ARTA, SEC deny LYKA request for company registration

ARTA, SEC deny LYKA request for company registration
Facebook photo of Lyka app
LYKA / Facebook via Interaksyon

MANILA, Philippines — The Anti-Red Tape Authority turned down play-to-earn app LYKA’s request to secure automatic approval to register the company.

In a statement on Thursday, ARTA said they denied LYKA Philippines Solutions Inc.’s registration application with the Securities and Exchange Commission since the company failed to submit all the necessary documents. 

The notice of denial was handed out on March 6. 

Earlier, the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas issued a cease and desist order against the platform and its proposed major stockholder, Things I Like Company Ltd. for violating the National Payment Systems Act. The app is likewise suspended for “possibly” engaging in money laundering. 

Lyka shot into prominence in 2020, as the platform rode the wave of digital transformation that sped up the adoption of cashless transactions during pandemic lockdowns. 

ARTA explained that LYKA president Michael Bryant T. Lim filed a request to the ARTA after indicating that the SEC failed to act on its application registration. Among other requirements, LYKA said it had submitted articles of incorporation, by-laws, application to do business, and corresponding incorporation fee. 

The required documents were necessary, as regulators note, since those would be used to evaluate the company’s financial health. 

The ARTA stood by the SEC’s decision. The government body explained that the automatic approval of company registration mandated by the Ease of Doing Business Act of 2018, did not apply to LYKA since the company was under investigation.

The anti-red tape body explained the law is only applicable once a company submits all the requisite documents.

Likewise, the wildly-popular app likewise failed to comply with a directive from the SEC’s Enforcement and Investor Protection Department. The regulator simply asked for proof of how the company finances operations, list of merchants and payables, and a document asserting the owners of GRL17 Nominee Limited, indicated as the founding member of Things I Like Company, Ltd.

“However, [Lim] failed to show proof that it submitted a clearance from the [EIPD]. Accordingly, it cannot be said that there was submission of complete documentary requirements as stated in the Citizen’s Charter of SEC for Registration of Corporations through eSPARC,” the ARTA said. — Ramon Royandoyan

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