YouTeller controversy brews before beginning business

On Jan. 30 not long after NETeller announced it was closing its doors to U.S. gamblers, a new company stepped up to potentially take on the abandoned customers. YouTeller.com plans to officially open for business in March, but it's already facing some controversy over what looks to be a case of mistaken identity before even taking on its first customer.

eGaming Review online magazine reported today that it had looked into YouTeller and thought the site appeared to be making false claims of being certified by the U.K. Financial Services Authority (FSA).

On the YouTeller site, it says the site is a trademark of Seed Capital Ltd., which is listed as being certified as a Small E-money Issuer by the FSA.

However, when eGaming Review looked up Seed Capital Ltd., they found it was owned by Oxford Technology Management, which is at a different address than the one listed on the YouTeller site.

When contacted by the online magazine, Oxford said it hadn't heard of YouTeller.

"It was just a mistake," said Florian Schweitzer, YouTeller co-founder, after being contacted by PokerListings.com.

He continued saying, "We - Seed Capital Ltd. - are the owner of a 'Small E-Money Issuer Certificate.' The Oxford-based 'Seed Capital (Publishing) Ltd.' may have another authorization, but the company that is listed as a Small E-Money Issuer on the FSA Web site is definitely our company based in London."

YouTeller also provides their registration number in their contact information on the site which can be used to look up Seed Capital Ltd. at Companies House, which confirms the address for the company listed on the YouTeller Web site.

All limited companies in the U.K. are registered at Companies House, an Executive Agency of the Department of Trade and Industry.

Seed Capital Ltd. was registered at Companies House in October 2006. According to a Jan. 30 press release from YouTeller, Seed Capital Ltd. was also granted the Small E-Money Issuer certificate in January of this year, making it possible to operate as an e-wallet.

In that same press release, the other co-founder, Johannes Knierzinger, is quoted, and he is listed as the domain owner for YouTeller.com when you look up its records on WHOIS.

Schweitzer also provided PokerListings.com with a contact at the FSA to confirm the misunderstanding, but at the time of publishing it was after hours in the U.K. and were unable to contact them.

YouTeller is planning to begin service once it completes its server-security testing period. The e-wallet is already garnering some buzz in the online poker forums as a good alternative now that NETeller has stopped use for U.S. online gamblers.

In the company's initial press release, Schweitzer emphasized that YouTeller has no overseas branch in a NAFTA country like NETeller or Citadel, so it isn't affected by U.S. legislation.

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