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Initial Coin Offerings (ICOs)

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Initial Coin Offerings (ICOs) History
Initial Coin Offerings (ICOs) are a means of fundraising for the initial capital needed to get new projects off the ground within the cryptocurrency ecosystem. More often than not, Bitcoin and Ethereum, are used to buy a quantity of project tokens. However, new projects are also being launched on alternative Blockchain platforms such as NEO or WANchain, wherein the “parent” chain’s tokens will be used to fund these ICOs. Pre-launch, ICO tokens are endorsed as functional currency in the project ecosystem. After a project’s ICO, it is available on exchanges, and then the market determines the value of those tokens. The main benefit of using the ICO funding system is that it avoids the prohibitive amount of time and expense incurred by launching a startup in the conventional method, by way of Initial Public Offering (IPO). The lengthy and costly process of ensuring regulatory compliance in different jurisdictions often makes the IPO format unfeasible for small companies. Thus, the ICO method of fundraising is far more attractive as a means of crowd funding for the project. But at the same time, an ICO is certainly riskier for the investor.
It is important to note the different stages of the token sale. Token prices generally escalate the closer the token gets to its listing date. Projects often seek funding from angel investors even before the date of the private pre-sale is set, though some ICOs do go straight to pre-sale. After potential initial investment has been sought from angel investors, pre-sale begins. Usually there will be a 15–30% discount from the public sale price. The main-sale begins after the pre-sale has concluded. At that time, normal everyday crypto enthusiasts, with no connections to the team, may buy into the project at pretty close to the ground floor price. Angel investors and pre-sale investors sometimes receive quite large discounts from main sale prices, but their tokens are locked up for varying amounts of time, to prevent dumping, or selling all their tokens for a quick profit at the time of listing. Today the vast majority of ICOs make use of the Ethereum blockchain and the ERC-20 token. The very first token sale was arranged by Mastercoin, a Bitcoin fork, in July 2013. Ethereum soon followed in early 2014, raising 3700 BTC in only 12 hours (equivalent to $2.3 million at that time, and just under $35 million today). Before late 2015 there were sporadic ICOs, with Augur, NXT and Factom all successfully raising funds. 2016 was the year that the ICO format grew to truly disrupt the Venture Capital industry. There were 64 ICOs in 2016 which cumulatively raised $103 million USD.
Tremendous Success & Why Real World Case Study
The ICON (ICX) Initial coin offering is an example of a project that reaped the rewards of a token sale done with precision of execution and clarity of vision. The project promised to build a world-wide decentralized network that would allow Blockchains of different governances to transact with one another without a centralized authority, and with as few barriers as possible. ICX offered fair and clear tokenomics, with 1 Ether buying 2500 ICX, and with 1 ETH costing approximately 250 dollars when the ICO began on September 18th. 50% of the total amount of tokens were put up for public sale, 400,230,000 out of a total of 800,460,000, equating to a fundraising goal of 150,000 Ether. One of the core reasons for the project’s spectacular success was the incredibly distinguished background of those involved, and the foundation the project had in many years of stellar achievement. ICON was originally a project developed by “The Loop”, a joint venture between DAYLI financial group and three Korean Universities. They lead the Korea Financial Investment Blockchain Consortium, one of the largest organizations of its kind in the world, boasting members including Samsung Securities. The Loop had already implemented Blockchain solutions for high profile clients well before ICX was born, including completing a KYC/AML authentication smart contract platform for Korea Financial Investment Consortium.
Real World Example of Failure & Why Case Study
The risk involved in starting your own company is huge. Over 75% of startups eventually fail, according to the Harvard Business School study by Shikhar Ghosh. The study’s findings show the rate of failure for new companies is roughly 50% after 5 years, and over 75% after 10. Shikhar Ghosh identifies the following issues as the most common factors in start-up failure: -Insufficient Market Demand -Insolvency -Wrong Team -Got beat by competition -Pricing/Cost issues -Poor Product -Need for or Lack of business model -Ineffective Marketing -Disregarding Customer desires The statistics concerning rate of failure for conventional business startups pale in comparison to the number of crypto startups that fail according to Tokendata. They are one of the most rigorous ICO trackers, recording 46% of the 902 ICO crowdsale projects initiated in 2017 as failing by the time of writing. Of these 46%, 142 collapsed before the end of the funding stage, and a further 276 had either “exit scammed” (took the money and ran) or slowly faded into eventual obscurity. With no shortage of failed and abortive projects to look into, we thought it would be more helpful to look into an ICO that was mismanaged and unsuccessful in terms of its execution, rather than being fraudulent, or terminally mismanaged.
