Sulemani (Appellant) Vs Nifty Gateway LLC (Respondent)

Wednesday 27th – Thursday 28th July 2022

By the appellant’s notice filed on 12 April 2022, the claimant appealed the Claire Ambrose QC order dated 24 March 2022 in which it dismissed the claimant’s Clause 17 claim for lack of jurisdiction; In accordance with Section 9 of the Arbitration Act 1996 stayed the proceedings and ordered cost.

Background: The claimant, Mr. Soleimani, is a man living in Liverpool. He describes himself as an entrepreneur, activist and a philanthropist. He also collects fine arts and has collected non-fungible tokens (NFTs) for some time. He has set up a private gallery to display his art collection. Defendant is a limited liability corporation registered with business premises in New York in the state of Delaware. It operates an online platform through which digital assets can be bought and sold. The property can be sold through auction. Users of the platform are also able to buy assets directly from other users. The Claimant participated in an auction held on the Defendant’s online platform between 30 April 2021 and 2 May 2021 and bid for a blockchain-based NFT linked to an artwork by an artist named “Abundance” by the artist Beeple. His claim in these proceedings is for declaratory relief relating to the contractual basis of that partnership.
The issue before the Court was whether the English court should deny the jurisdiction over the claim of the claimant or stay the proceedings. Respondent applied for disputed jurisdiction: a) an order under CPR Part 11 declaring that the Court has no jurisdiction or will not exercise its jurisdiction; or b) an order of stay of proceedings under CPR Part 3.1(2)(f) and/or section 9 of the Arbitration Act 1996.

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Watch the hearing:

first day

part 1

part 2

second day

part 1

part 2

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