropriate to revisit and assess the … Read more

Debevoise & Plimpton discusses JOBS Act General Solicitations

In a September 9 letter (“Letter”),[1] the Division of Swap Dealer and Intermediary Oversight (“DSIO”) of the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (“CFTC”) granted exemptive relief permitting general solicitation under certain circumstances by commodity pool operators (“CPOs”) that rely on CFTC Regulation 4.7(b) and 4.13(a)(3). The exemptive relief was issued in response to amendments made by the Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”) pursuant to the Jumpstart Our Business Startups Act (“JOBS Act”) to permit general solicitation in certain unregistered securities offerings. The exemptive relief will facilitate the use of Rules 506(c) and 144A(d)(1) by a large number of CPOs, including private … Read more