Real World Example of Failure & Why §3
Tezos was designed as a “new decentralized Blockchain that governs itself by establishing a true digital commonwealth”. The project was a partnership between the husband and wife team of Kathleen and Arthur Breitman, and a Swiss foundation run by Johann Gevers. They had a novel idea of “formal verification”, a technique that mathematically proves the veracity of code governing transactions and heightens security of smart contracts. That idea was wholeheartedly endorsed by investors, resulting in $232 million USD raised in the 2017 crowdsale. Trouble arose after the Breitmans asked the head of the Swiss foundation they were in partnership with to step down. In Gever’s words, the Breitman’s were attempting “to bypass Swiss legal structure and take over control of the foundation”. The resulting 6 class action lawsuits that were spawned from the wreckage of one of the most successful ICOs of all time have yet to be fully resolved at the time of writing, though Gevers has stepped down and a new leadership team is in place. The Tezos Network has a prospective launch date of somewhere around Q3 2018. The debacle, though not terminal to the prospects of the Tezos network, provides a cautionary tale about the need for a clearly defined leadership structure and plan for the allocation of funds after an ICO. It is entirely possible that the Tezos project could have ridden the late 2017 market euphoria to sit near the top of the cryptocurrency hierarchy if boardroom strife could have been avoided.
Real World Example of Failure & Why §4
Projects often also “pivot” from one focus or project to another. More often than not, teams change the project name entirely, even while retaining the same core team, to try for a successful venture one more time. One such project is Chain Trade Token (CTT) which, while technically speaking, not yet a “deadcoin”, shows all the signs of shutting down operations within a few months, and “pivoting” into a new project. The CTT project aimed to be the “first blockchain-based platform for the trading of futures and options on food and raw materials (aka commodity derivatives)”. But through a combination of a non-existent social media presence, and a distinct lack of urgency in securing listings beyond decentralized exchanges, the lofty ambitions of the top-level team were left unrealized. The team has supposedly split their operations from solely Chain Trade, to a former business endeavors, and the Nebula Decentralized Exchange. The project leaders then offered a 1-for-1 token swap which has been accepted by the vast majority of CTT holders.
The ICO Process
Before even researching the particular strengths and weaknesses of any specific project in which you may want to invest, it is important to know the overall processes of the ICO crowdfunding method. This will allow you to avoid any potential pitfalls if you do decide to move forward and invest money into a particular idea or project. How does an ICO happen? Stage One: Token sale details are set: This takes place usually after release of the whitepaper, and the presentation of a project to prospective investors in forums and on social media. Stage Two: Whitelisting for private sale begins: The vast majority of all ICOs have instituted KYC checks for investors which usually involve uploading a photograph of your passport or driving license along with a selfie holding the ID. Did you know? Participation in ICOs has proven to be a regulatory nightmare in some localities. Most token sales restrict contributions from investors in China and the USA entirely, though accredited investors may participate in the USA in some cases.
Stage Three: Private/Pre-sale states: Typically, 10% of tokens will be offered to early investors at a 10–30% discount. These select few investors will likely have a close association with the team. But not all projects have a pre-sale round, some go straight to public sale. Stage Four: Whitelisting for Public/Main sale starts: The same format used for pre-sale investors is used for public sale investors, though it is a regular occurrence to see main sale KYC checks closed early due to overwhelming demand. An investor must then register a contribution wallet address. That is the address used to send cryptocurrency from, to buy the ICO tokens, and then also into which you will receive your purchased tokens. This wallet address must be a non-exchange wallet, like Blockchain.info bitcoin wallet, or MyEtherWallet for ERC-20. You already understand from the prior lesson that making a mistake with your wallet address may mean you lose the tokens forever as well as the BTC or ETH you used to purchase them. Copying and pasting your cryptocurrency public key into the whitelist wallet form is the next task to complete. And then, as the investor, you wait for confirmation of successful ICO registration from the team.
Stage Five: Public sale starts: Commonly on a specific date, though sometimes for a specific period of time. If you are interested in participating in an ICO, it is important to make your contribution as quickly as possible, or you risk sending your ETH or BTC after the hard cap has been reached, resulting in your funds being sent back. This refund can sometimes take many days, or even weeks in times of high market activity. Did you know? In 2017 it was not unheard of to find ICOs that had originally scheduled their ICO period for many weeks, but then they met with such high demand that they could close their crowdsale in a matter of hours or even in just a few minutes!
Stage Six: Tokens are allocated to successful participant investor wallets, and trading can begin on some decentralized exchanges like IDEX, or EtherDelta in the case of Ethereum based tokens. Tokens will be sent to and received by the wallet addresses from which the investor contributions were made. Stage Seven: Tokens are listed on mainstream exchanges: The tokens will then be listed on the exchanges with which the teams have negotiated listing, prior to or during the sale. It can cost huge amounts of money to list on large exchanges like Bitfinex Bittrex, Huobi or Binance, so usually smaller projects will not be listed on top 10 exchanges so quickly. As tokens are listed on more and more exchanges, their price usually rises because more and more investors are exposed to opportunities to buy that particular token.
