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Maltese Koala Crypto asks MFSA for its license to be suspended

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The Malta Financial Services Authority (MFSA) suspended the crypto license of Chinese Koala Crypto Ltd, which is part of the Chinese Koala Group. It is understood that the Maltese companies involved are Koala Crypto Limited, Koala Malta Limited, and Koala Money Ltd. The UK-registered Koala Capital Limited is the holding company for these Maltese ventures. The Maltese Kari Pisani, one of the key directors of Koala Crypto, resigned late in 2021.

Key data

Trading nameKoala
Domainhttps://koala-capital.co.uk
Legal entitiesKoala Capital Limited (UK)
Koala Malta Ltd (Malta)
Koala Money Ltd (Malta)
Koala Crypto Ltd (Malta)
JurisdictionsMalta, United Kingdom
AuthorizationMFSA – e-Money Institution
MFSA – crypto (suspended)
Related individualsAlan Tak Wai Yau (Yautakwai), LinkdedIn
Liu Wang
Mingrui Xu
Wendy Haowei, LinkedIn
Kari Pisani
Alessandro Bartoli
Payment processorBank of Valetta

The narrative

The Koala Group is a British-Chinese venture controlled by British citizen Alan Tak Wai Yau and his Chinese partners. While the holding company is registered in London, the two MFSA-regulated entities are in Malta. There is likely been trouble for the Koala Group in Malta in recent weeks. The Maltese directors have resigned, and Koala Crypto‘s crypto license has been suspended. One of the resigned directors is Kari Pisani.

Kari Pisani, a former official at Sparkasse Bank Malta plc, was fined for breaching anti-money laundering rules. He resigned from his post as director and company secretary of Koala Crypto Limited. According to his website www.karipisani.com, he still holds a directorship at Malta’s Calamatta Cuschieri. This Maltese investments firm was found guilty of not following investments rules by the Maltese Arbiter for Financial Services. Kari Pisani is also a director in the Malta-based crypto venture Moneybite Limited, where his fellow directors, Ian Attard and Simona Camilleri, resigned in mid-2021.

According to public records, the Chinese citizen Mingriu Xu is a director of Koala Malta Limited and has not yet resigned. Another director who resigned lately is Alessandro Bartoli. Koala Crypto and its holding company Koala Malta Limited did not file any audited financial statements.

The share capital of the company was deposited at Bank of Valletta, another highly fined bank for breaching anti-money laundering rules. It is not known whether the largest Maltese bank, Bank of Valletta, still provides Koala with its banking services.

Malta was grey-listed by the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) in June 2021 and has since seen an exodus of licensed firms surrendering their licenses.

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