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Australian Regulator Appeals Loss in Finder’s Crypto Product Verdict

Shalini Nagarajan
Last updated: | 1 min read
Australian Regulator Appeals Finder's Crypto Product Verdict

The Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) is appealing the Federal Court’s dismissal of its case against Finder Wallet’s crypto product, Finder Earn.

“ASIC has appealed the Federal Court’s decision to dismiss ASIC’s proceedings against Finder Wallet Pty Ltd for allegedly providing unlicensed financial services, breaching product disclosure requirements and failing to comply with design and distribution obligations in relation to its crypto-asset related product ‘Finder Earn’,” the regulator said in a statement Wednesday.

ASIC sued Finder Wallet in Dec. 2022. The regulator then argued that Finder’s Earn product was an unlicensed debenture. Subsequently, Finder Wallet contested this in Federal Court, asserting ASIC misinterpreted Earn’s operations.

Back in March, the court ruled in favor of Finder Wallet, deeming its Earn product compliant and not an unlicensed financial service. The court essentially rejected ASIC’s claim that Earn constituted a debenture, and awarded costs to Finder.

Regulator Seeks Review Over Finder’s Licensing and Consumer Protection Concerns

Now, ASIC is appealing the decision as it is concerned that Finder Earn lacked proper licensing and consumer safeguards. The Federal Court will hear the appeal at a yet-determined date.

Finder Wallet, a subsidiary of comparison website, offered the Earn product from late February to Nov. 10, 2022. This product allowed users to deposit Australian dollars that were converted into a stablecoin (TAUD) pegged to the Australian dollar and then allocated to Finder Wallet.

Following ASIC’s concerns, Finder Earn was discontinued on Nov. 24, 2022, with all customer funds fully returned.