Evaluating a Blockchain Use Case
Evaluating a particular use case for Blockchain technology, and thus how successful an ICO project’s ambitions might be in a particular market, is not a simple endeavor. As demonstrated in the graphic below, Blockchain technology has nearly limitless potential to be applied to a great variety of business areas, but as an ICO investor, you are looking for projects that have the potential to deliver significant long-term success. In the currently saturated ICO environment, some use cases have more potential than others. Ascertaining which use case is likely to have long term success is a key distinction. Also, we must recognize that businesses and corporate entities may be overeager to experiment with this new Blockchain technology, whether or not usage of the technology is actually advisable or profitable for their particular purpose. The main questions to ask when analyzing specific solutions proposed by the project are: What are the problems posed and the solutions offered? Does this particular area of business need a Blockchain solution? That is, is a Blockchain solution in fact superior to the current way this particular business operates? Is the use of Blockchain in this specific instance feasible and applicable? What are competitors doing about Blockchain projects in this same area?
A Blockchain network provides a shared, replicated, secured, immutable and verifiable data ledger. The implication for use case analysis: Shared and replicated: participants have a copy of the ledger and many people can view it or work on it Secured: Secured through cryptography Verifiable: Business rules are associated with all interactions that occur on the network Immutable: Transactions (records) cannot be modified or deleted, therefore a verifiable audit trail is maintained by the network So, with all this considered, what should we look for with regard to a possible business use case that would be best solved using Blockchain technology? 1. Data exchange that has trust issues i.e. businesses transacting with one another. Trust must be established through a multitude of verification processes with regards to employees and products. These processes increase operational cost. Example: Digital voting. 2. Any potential business process involving data storage, or compliance and risk data that get audited. Blockchain solutions would provide the regulators a real-time view of information. Example: Supply chain solutions like VeChain or WaltonChain. The possibility of close to zero operational loss would of course be attractive to any business. 3. All kinds of asset transactions. A Blockchain network, with its tamper-proof ledger, validating traceable and trackable transactions, could save many different industries untold amounts of money. Example: Tokenization of assets e.g. Jibrel Network or Polymath
Purpose of Tokens
Within the cryptocurrency ecosystem, the definition and role of a token iswidely understood. They represent programmable units of currency that sit atop a particular Blockchain, and they are part of a smart contract “logic” specific to a certain application. In the business sphere, a token can be defined as a unit of value that a project or business venture creates to enable it to self-govern. And the business venture also allows token users to connect and collaborate with its business products, while facilitating the sharing of rewards to all of its stakeholders. A token can also be described in a more general sense as a type of privately issued currency. In the past it was solely within the purview of governments to issue currency and set the terms of its governance. With the advent of Blockchain technology we now have businesses and organizations offering forms of digital money over which they, not the government or central bank, have control of the terms of operations and issuance. Wide scale adoption of these mechanisms could fundamentally alter the global economy. This is like the creation of self-sustaining, mini-economies in any sector of business or life, via a specific token or currency.
Fun Fact: Tokens of the particular Blockchain upon which the project is launched will usually have to be bought in order to be exchanged for ICO tokens, hence it is important for traders and investors to be aware of the schedule for upcoming ICOs. ETH is usually the token used for exchange because the majority of ICOs launch on the Ethereum Blockchain. But this is not always the case. During January 2018, two NEO token ICOs, both the Key TKY and Ontology ICOs, were being carried out, and this caused the NEO cryptocurrency to spike to its all-time high in excess of $160 USD. Since the product or project is more often than not in its embryonic stage at the time of the ICO crowdfunding process, the ICO token’s true function and purpose is in most cases yet to be realized. At the ICO stage the tokens can usually be grouped together into one of three categories. Knowing how to distinguish these categories involves determining the specific nature and function of the token around which the project is centered. The main and crucial distinction, is whether or not a token is a security, and therefore subject to securities registration requirements.
ICO Stage Token Categories
Howey Test: This is the test created by the US Supreme Court to ascertain whether certain transactions qualify as “investment contracts”. If they are found to fall within this classification, then under the Securities Act of 1933 and the Exchange Act of 1934, those transactions are considered “securities” and participants must adhere to registration and disclosure requirements. One of the most important and amazing considerations of the effect of Blockchain technology is that normal people with a computer science background are now empowered to make decisions and offer products and services that previously only licensed financial institutions were able to do. This is a very complex and complicated situation with serious ramifications for anyone involved. One thing to note well is that ordinary participants and actors in this arena can easily commit white-collar crime, violating serious securities laws, without even realizing it. If a token falls within the US legal definition of “Investment Contract” then you must adhere to US regulations. For that reason, many ICOs simply do not want to sell to US based investors, perhaps until all the rules and regulations are clarified.
