WENZHOU, China, April 14, 2021 /PRNewswire/ -- ZK International Group Co., Ltd. (Nasdaq: ZKIN) ("ZKIN", "ZK International" or the "Company"), is pleased to announce that the Company has entered into a Letter of Intent to form a joint-venture with Altfunding, LLC, doing business as "Altbanc", a rapidly-growing, privately-held alternative lending platform. The Joint Venture will be branded as "xSigma Lending" where Altbanc will hold 49% ownership and ZKIN will hold 51% ownership. The purchase price is $2,000,000. The new partnership is expected to accelerate Altbanc's business development, while providing income yielding returns and value for ZKIN and its shareholders.

(PRNewsfoto/ZK International Group Co., Ltd.)

Since 2019, Altbanc has invested in distressed small to medium sized businesses ("SMBs") that are overleveraged with merchant cash advances ("MCA") debt, often nearing bankruptcy. Through its proven lending product, Altbanc has kept businesses afloat while providing investors with high-yield, secured debt investments. Under the new partnership, Altbanc will leverage ZKIN's successful track record of DeFi projects and will launch a Reg-S offering that will be used to fund a new fixed-income token. As part of ZKIN's investment in Altbanc, $1.5 million will be earmarked for ZKIN to participate in the token offering. All proceeds of the token sale will be deployed into refinancing MCAs that fit the Altbanc underwriting criteria. The loan proceeds from the MCA debt investments will be paid out to holders of the xSigma Lending security tokens. The token sale will not be available to US investors but the token will be fully compatible with existing decentralized exchanges and mainstream Ethereum based wallets. The purpose of the security token is to create a liquid security through which token holders can get exposure to MCA consolidations and to make these interest-bearing and low-risk investments accessible to a wider range of investors. 

As Altbanc scales and secures additional funding, ZKIN shareholders will accrue value through ownership in the Company's newest subsidiary, xSigma Lending. All proceeds from xSigma Lending originated loans will be paid out to token holders and ZKIN shareholders.

To achieve their goals, Altbanc has brought together an award-winning and highly reputable team. Chris von Pohlot is a fintech entrepreneur with a background in alternative financing, he holds a degree from Columbia University. Kevin Quinn was previously a PhD student in Computer Science at the University of Washington, going on to lead engineering teams at Google. Kamal Obbad, a Harvard graduate who led product and engineering teams at Google and currently serves as head of research for xSigma. He was featured in Forbes 30 under 30. Aiding them in underwriting is Steven Hunter, a 20-year veteran in the MCA industry who has trained numerous shops and underwritten over 70,000 successful loans. 

The Chairman of the Company, Mr. Jiancong Huang, states, "I am excited to be partnering with the experienced team at Altbanc with the plans of launching a fixed income digital token offering during a time where we are seeing the cryptocurrency markets hitting all-time highs and where we are witnessing Coinbase, (NASDAQ:COIN) which is the largest U.S. cryptocurrency exchange being listed on NASDAQ paving the way for the future of cryptocurrencies."

At the time of this release we witnessed the coming of the cryptocurrency industry as follows:

  • Bitcoin hit a record of US$63,769, extending its 2021 rally to new heights a day before the listing of Coinbase shares in the United States.
  • Smaller rival Ethereum also reached a record high of US$2,205.
  • The largest U.S. cryptocurrency exchange's listing on the Nasdaq on Wednesday is considered a landmark victory for cryptocurrency advocates.
  • Bitcoin is the world's biggest cryptocurrency, with growing mainstream acceptance as an investment and a means of payment. It rose as much as 5 per cent on Tuesday.
  • The overall cryptocurrency market capitalization hit an all-time peak of US$2-trillion earlier this month, according to data and market trackers CoinGecko and Blockfolio.[1]

[1] https://www.theglobeandmail.com/investing/article-bitcoin-hits-record-high-day-before-coinbase-ipo/ 

About ZK International Group Co., Ltd.

ZK International Group Co., Ltd. is a China-based designer, engineer, manufacturer and supplier of patented high-performance stainless steel and carbon steel pipe products that require sophisticated water or gas pipeline systems. The Company owns 28 patents, 21 trademarks, 2 Technical Achievement Awards, and 10 National and Industry Standard Awards. ZK International is preparing to capitalize on the $850 Billion commitment made by the Chinese Government to improve the quality of water, which in its current supply state is 70% unfit for human contact.  ZK International is Quality Management System Certified (ISO9001), Environmental Management System Certified (ISO1401), and a National Industrial Stainless Steel Production Licensee that is focused on supplying steel piping for the multi-billion dollar industries of Gas and Water sectors.  ZK has supplied stainless steel pipelines for over 2,000 projects, which include the Beijing National Airport, the "Water Cube" and "Bird's Nest", which were venues for the 2008 Beijing Olympics.  Emphasizing superior properties and durability of its steel piping, ZK International is providing a solution for the delivery of high quality, highly sustainable, environmentally sound drinkable water to not only to the China market but to international markets such as Europe, East Asia and Southeast Asia.  

For more information please visit www.ZKInternationalGroup.com. Additionally, please follow the Company on TwitterFacebookYouTube, and Weibo. For further information on the Company's SEC filings please visit www.sec.gov.

About Altbanc

Altbanc is a financial technology platform that provides alternative lending products to B2B small-and-medium sized businesses. Altbanc's first product focuses on refinancing merchant cash advances (MCAs) into longer-term and sustainable loans. Their mission is to provide investors with access to distressed debt opportunities that provide predictable returns and less uncertainty than market-based investing. The company's technology streamlines underwriting and provides a low-friction experience for borrowers. For more information: www.altbanc.us

Safe Harbor Statement 

This news release contains forward-looking statements within the meaning of Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933, as amended, and Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended, and as defined in the U.S. Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Without limiting the generality of the foregoing, words such as "may," "will," "expect," "believe," "anticipate," "intend," "could," "estimate" or "continue" or the negative or other variations thereof or comparable terminology are intended to identify forward-looking statements. In addition, any statements that refer to expectations, projections or other characterizations of future events or circumstances are forward-looking statements. These forward-looking statements are not guarantees of future performance and are subject to certain risks, uncertainties and assumptions that are difficult to predict and many of which are beyond the control of ZK International.  Actual results may differ from those projected in the forward-looking statements due to risks and uncertainties, as well as other risk factors that are included in the Company's filings with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. Although ZK International believes that the assumptions underlying the forward-looking statements are reasonable, any of the assumptions could prove inaccurate and, therefore, there can be no assurance that the results contemplated in forward-looking statements will be realized.  In light of the significant uncertainties inherent in the forward-looking information included herein, the inclusion of such information should not be regarded as a representation by ZK International or any other person that their objectives or plans will be achieved. ZK International does not undertake any obligation to revise the forward-looking statements contained herein to reflect events or circumstances after the date hereof or to reflect the occurrence of unanticipated events.

Investor Contact:

Sherry Zheng
Weitian Group LLC
Email: shunyu.zheng@weitian-ir.com
Phone: +1 718-213-7386

(PRNewsfoto/ZK International Group Co., Ltd.)

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SOURCE ZK International Group Co., Ltd.

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