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Coinbase "Willing To Do Anything" To Be Regulated By SEC
a recap of coinbase's twitter space on the wells enforcement today
In a Twitter Space today, Coinbase leadership expressed frustration about what they say have been their repeated attempts to “be regulated” by the SEC over the past decade, and particularly over the last nine months. "We've tried to become regulated by the SEC. We're willing to do anything here," Coinbase CEO Brian Armstrong said. The Space came on the heels of the SEC issuing the company a Wells notice, which indicates a likely enforcement action.
Over the last nine months, the company met with the SEC over 30 times to share the company’s data, files, practices, product information, and answers to “any question the SEC wanted to ask,” said Armstrong.
After these information gathering meetings, the SEC scheduled a meeting with Coinbase to provide the company guidance, but then abruptly cancelled it at the last minute, according to Armstrong.
A few weeks later, the SEC issued Coinbase a Wells notice.
Even before the meetings, the SEC already had a comprehensive picture of Coinbase and its products by way of the company’s S1, which every company must submit to the SEC in order to go public. “The SEC allowed us to become a public company knowing all these details. The question is, 'what has changed?’” Armstrong said. "[Nothing changed], yet now they're serving us with this Wells notice.”
Leadership at Coinbase expressed dismay that they don’t even know what the Wells notice is about."We don't know what products they're concerned about,” Coinbase Chief Legal Officer Paul Grewal said. “We've simply been told nothing, even [after we asked the SEC what they're concerned about]."
"If there aren't clear rules, how can we be expected to follow them?" Armstrong asked. The company is “happy to go to court, if that’s what it takes” to get clarity.
“We have been effectively begging for rules,” said Kara Calvert, who oversees US policy at Coinbase.
Armstrong and the other hosts urged the Spaces’ listeners to sign up for Crypto435, an initiative that connects crypto-issue constituents with their elected representatives and makes it easy to contact them to advocate for fair crypto regulation.