Security Tokens
The broad and varying definition of the term “security” is a regulatory minefield. This has always been true for traditional financial products, and now it is especially true for the as yet unregulated cryptocurrency market. In the case of SEC V. Howey, parameters were established to determine whether or not a particular financial arrangement could be classified as a security and thus be subject to securities regulations. Cooley LLP Fintech Team Leader Marco Santori has said, an arrangement is a security if it involves “an investment of money, and a common enterprise, with the expectation of profit, primarily from the efforts of others.” Investors have the option of accessing a huge range of security tokens through ICOs. Prime examples are the gold backed DigixDao (DGD) and CProp (still in crowd funding stage). A security token is fundamentally different from the currently available ICO project tokens in that it provides a legal and enforceable ownership of a company’s profits and voice in its governance much like common stock traded on any exchange. If security tokens are the next step in the evolution of crypto-finance, real estate, stocks, venture capital, and commodities can all be tokenized. The traditional markets could be fully connected to the Blockchain. Financial assets would available to anyone in the world, not just licensed or accredited investors. That is one aspect of Fintech, the financial revolution taking place today, as Blockchain technology clashes with traditional finance.
Equity Tokens
One exciting application of smart contracts on the Ethereum Network is the potential for startups to distribute equity tokens through initial coin offerings. That would reduce the hurdles that an average person has to face in order to take part in the early stages of a company’s development. And, democratic governance of a project could be conducted in a transparent manner through voting on the Blockchain. As of yet, few startups have attempted to conduct equity token sales for fear of falling afoul of the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) in the US. But many Venture Capital insiders are bullish on the prospect of equity tokens taking a central role in the crypto finance industry, when and as the legal issues are resolved. For example, the Delaware State legislature recently passed a bill enabling companies to maintain shareholder lists on the Blockchain. That is one major step to enable Blockchain based stock trading. Lawyers also generally believe it is only a matter of time before the regulations are clarified. Did you know? Important consideration: The Sarbanes-Oxley Act of 2002 made it unfeasibly expensive for smaller companies to be listed on exchanges, causing a halving in the number of IPOs between 1996 and 2016 (7322 to 3671). In 2017 there was an almost 5-fold increase in the number of ICOs, from 43 to 210, with the 2017 volume already being eclipsed in the first 5 months of 2018.
Utility Tokens
However, given that this area is still a regulatory nightmare for people planning to issue security and equity tokens, many projects attempt to ensure that the tokens within their specific model fall under the definition of Utility Tokens rather than securities, so as to avoid the SEC regulations altogether. If a token is imbued with a certain functionality and use within the Blockchain infrastructure of that particular project, the token can avoid being labelled as a security, and thus render SEC regulations inapplicable. Just this week in fact, the SEC made the long-awaited and momentous decision that Ether was not a security. In the words of William Hinman, director of the Securities and Exchange Commission division of corporate finance, “Putting aside the fundraising that accompanied the creation of Ether, based on my understanding of the present state of Ether, the Ethereum network and its decentralized structure, current offers and sales of Ether are not securities transactions.” This means that Ethereum, in fact, fails the Howey test, which is exactly the decision the crypto world wanted. Hinman said, “When the efforts of the third party are no longer a key factor for determining the enterprise’s success, material information asymmetries recede,” Hinman said. “The ability to identify an issuer or promoter to make the requisite disclosures becomes difficult, and less meaningful.” We will now cover various use cases that projects have been adopting up to now in order to get their tokens classified as utility tokens rather than securities.
Voting Rights
Some coins portray themselves as a company with tokens being held in a way that is analogous to voting shares of a stock. One coin held is equal to one vote. This form of token utility has a major flaw in that so-called whales (people with huge amounts of a particular cryptocurrency) can manipulate any poll conducted. The cryptocurrencies Aragon and Lykke are examples of projects that have written voting rights into the structure of their code. In-App Reward: Another common tactic to evade the security label has been the addition of in-app rewards to the functionality of a particular token. The Basic Attention Token (BAT) is the unit of currency for use with the project browser named “Brave”. The BAT is a unit of account for the advertisers, publishers and users of the platform. Filecoin, the cloud storage project that raised a record $257 million through their ICO, pays other people or companies for use of their spare storage space. Some of the many rights afforded to token holders in various Blockchain projects are described by the graphic below.
Token Roles Function
The token can be used as a mechanism through which user experience is enhanced, enabling such actions as connection with users, or joining a broader network. It may also be used as an incentive for beginning usage or for on-boarding. Examples include Dfinity and Steemit. Value Exchange: In its most basic usage, a token is a unit of value exchange within a specific app or market. This usually is made up of features that allow users to earn tokens through real work or passive work (sharing data, allowing use of storage space) and to spend them on services or internal functions within the specific market ecosystem created by that organization. Augur and KIK, amongst countless others, are projects that have implemented this functionality into their tokenomics. Toll: The token can also be used for getting onto the Blockchain infrastructure, or for powering decentralized applications run on that particular Blockchain. This ensures that users have “skin in the game”. Tolls can be derived from running smart contracts, paying a security deposit, or just usage fees. Examples include Bitcoin and Ethereum. Currency: Seeing as the particular platform or app is designed with a view towards functioning in synergy with a particular token, the token is an extremely efficient means of payment and transaction engine, resulting in frictionless transactions. This means that companies can become their own payment processors and no longer have to rely on the often unwieldy stages of conventional financial settlement involving trusted third parties in the form of banks and credit card companies.
