Ounces Media is being investigated by the Justice Division and the SEC, report says

Carlos Watson information a TV debate for Take On America With OZY at The Bently Reserve on October 29, 2018 in San Francisco, California.

Kimberly White | Getty Photos

Scandal-plagued Ounces Media is being investigated by the U.S. Justice Division and the Securities and Change Fee, in response to a brand new report.

Federal prosecutors within the Jap District of New York have contacted at the least one agency that handled Ounces, whereas the SEC has reached out to 2 firms that talked about investing in Ounces, The New York Instances reported, citing folks with data of the matter.

It was not instantly clear what the investigations had been targeted on, in response to the newspaper.

Ounces retained legal professional Andrew Levander of the agency Dechert, the Instances added. Levander did not instantly reply to CNBC’s request for remark.

Ounces instructed staffers it was shutting down in early October, following a number of days of adverse media consideration. The controversy was triggered by a Instances article that described how Ounces’s working chief, Samir Rao, impersonated a YouTube government on a convention name with Goldman Sachs, which was contemplating investing $40 million in Ounces. The report additionally mentioned Ounces had additionally allegedly inflated its month-to-month distinctive guests, a metric utilized by media corporations to lure advertisers.

Following the Instances report, a number of high folks within the firm stop, together with former BBC anchor Katty Kay and investor-chairman Marc Lasry.

CNBC additionally reported that media persona and music trade veteran Sharon Osbourne accused the corporate’s co-founder and CEO, Carlos Watson, of mendacity when he had mentioned two years earlier that Osbourne and her husband, the rocker Ozzy, invested within the firm following a authorized battle.

Just a few days after the corporate introduced its closure, Watson denied that Ounces can be shutting down. He didn’t clarify how he would hold the corporate open.

In an on-air CNBC interview, Watson criticized media reviews about his firm, but additionally admitted that Ounces ought to have carried out a greater job with information, advertising, tradition and management.

Ounces additionally acquired $5.7 million in federal Covid aid loans. Days after Watson mentioned the corporate would not be closing down, CNBC reported that a number of former Ounces staff claimed they did not obtain any of the cash whilst the corporate trimmed employees and claimed it had reached profitability in 2020.

Learn the total New York Instances report right here.

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