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Sion to purchase shareholding in Arbitrade

Company move: Sion Trading FZE has entered a conditional agreement to purchase a major shareholding of Arbitrade (File photograph)

The company that is acting as the precious metals procurement agent for Arbitrade is set to become a major shareholder of the cryptocurrency exchange and coin company.

Sion Trading FZE has entered into a conditional agreement for the acquisition of the shares in Arbitrade Ltd currently held by Leila Holdings Limited, a Bermuda exempted company owned by Arbitrade founder Troy Hogg.

In a brief statement, Arbitrade said the deal will happen subject to the approval of the Bermuda Monetary Authority, and added that BMA consent and completion of the share transfer is expected in the near future.

Len Schutzman, chief executive officer and chairman of Arbitrade, said: “Sion has been a valued partner in the development of the Arbitrade business and we are delighted that one of the largest gold trading companies, that procures gold from mines around the world, will be playing a larger role in the company going forward.”

Among Arbitrade’s directors is William Richard Sanders, who is listed on its website as also being a director of Sion Trading FZE.

Mr Hogg is one of the two shareholders of Arbitrade Properties (Victoria Hall) Ltd, a subsidiary of Arbitrade, that gained government clearance to take possession of Victoria Hall, on Victoria Street, at the end of October.

Arbitrade has named Victoria Hall as its global headquarters and said that once its subsidiary Arbitrade Exchange (Bermuda) Ltd, is licensed under the Digital Asset Business Act 2018, it will commence hiring for positions with the company.

Sion Trading FZE holds a commercial licence in the Ras Al Khaimah economic zone of the United Arab Emirates, where its activity is listed as trading non-manufactured precious metals. It is a subsidiary of Scotia International of Nevada Inc, a mining equipment supply company based in Salt Lake City, Utah.

Last month, Sion Trading announced it had secured a precious metals contract with Don David Gold Mexico to purchase “metal dore” from its Oaxaca Mining Unit. It said it planned to allocate precious metals, including those bought from Don David Gold Mexico “to further enhance Arbitrade’s existing gold assets”.

Arbitrade said in November that it had “title’”to 395,000 kilograms of gold bullion, which would be worth $16.2 billion at current prices, to back its coins and tokens. One of the tokens is called “dignity” and is in circulation.

The company has not said who has given it title to the gold and under what conditions, nor where the gold is, or the name of the “independent public accounting firm” that it says has verified the account. It has stated the reason for this is because it is legally bound by non-disclosure and privacy obligations.

A spokesman at Sion Trading FZE last month told The Royal Gazette: “I can’t speak on behalf of Arbitrade, but Arbitrade has title to it [the bullion], end of story. I don’t know what the contract or deal between it is, but they have ownership of it.”