FSC revokes business license for scandal-stricken asset management company Optimus

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SEOUL, Nov. 24 (Yonhap) – The South Korean financial regulator on Wednesday decided to revoke the business license of Optimus Asset Management involved in a massive financial fraud that caused losses to thousands of investors.

The Financial Services Commission (FSS) also decided to order the dismissal of the executives of the private equity firm and the handing over of all of its 43 fund products to the jointly launched asset management company Recovery. by fund sellers by December 25, the regulator said in a press release. .

The state-run Korea Deposit Insurance Corp. will spearhead the scandal-ravaged Optimus liquidation process, according to the FSS.

Optimus was found to have raised 1.35 trillion won ($ 1.1 billion) from around 3,200 individual and institutional investors from April 2018 to June 2020, claiming the money would be invested in secure public institutions.

Most of the money, however, was actually invested in risky assets or used to pay returns to investors to give the impression that the company was engaged in serious and healthy financial transactions, according to investigators.

The scandal has also engulfed the country’s political and financial sectors, after one of the company’s internal documents leaked to the media last year, raising suspicions that some influential figures could have lobbied to help the company to conceal its fraudulent activities.

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