Rights: Owning a token bequests certain rights upon the holder, such as product usage, voting, access to restricted markets, and dividends (e.g.: GAS for holding NEO). Though most businesses are trying to avoid fitting the definition of a security laid out in the Howey Test, the right to real ownership of a particular asset is sometimes granted as a result of holding a token, for example DigixDAO or Tezos.
Comparison to Traditional IPO and Equity Capital Raisings
Despite the similarity of the acronyms and the derivation of one from the other, Initial Coin Offerings and Initial Public Offerings are very different methods of fundraising. The distinction is not limited simply to the fact that IPOs are used in conventional business, and ICOs are associated with cryptocurrency. Through ICO’s, companies in their early stages issue digital tokens on a Blockchain and those tokens act as units of value for use within the ecosystem created by the project. They have many other uses, but it is also fair to say they are analogous to shares offered in an Initial Public offering.
In an IPO, shareholdings are distributed to investors through underwriters, usually investment banks. But in the case of ICO token sales, companies often do not even have an actual product to show. Often, all that there is a whitepaper, evidence of the partnerships involved and the particular social-media infrastructure they have established. IPO’s take place when a more well-established company floats shares on a stock exchange. The company would have a well-established history of success and significant reasons to expect a bright future. In the vast majority of cases, an ICO is used for a new company with no such history, just trying to get off the ground.
Another important difference is the expected return in exchange for the investment. Companies engaging in IPOs may offer participants dividend paying stocks which result in various levels of return depending on the success of the company after the shares are issued. An ICO however can offer no such guaranteed return. When buying tokens in an ICO, you do so with no promise of return. An investor who holds the tokens of a particular project does so with the promise, rather than an assurance, of future success. The main benefit to investors taking part in Initial Coin Offerings, compared to Initial Public Offerings, is the need for only basic Know Your Customer checks in the case of the ICO, compared to the costly, complex and time-consuming regulatory obstacles that must be traversed in an IPO. In the case of Initial Public Offerings, a business must obtain authorization from a number of entities before the act of “going public”. Prior to an IPO, companies are not obliged to disclose so much of their internal records or accounting. It is not so complicated to make a private company in the United States. But in the run up to going public, the company must form a board of directors, make their records auditable to the relevant authorities in one or more jurisdictions, and prepare to make quarterly reports to the SEC (or equivalent).
Relevant Factors to Consider in ICO process
When analyzing the chances of success for a specific project, and the likelihood of a favorable return on investment in the long term, it is essential to break down the project into its constituent parts, and evaluate the strengths and weaknesses of each part individually. An effective investigation and analysis would start with the team and white paper. Consider the stage the project is at,and VC investments in the project. That would lead to a good initial idea of the actual progress thus far. Next, evaluate the social media presence and the credentials of the community that has formed around the core team. If a compelling case is made by the team, (e.g.: via an in-depth dive into the use case), and the tokenomics, distribution schedule, potential competitors, as well as the team’s awareness of any future business or regulatory concerns all check out; then the ICO might present a good opportunity for investment. In the following slides we tackle each of these considerations in order so you will be able to evaluate an ICO’s worth and assign a grade for the success of each project.
Relevant Factors to Consider in ICO process
The Team First and most important, we need evaluate the background and experience of the team, the people involved in the project. Well-established developers, for example, will likely have LinkedIn profiles demonstrating their previous endeavors and occupations, from which we can judge their suitability to the project and the likelihood of the team’s success. The LinkedIn profile is a point of reference for professional accomplishments and official positions. But we can also learn more about a person from their personal accounts on Twitter, Facebook, and Medium etc. That is also a good way to follow along with the progress of the project. By investigating team members through as many means as possible, you will know how long they have been involved in cryptocurrency. If they have been around and active for a long time, they are that much more likely to be knowledgeable and capable of making better quality decisions in this business. It goes without saying that it is a huge red flag if it is too difficult to find information about the team members online, and worse still if the team members are anonymous.
