US: Inventor of Beats Headphones Applies to SEC for $300 mln ICO
Embattled headphone manufacturer Monster Products Inc. has applied to U.S. regulators to launch a giant $300 mln Initial Coin Offering (ICO), a Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) filing signed May 25 confirms.
Monster, which began trading in 1978 but in recent years became infamous for signing away the rights to its Beats headphones, now plans to issue 500 mln Monster Money Network (MMNY) tokens, selling 60% in its ICO. The SEC filing represents a registration of MMNY tokens as possible securities under U.S. law.
The proceeds will go towards the creation of a platform, based on the Ethereum blockchain, to allow investors to use tokens for purchases, which Monster breaks down into three stages:
- “Stage I: establish Monster Money Network to provide the basic transactional functions, such as Monster Money Wallets and processing transactions in MMNY Tokens;
- Stage II: establish a private off-chain platform where micro-transactions can be completed without or with very limited transaction costs caused by mining activities (“gas”).
- Stage III: complete Monster’s blockchain and integrate such blockchain to the operating systems of the Company, such as marketing, accounting and auditing, payroll services, inventory control and shipping management.”
The move makes Monster the latest major company to venture into the ICO arena, just one month after encrypted messenger app Telegram pulled the plug on the public section of its own offering.
Regulatory attitudes to the fundraising method continue to tighten, the U.S. part of a joint operation with Canada to investigate and punish companies that do not comply with established laws.
Included in Monster’s SEC filing is even a proviso regarding delays in issuance beyond two years:
“The holders of the Tokens may convert all or part of their Tokens to Common Stock of the Company at a ratio of four Tokens to one share of Common Stock in the event that (i) our Tokens shall not have become publicly tradable on June 30, 2020 or (ii) our Tokens shall have ceased trading publicly due to certain governmental enforcement actions on June 30, 2020.”
This week saw a glimpse of the culmination of another unplanned ICO incubation period as Tezos announced its beta and subsequent mainnet platform launch. Investors had waited almost a year since contributing to its $232 mln ICO in July 2017, launching several consumer lawsuits against Tezos for failing to distribute tokens.