Finfluencer PR Sundar and Mansun Consulting Settle with Sebi for Unregistered Investment Advisory Services.
PR Sundar, along with his company Mansun Consulting and co-promoter Mangayarkarasi Sundar, have reached a settlement with the Securities and Exchange Board of India (Sebi) regarding allegations of providing investment advisory services without proper registration.
As per the settlement, the three parties have agreed to a one-year prohibition on buying, selling, or dealing in securities, in addition to paying a settlement amount. They are also required to disgorge over Rs 6 crore, which includes profits earned from advisory services and interest.
The Settlement Order, issued on May 25, details the payment of a settlement amount of Rs 15,60,000 each, totaling Rs 46,80,000. The disgorgement amount, including 12 percent annual interest from June 01, 2020, until the submission of the revised settlement terms in February 2023, is calculated as Rs 6,07,69,863.
Sebi's investigation revealed that PR Sundar operated the website www.prsundar.blogspot.com, offering various advisory service packages without proper registration. The fees collected for these services were routed through the bank account of Mansun Consulting. Mansun, incorporated in June 2017, is equally owned by PR Sundar and Mangayarkarasi Sundar.
Upon examining the evidence, Sebi found that advisory services were being provided through the blog since 2013, promoting Telegram channels and a payment channel for subscription. Analysis of a sample of recommendations showed that they fell under the definition of 'investment advice' as per SEBI (Investment Advisers) Regulations, 2013. The fees collected through Razorpay and direct credit in Mansun's bank account amounted to over Rs 4.36 crore and Rs 23.5 lakh, respectively.
Sebi issued notices to the three entities in May 2022, followed by a supplementary notice in November 2022, highlighting their violations. The settlement was reached after PR Sundar, Mansun Consulting, and Mangayarkarasi Sundar filed applications for settlement during the ongoing proceedings.
The settlement terms were discussed in January 2023, and revised settlement terms were filed in February 2023, finalizing the agreement.