SEC issues CDO against digital currency firm Forsage

The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has ordered Forsage Philippines to stop soliciting investments from the public through a crowdfunding platform based on the Ethereum blockchain technology.

Forsage was also barred from transacting any business involving funds in its depository banks and from transferring in any matter all of its assets to ensure the protection of its investors.

The order also covers the company’s operators, representatives, salesmen, and agents, including Rich Alex Apuntar, Vhellpoe Forlares Garves, Yuka Kuroyanagi, Christopher Doroliat, Iam Kim, Jairra Fab Teoxon, Mark Nicole Escabarte Valeria, Myra Cris Sapar, Romnick Melañez, and Vel Cabalza.

Under its scheme, Forsage offers two commission programs or cycle tiers that promise payouts to investors for a minimum investment of only P600.

Forsage also promises income through “spillovers,” which are overflows or surplus of referrals gathered by a passive member’s sponsor or downline.

The scheme involves the sale/offer of securities to the public in the form of investment contracts, whereby a person invests his money in a common enterprise and is led to expect profits primarily from the efforts of others, the SEC said.

According to the SEC, Forsage is not authorized to sell securities to the public. Neither is it registered with the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas, which requires all entities engaged in virtual currencies to secure a certificate of registration to operate as a remittance and transfer company.

“[T]he investment practices of Forsage, if not restrained, will operate as a fraud on investors or to the investing public as it utilizes a ‘Ponzi scheme’,” the SEC said.

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