According to a report by South China Morning Post (SCMP), Hong Kong-based blockchain giant, Animoca Brands, has announced its plans to shift its focus to markets outside the U.S. This strategic move comes in the wake of the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission’s (SEC) decision to label the firm’s Sand cryptocurrency token as an unregistered security, amid recent lawsuits against major crypto exchanges Binance and Coinbase Global.
Sand is the native crypto token used by Animoca’s metaverse platform, The Sandbox. It was among more than a dozen tokens explicitly labeled as securities by the SEC, a list that also includes Solana, Polygon, and Mana – the token used in the Decentraland virtual world. This decision by the SEC has elevated the legal risks for any company involved in selling these tokens.
Despite the regulatory challenges in the U.S., Animoca Brands remains optimistic about its global operations. The company’s co-founder and chairman, Yat Siu, commented in an email, “Animoca Brands is not focused on a single territory but operates globally. The SEC focuses on the U.S., so that should not have an impact on Animoca Brands in broader markets where Sand is widely available and accepted, including in more progressive jurisdictions like Hong Kong and Japan.”
Siu also disclosed that Animoca has already initiated measures to emphasize more on other markets in response to the recent “blockchain-hostile” approach observed in the U.S. This strategic shift represents Animoca’s adaptive response to the evolving regulatory landscape and is reflective of a broader industry trend towards seeking more cryptocurrency-friendly jurisdictions.