Cryptocurrency platform Abra has reached a settlement with Texas securities regulators, enabling users to withdraw their funds and ensuring compliance with existing securities laws.
Abra recently reached a settlement with Texas securities regulators, marking a development in regulating digital asset services. The agreement allows users to withdraw funds from Abra, addressing concerns raised by the Texas State Securities Board.
Under the settlement terms, Abra must issue checks or secure bank instruments to clients with more than $10 in assets on the platform. This action follows the Board’s discovery that Abra held approximately $13.6 million in crypto assets for around 12,000 customers at the time of the regulatory action.
Texas Securities Commissioner Travis J. Iles emphasized existing securities laws’ applicability to traditional and innovative financial products.
“Existing securities laws are well equipped to protect investors purchasing traditional products such as stocks or bonds as well as new and innovative securities tied to digital assets and evolving technologies,” said Commissioner Iles.
The settlement stipulates a 30-day period for Abra and its CEO, William Barhydt, to fulfill their obligations. Any remaining assets will be converted to fiat currency and distributed to Texas investors. Additionally, Barhydt is required to appoint a chief compliance officer for any entity he controls that offers investment advice or securities.
This agreement follows a cease and desist order issued to Abra and Barhydt in June, citing misleading public statements related to investment offers in Abra Earn. The company, which had ambitions to become the first regulated crypto bank in the U.S., faced challenges after the collapse of FTX and had to make personnel cuts before receiving the regulatory order.