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Telegram to delay its blockchain launch following SEC pressure

By Yana Berman

Messenger could return money to investors, who disagree with the decision

Messaging app Telegram, which planned to roll out its own blockchain by the end of October, will delay the launch due to a lawsuit from the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC).

The announcement was sent to the project's investors via mail. The information was confirmed by crypto media Coindesk.

According to the letter, the deadline will be moved to April 30, 2020. Telegram cites the recent lawsuit by the SEC that accused the company of illegally selling a digital-asset securities called Grams.

The investors were also offered to sign a form that approves the extension of the deadline till April 2020. If the majority disagrees with the new date, Telegram will be able to return around 77 per cent of the amounts invested to them.

In mid-October the SEC announced it was suing Telegram Group Inc and its wholly-owned subsidiary TON Issuer Inc. for raising $1.7 bn in an unregistered digital token offering.

The paper claims that Telegram sold more than 2.9 bn digital tokens called “Grams” to 171 investors worldwide, with more than 1 bn Grams sold to 39 US purchasers. The move is considered illegal, as the SEC requires all token offering to be registered under the Securities Act of 1933.

TON (Telegram Open Network) project raised $1.7 billion for the launch of its blockchain and Gram tokens in January 2018.

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