In May, we received the news: Pierre Arens would be the new CEO of OneCoin. Some time later, a well-known Luxembourg media portal on business, banking and finance published a report in which Mr. Arens explains his reasons for accepting the position and his future plans for the company. Today, you can read that article in translation. And find the original here.
Pierre Pitt Arens, The former Luxembourg banker surprised everyone by becoming the CEO of the controversial company OneCoin, suspected of applying the fraudulent Ponzi model. The aforementioned denies the allegations and prefers to focus on the growth potential of a technology (cryptocurrency) that is not yet recognized.
This is called a challenge, a bet that may seem a little crazy. Pitt Arens, 55, who also is a general manager of Banque Invik in Luxembourg, director of corporate finance at ING and co-director of corporate finance at Bil, is now the CEO of OneCoin, the area of cryptocurrencies.
Pitt Arens started on this new job position in March this year, but was officially announced last weekend at an event organized by the OneLife group, founded by a Bulgarian entrepreneur, Ruja Ignatova (the group has no relationship with the life insurance company of Luxembourg with the same name). OneCoin, a company with about 200 employees, is headquartered in Dubai, but the main technical infrastructure is located in Bulgaria, the native country of Ignatova.
But OneCoin is also, and above all, a controversial society that, for a whole year, has had to face numerous suspicions widely spread on the Internet, accused of being nothing more than a Ponzi-type fraud (a fraudulent financial arrangement consisting in remunerating the investments of the existing clients with funds provided by new clients, a model for which Bernard Madoff was sentenced to 150 years in prison in the United States).
“You should know that I had studied the project thoroughly for almost four months,” says Pitt Arens in Paperjam.lu. “OneCoin has simply been a victim of a vast and massive denigration campaign, very well prepared and organized mainly from Europe. We have identified the sources of these attacks, and legal proceedings are underway. For now, OneCoin has not been officially charged or convicted of any crime in any market in the world”.
This doesn’t prevent some authorities from being very suspicious. On 17 April, BaFin (a German financial sector supervisory authority) demanded the definitive cessation of OneCoin’s activities in Germany.
“I am a responsible parent, I would never have taken a risk of associating with an organization that was illegal or fraudulent,” argues Arens, who prefers to focus more on the growth potential of the cryptocurrency.
Thus, he highlights the company’s policy “that controls and audits all those who want to do business with us through a procedure called KYC (know your client) based on our own Blockchain. In each transaction, the sender and receiver are fully identified. There is no place for those who want to make transactions anonymously “.
The company OneCoin, which is not subject to the control by regulatory authorities, specializes in selling online educational materials in order to popularize the use of cryptocurrencies. Various educational packages contain “tokens”, which must then be converted into digital money used for the purchase of services or goods.
“At the moment, we have 3.3 million currency holders, while the company has only been active for two years. We expect to reach 5 million in a year. At the same, time we have already more than 30,000 merchants registered on our online trading platform DealShaker and we are aiming to attract 100,000 more by the end of the year. We have just signed a contract with a major online travel company that will soon go public”.
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