Exclusive: IC Markets website blocked by regulator led to broken Inter Milan deal
FNG Exclusive… FNG has learned that the breakup of the IC Markets-Inter Milan sponsorship was precipitated, at least in part, by actions taken last month by Italian financial regulator CONSOB against IC Markets.
FNG reported exclusively last week that IC Markets was suing the iconic Italian soccer club, after Inter Milan cancelled the agreement with IC Markets which was to have seen the Australian Retail FX broker become Inter’s sleeve sponsor in a three-year deal worth upwards of €14.3 million. Inter cancelled the agreement after it claimed a breach by IC Markets, which apparently failed to make payments as agreed after an initial €2.5 million deposit was made when the agreement was signed in June.
IC Markets is suing to get back its original €2.5 million deposit. An initial hearing is scheduled on the matter in a Milan court in April 2021.
Certain media reports surfaced after our initial report on the deal cancelation that the sponsorship was called off after attempts by IC Markets to renegotiate down the size of the sponsorship because of the effects that COVID-19 is having on the potential of the sponsorship. We believe that this “excuse” was fed to these media outlets by IC Markets, but in our view it makes no sense as the agreement was as noted above just signed in June, well into the COVID-19 crisis. Italy was one of the first and hardest hit countries outside of China by the pandemic, resulting in lockdowns in Milan’s south east Bergamo region in late February.
What had more of an impact on the ultimate failed fate of the sponsorship, in our view, was an action that Italy’s financial regulator CONSOB took against IC Markets in early October. On October 8 CONSOB ordered the blackout of a number of websites which illegally offer financial services, including icmarkets.com. The icmarkets.com website is operated by IC Markets’ Seychelles based offshore entity Raw Markets Ltd.