Relevant Factors to Consider in ICO process
A good Whitepaper gives a detailed description of the project, the problems the team is going to solve, the timeframe projected, and methods to be used in the implementation of their ideas. If, in answering the question about what the project actually does, it seems the team is presenting ideas that are too complicated or advanced to understand, then you simply should not invest until you are satisfied you have been given the requisite level of insight to understand the concepts described. It is always possible that the whitepaper is nothing more than a salad of buzzwords and technical language intended to give the impression of competence while really doing nothing but obfuscate the truth. The whitepaper should clearly and concisely present the problems and the solutions needed. The whitepaper must give a solid and coherent answer as to who needs this project and why. Also, if the team have put no effort into explaining why a Blockchain solution is needed for this particular problem, or why such a solution is superior to its “real-world” equivalent, it is likely they are only in it for the money. We have more to say about red-flags later.
While 2016 raised a comparatively small amount in comparison to the proceeding years, there were a few specific projects that raised significant amounts of capital. These are respectable amounts of money, even by today’s standards, and especially impressive when contrasted with the immaturity of the ICO market at the time, and relative to amounts raised in traditional IPOs. Waves ($16.4mill), Iconomi ($10.6mill) and Golem ($8.6mill) were the three largest fundraisings of the year. 2017 was the year of the ICO whales. Hdac ($258mill), Filecoin ($257mill), EOS Stage 1 ($185mill) and Paragon ($183.16mill) were the largest that year. To be able to raise so much money, so quickly, in such a new market, using such a new mechanism is truly incredible. 2017 was the year that proved ICOs are for serious individuals and institutional investors as well. We have also had some phenomenal amounts raised so far in 2018. Telegram ($1.7bill), Dragon ($320mill), Huobi ($300mill) and Bankera ($150mill). Telegram might be the first mainstream example of an ICO, not only by raising close to $2billion, which would be beyond incredible and impressive even by traditional IPO standards; but also, because it is one of the first ICO companies to tangibly put a product in the hands of hundreds of millions of users, and successfully compete against traditional companies such as Facebook (MessengeWhatsApp), Microsoft (Skype) and Tencent (WeChat).
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General info and list of exchanges for BUBBLETONE

We directly connect mobile network operators and end users globally on our blockchain-based marketplace. With Bubble Tone Blockchain, travelers can swiftly become legitimate local customers of any foreign operator in the country they are traveling to. They dont need to replace their SIM card, and they retain their home number. Travelers - Make calls and use data during travel worldwide at great local rates with direct connection to local operators - No need to change your SIM-card or phone number - Next generation messenger packed with amazing communication features User’s Interface part A brief demonstration how subscribers can be connected with local rates and LTE quality around the world. Operators and service providers - Any operator can become global without complex network integrations - Direct access to international telecom market with millions of new customers - Increase in revenue through distribution of value-added services Blockchain Telecom part Live demonstration of mobile carriers' interconnection via Blockchain. New Offers and Requests are created and broadcasted in real-time mode, and a new mobile profile was downloaded onto SIM-card of a subscriber. Bubbletone project consists of two main parts: Blockchain and Mobile App Bubbletone Blockchain Bubbletone replaces old-fashioned and costly roaming technology by implementing smart contracts into mobile operators' interactions. 1 Visited operator 1 Visited operator Any mobile operator can publish its own tariff plans as smart contracts ("Offers"). These Offers are visible to all operators and their subscribers Blockchain Subscriber 2 Request for mobile services abroad Home operator 3 Smart-contract ("Request") with Digital Identity hash and Financial Transaction Blockchain 4 It's enough to execute the smart-contract to receive money and identify a visitor 5 Servicing the subscriber directly by downloading its own mobile profile onto a SIM-card "over-the-air” Any mobile carrier can publish prepaid plans as smart contracts on Bubbletone Blockchain. These offers are visible to all other operators and their subscribers. When subscriber selects offer, a new smart contract is created with the subscribers digital identity and payment transaction directly to foreign operator. Sim card registered in the local mobile network Subscriber is authorized Payment is processed Service is provided Billing is transparent Tariffs are local Zero costs for operator Quality LTE / LTE+ Quick launch for operator Bubbletone GitHub Bubbletone Yellow pager Blockchain in Telecom Wiki Why big operators will join Bubbletone? Read on Medium Bubbletone App Direct connection to a local operator provides low rates and high LTE quality, with easy management using Bubbletone mobile app BETA version is already availabe in: Google PlayApp Store Marketplace connecting subscribers and local network operators globally Keeping domestic phone number during foreign trips Conference video and audio calls SMS in future - send a date and text for your SMS Burning messages Buy, keep and use domestic phone numbers in different countries 100+ other communication features Who we are: 20 years of experience in Telecom Industry Allo Incognito - our own medium-sized mobile operator in Russia since 2002 Allo Incognito Website 240k+ Premium Subscribers 42m USD Annual revenue 10k POS Bubbletone is trending
UMT Tokens 22% Network Development Fund 220 000 000 UMT 50% Crowdsale 500 000 000 UMT 20% Founders 200 000 000 UMT 7.8% Team & Community Development Fund 78 000 000 UMT 0.2% Bounty fund 2 000 000 UMT Name: UMT Type: ERC-20 Function: Used in smart contracts to perform transactions. Can be used to top up user balance to pay for telecom services Total Supply: 1 000 000 000 tokens For sale: 50% All unsold tokens will be burnt and additional release of tokens will not be possible! Checked by clearify Bubbletone ICO 01.02 10.02 Stage 1 10.02 01.03 Stage 2 02.03 10.03 Stage 3 20.04 15.06 ICO Stage ICO ETH/UMT 1 ETH = 4000 UMT Vesting No vesting Minimum 0.1 ETH ICO starts: 20.04.18, 10AM (London time) Token price: 1 ETH = 4000 UMT Hard cap: 15 000 000 USD Accepted currencies: ETH, BTC Join White List to reserve your UMT Tokens JOIN WHITE LIST Our Team Key Team
Yury Morozov CEO and Founder Co-founder of 4 active telecom companies
Oleg Pravdin CTO Telecom visionary, founder of 3 start-ups in the USA, China and Russia.
