Do Kwon is the founder of Terra (LUNA), a DeFi ecosystem with $29 billion in Total Value Locked (TVL) within its protocols. Its marquee stablecoin, UST, is now the world’s third-largest stablecoin with a $15-billion market capitalization.
UST’s market cap was just $1 billion one year ago.
But with success comes scrutiny. Some lawyers advising the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) told Kwon’s lawyer that the watchdog should file an enforcement action against Mirror (MIR), a US stock-based trading service connected to Terra.
The SEC has already subpoenaed Kwon and is suing for procedural advances like service and document productions (disclosures) moving forward.
As head of TerraForm Labs, South Korean entrepreneur Kwon beneficially controls billions of dollars worth of equity and tokens throughout the Terra ecosystem: LUNA, UST, MIR, money market Anchor Protocol (ANC), automated market maker Astroport (ASTRO), and credit protocol MARS.
To contextualize Kwon’s importance in the crypto industry, below is a timeline of his career.
No doubt, participants and market observers alike will follow the developments of this billionaire as the Terra ecosystem evolves.
2010-2015: Do Kwon attends Stanford University, majoring in Computer Science. He graduates with a Bachelor’s degree.
October 2017: Kwon leaves his position as CEO of Anyfi.
January 2018: Terraform Labs launches with plans to develop an e-commerce platform called Chai.
2019: Forbes lists Kwon on its 30 Under 30 list for the “VC and Finance” category.
February 2019: Terra conducts the initial coin offering of its governance and backing token, LUNA. From the starting supply of 1 billion LUNA, 30% was given to the founders and the project, and 26% was sold to venture capital investors. If the venture capitalists were able to participate in the seed round, they got in at a price of $0.18 per LUNA, and if they got in during the private sale, they paid $0.80 per LUNA (price at press time: $108).
June 2019: Terraform Labs rolls out its “Columbus-2” mainnet upgrade, replacing “Columbus-1.”
November 2019: Terraform Labs deploys next iteration, Columbus-3, in testnet.
February 2020: GDAC launches a staking derivative product for Terra’s primary governance and backing token, LUNA.
September 2020: Terra.Money, Kwon’s main website, launches TerraUSD (UST) with plans to make it an interchain stablecoin. It initially launches on Ethereum and Solana blockchains.
December 2020: Terraform Labs launches Mirror Protocol (MIR) on which digital representations of real stocks can be traded.
February 2021: Delphi Digital, a Manhattan-based institutional research service for Wall Street investors, initiates coverage on Terra. Delphi will eventually advise Terra companies and receive tokens in their various projects as compensation.
May 24, 2021: The SEC’s Enforcement Division sends Kwon a formal email about Mirror Labs, advancing its investigation into Terraform Labs and Kwon.
May 2021: Law firm Dentons US LLP notifies the SEC that Terraform Labs and Kwon have retained their counsel to represent them in matters related to the SEC’s inquiries.
July 2021: The SEC interviews Kwon via web conference. Two Dentons partners attend interview.
September 9, 2021: Kwon introduces “Project Dawn,” a plan to fund infrastructure and core technology development for the Terra ecosystem.
September 15, 2021: SEC attorneys inform Terraform Labs that enforcement action may be warranted against Terraform Labs and that cooperation from Terraform Labs may lead to a reduced penalty. Terraform Labs later opts to sue the SEC, alleging that the SEC’s requests for documents and cooperation were vague and flawed.
September 17, 2021: A Dentons attorney again contacts an SEC attorney to request that the agency provide greater clarification on what Terraform Labs can do to resolve the SEC’s concerns.
September 20, 2021: The SEC serves Kwon with papers related to its investigation into his Mirror Protocol at a New York conference, Mainnet. Indiegogo founder Slava Rubin observed the public service of papers.
September 26, 2021: Dentons lawyers request a copy of the SEC order of document service upon Kwon. It alleges in a court filing that the SEC never produced that order.
November 1, 2021: Terra’s community discovers that Kwon personally received about 88 million LUNA (worth over $3 billion) of the ecosystem’s funds into a wallet he controls. He assured the community that “stealing $3 billion is not the game theoretic optimal point for me, so I will not.” To date, he has not appropriated those funds.
November 12, 2021: SEC files for a subpoena enforcement action seeking to require Terraform Labs and Kwon to comply with subpoenas for documents and testimony related to his Mirror Protocol.
November 18, 2021: Mobile game developer Gamevil Com2us platform announces a strategic partnership to develop on Terra’s blockchain ecosystem.
