Music streamer Akazoo accepts $ 38.8 million settlement for SEC fraud charges

Oct. 27 (Reuters) – The United States Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) on Wednesday said it had settled the charges against Akazoo SA, a Greek company posing as a music streaming company, for $ 38.8 million after that the company allegedly defrauded investors out of tens of millions of dollars.

Akazoo went public through a Special Purpose Acquisition Company (SPAC) in 2019. The SEC froze the company’s assets a year ago as part of an investigation into the company’s allegations.

According to the SEC, Akazoo told investors that it is a fast growing music streaming company focused on emerging markets with more than 38.2 million registered users and $ 120 million in annual revenue, but in reality the company had no paying users and negligible income.

An Akazoo lawyer, who neither admitted nor denied the SEC findings, declined to comment.

Since late 2020. The SEC has issued investor warnings, set up an enforcement sweep of banks involved in transactions and said it is considering a regulatory change.

“The SEC is intensely focused on PSPC merger transactions, and we will continue to hold criminals in this space accountable,” David Peavler, regional director of the SEC’s Fort Worth regional office, said in a statement.

Akazoo accepted the judgment in April 2021. The settlement, announced Wednesday, orders Akazoo to return $ 38.8 million in ill-gotten gains.

The SEC said the total would be happy with the company’s payment of $ 35 million to investors and settlements in several private class actions.

Reporting by Kanishka Singh in Bengaluru and Chris Prentice in Washington; Editing by Leslie Adler, Richard Pullin and Lincoln Feast

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