Irina Chertok Co-founder and Major Chief Board Director
Sergei Ivanov CEO of "Allo Incognito" (mobile virtual network operator)
Sergey Malcev Lead Blockchain Software Engineer
Sergey Baloyan CMO and Head of IR
Fedor Rozhnov CBDO Strategic Developer for Telco, Realized 2 MVNO-projects for Russian mobile market
Kirill Maskaev CCO and Head of PR
Maria Voronova Project Manager
Stepan Gershuni Blockchain expert, co-founder @Block Notary
Sergey Sevantsyan Blockchain expert, public speaker Developers and IT engineers team
Michael Nazarenko Lead security and fault tolerance developer
Sergey Prilutskiy Security expert, Blockchain architecture development
Sergey Lepenkov Development of payment services and high-load applications in the telecommunication field
Oleg Vintovkin Development of IT project Yandex Telephony; development BSS & OSS for mobile carriers
Yury Vasilchikov Blockchain consultant, smart contracts developer
Alexander Artemiev Bubbletone messenger architecture development, integration with mobile carriers
Jackov Mayurov Bubbletone messenger project manager
Ajmat Iqbal Bubbletone messenger software development leader
Mir Monsoor Hossain Senior software developer
Momi Monjil Ara Senior software developer
Khandaker Raihan Hossain Senior software developer
Md. Shafiqul Islam Front-end software developer
Md Maniruzzaman Back-end software developer
Alexey Makeev Smart contracts software engineer
Varun Reddy Community Relations
Mariana Bugaeva Head of design group
Advisors
Keith Teare Successful serial technology entrepreneur; Executive Chair at Accelerated Digital Ventures; TechCrunch founding shareholder and EasyNet, Europe’s first consumer Internet Service Provider
Dr. Norman Lewis Telecom expert Norman was running PWC’s innovation programme, He also worked in Orange UK as a Director of Technology Research, Founding Director of Future-Diagnosis, Executive board member of the MIT Communications Futures Programme.
Anders Larsson Anders worked in Ericsson Group for two decades to create the emerging technologies of 2G, 3G, 4G, 5G and IOT in 10 different countries Held various CTO roles and the role of Vice President for Mobile Broadband in Southeast Asia & Oceania AllcoinWiki Co-founder Top-5 Blockchain Advisor in the world
Samson Lee Founder & CEO of CoinStreet; Executive Chairman of China (Guangdong, Hong Kong, Macau) Greater Bay Area TechFin Association; Co-founder of Hong Kong Blockchain Centre; Co-Founder of Ethereum south China and south Asia communities; Chief Crypto-economic Advisor of Gibraltar Blockchain Exchange; Advisor of Universa.io; Asia President of Next.TV Inc. and Chairman of STM Digital Group.
Joakim Holmer Joakim is a telecom expert, who had experience in AT&T and Ericsson Group. 15 years in various technical leadership positions around the world. Joakim has also worked with Software System Sales. With hunger to develop that included everything from Mobile App start-ups to RedHat, SAP and Cisco. AllcoinWiki co-founder
John Mun Co-Founder of Linker Coin; John obtained his MFE at UC Berkeley, then became a Market Maker, HFT trader and General Manager at one of South Korea's leading investment institutions Woori Investments and Securities. John’s finance and engineering background supported him strongly in the blockchain industry and now is also an expert in Smart Contract development.
Gabriel Zanko Fintech entrepreneur-Advisor. Founder of MobileyourLife and involved in the AI-Fintech space providing solutions in the B2B space. ICO advisory in Fundraising Capital and International Business Development.
Professor Jin Song Dong Director of the Institute for Integrated Intelligent System, Griffith University, Australia
Gilbert A. Darrell Gilbert is founder of Horizon Communications, the innovative provider of decentralized wireless infrastructure. He has 18 years of experience in IT and Telecoms and led multiple projects for Fortune 500 companies, such as Microsoft, Energizer and Siemens.