November 21, 2021: Another DeFi ecosystem, Aave, proposes adding support for UST. Delphi Digital expresses support for this proposal.
November 22, 2021: Saber adds new CASH pools with a stablecoin supporting wrapped UST tokens.
November 24, 2021: Pyth adds Terra to its market data platform.
November 25, 2021: Kado Pay launches a Terra-based e-commerce platform.
December 3, 2021: Orne.io announces Terra-based NFTs representing ownership of physical trees.
December 6, 2021: Payment network Flexa adds support for UST and LUNA.
December 8, 2021: Risk Harbor announces an audit of Ozone contracts.
December 8, 2021: VC firm Chiron raises $50 million to invest in development of the Terra ecosystem.
December 17, 2021: Dentons attorney Douglas W. Henkin files a document with a New York federal court detailing the allegedly inappropriate serving of papers on Kwon by a process server working for the SEC. The document argues that the SEC violated a rule Rule 150(b) for properly serving legal papers.
December 21, 2021: Terra Bites submits a community grant proposal for Terra Bites v2.
December 26, 2021: Terra reaches a $10 billion market capitalization.
December 20, 2021: Kwon’s attorneys argue in a New York court hearing that the SEC violated its own rules by improperly serving papers on Kwon at a New York City conference.
December 20, 2021: Natalie Luu joins Terraform Labs as Head of Ecosystem Development.
December 23, 2021: Binance lists UST for trading.
December 30, 2021: Outlet ships its debit card with support for the Terra ecosystem.
December 30, 2021: Risk Harbor launches an algorithmic risk management system on Terra Mainnet.
January 1, 2022: Terra becomes the world’s second-largest DeFi ecosystem behind Ethereum with over $18 billion in total value locked.
January 5, 2022: Terraform Labs Employee “TheIntern” proposes reducing Terra’s tax rate to zero.
January 18, 2022: Terra sponsors blockchain dev unit Confio.
January 19, 2022: Legal compliance guru Larry Florio joins Terra as Chief Corporate Counsel.
January 19, 2022: Terra forms Luna Foundation Guard, a Singapore-registered non-profit to support the Terra ecosystem.
January 24, 2022: Anderson Kill shareholder Noah Axler joins Terra as Chief Litigation and Regulatory Counsel.
January 31, 2022: Kwon proposes raising 40 million UST to partner with an American sports team.
February 3, 2022: Avalanche-slash-Ethereum decentralized exchange Pangolin makes UST a default token on token swap service.
February 15, 2022: Passport Protocol launches open analytics framework for creation of incentive models to inspire continued Terra-powered activity.
February 21, 2022: Terra’s MARS Protocol (MARS) begins accepting Terra deposits and locking.
February 22, 2022: Luna Foundation Guard raises $1 billion to create a partially Bitcoin-backed reserve fund to defend UST’s $1 peg.
February 23, 2022: Terraform Labs petitions a New York federal court to pause enforcement of the SEC’s subpoenas.
February 23, 2022: Outlet will launch debit cards for Terra ecosystem the first week of March.
February 25, 2022: SEC petitions a New York court to deny Terraform Labs’ bid to continue pausing its attempt to enforce subpoenas.
February 28, 2022: solUST launches staking for Terra on Solana’s Blockchain.
March 1, 2022: A New York court denies Terraform Labs’ petition to continue pausing the SEC’s bid to enforce its subpoenas.
March 9, 2022: Terra updates its cross-blockchain bridge to support sending UST and LUNA to fledgling networks Secret Network, Injective, Osmosis, and Axelor Core.
March 11, 2022: Terraform Labs donates 12 million LUNA to Luna Foundation Guard ($1.3 billion).
March 13, 2022: Twitter user “Sensei Algod” opens a $1 million bearish bet on LUNA.
March 14, 2022: Prominent crypto influencer Cobie provides an escrow service for a bet between Kwon and pseudonymous trader “Sensei Algod” on the price of LUNA in one year. (The escrow wallet holds $22 million worth of Tether (USDT) and USD Coin (USDC) as of publication time.)
March 14, 2022: In response to a bet on the future price of LUNA, Kwon offers $1 million donation to Terra-based charitable organization Angel Protocol.
March 14, 2022: Kwon announces plans to increase LFG’s Bitcoin treasury to $10 billion.
March 15, 2022: Luna Foundation Guard Council votes to burn 4 million LUNA to mint 372 million UST.
March 15, 2022: Reactor launches an optimized yield platform for Terra.
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