Vladimir Sirotinskiy CEO of Lingualeo, the market leader in online English language learning. Serial entrepreneur and business consultant
Oleg Khokhlov Adviser & Legal Counsel of ICO
Oleg Khokhlov is Partner with international law firm Goltsblat BLP, the Russian practice of Berwin Leighton Paisner (BLP), headquartered in London.
Oleg was selected by peers for inclusion in The Best Lawyers in Russia 2013-2018 Editions in the field of Banking & Finance Law. He has been also highly recommended for Banking & Finance by IFLR1000 and Legal 500.
Oleg has advised leading ICOs and venture fiat/cryptofunds.
Maria Agranovskaya Blockchain and ICO Legal Expert. Managing Partner of GRAD Attorney Bar (30+ lawyers). Attorney at Law with 20+ years of experience. Working with cryptocurrency since 2010: ICO, trading, funds setup, etc. Over eight years running a multifamily office. Cross-border transactions, investments, asset management, deal and corporate structuring in various jurisdictions. M&A, international taxation Tech and Telecom leaders about Bubbletone Blockchain Roadmap Q1’2018 Initial version of smart contracts is ready.
The first “Offer” and “Request” are on the Blockchain platform. Demonstration of the platform at Mobile World Congress in Barcelona (February’18). Integration with major eSIM platforms to download mobile profiles onto SIM cards
Q2’2018 Web-API for integration of mobile operators and service providers.
Integration of Digital Identity into Bubbletone app. Commercial launch, with “Offers” from 10+ mobile operators are on Blockchain, low rates in 80+ countries.
Q3’2018 Global Mobile Profile approval by International Telecommunication Union.
Update Mini Nodes to participate in processing smart contracts. BubbleTone Blockchain – White Paper Page 25 of 31 New features in the Bubbletone app: Voting platform based on Blockchain, 4K videoconferences, transfer of fiat money and crypto currencies
Q4’2018 Expanding list of mobile operators and service providers connected to Bubbletone Blockchain Ecosystem.
The first 1 million transactions are processed
Q1-Q4’2019 Signing agreements with mobile operators worldwide to activate the Global Mobile Profile.
First prototype of a global SIM-chip to be embedded into mobile devices. Expanding list of mobile operators and service providers connected to the Bubbletone Blockchain Ecosystem. 10 million transactions are processed
Partners
Bubbletone Community around the world Bubbletone Worldwide Tour Past Events May 14-16 TMForum, Nice, France May 14-16 Coindesk Consensus 2018, New York, USA May 2-3 Future Blockchain Summit, Dubai May 1-3 IOTX 2018, Dubai April 26-27 World Blockchain Summit, Moscow, Russia April 23-26 MVNO World Congress, Madrid, Spain April 18-19 Blockchain Expo, London, UK April 17-18 Blockchain Conference, Moscow, Russia April 16-17 World Blockchain Forum, Dubai April 8 Blockchain Tomorrow 21, Seoul, Korea April 4 Blockchain Conference, Berlin, Germany March 28 Blockchain Conference, Tel Aviv, Israel March 22 Tallinn Blockchain Conference, Tallinn, Estonia March 21-22 Cryprocurrency World Expo, Berlin, Germany 26 February - 01 March Mobile World Congress in Barcelona March 10 Crypto Investor Show, London, UK March 7-8 Blockchain Summit Zurich 2018, Zurich, Switzerland March 3-6 D10E Fintech Conference, Seoul, Korea March 2 Bubbletone Meet-Up, Singapore March 1 Blockchain & Bitcoin Conference, Istanbul, Turkey February 23 7th Korea Blockchain Symposium, Seoul February 27-28 Singapore Blockchain Summit 2018, Singapore 25-26 January Cryptoeconomy ICO London 22-24 January London Blockchain Week 2018 14 December Big ICO Roadshow, Moscow, Russia 8 December Crypto Space, Moscow, Russia 29-30 November Blockchain Expo in Santa Clara, California (booth 419) 29-30 November Block Show Asia in Singapore 14-15 November Telecom Conference in London 24-25 October World Blockchain Summit in Dubai 8-12 October GITEX Technology Week in Dubai, Stand E3-6 3-5 October Blockchain Solution Forum in Barcelona, Stand №100 26-27 September Telecom Conference in Singapore 25-26 September World Blockchain Forum in London FAQ How can I buy your tokens? Which cryptocurrencies are accepted? Which wallet should I use to receive tokens? What is the goal of your project? Is your product already working? Do you have a prototype or a beta version? Why do you have a blockchain in your project? How is your system going to expand? What are advantages for Node owners? What are the advantages of BubbleTone messenger? How do I operate all these other Sims on my phone? JOIN US
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