ICO MARKET UPDATE :: 24 February – 13 March 2017

Coindesk has published its second spotlight research study on ICOs. Among other topics, the report highlighted increased interest from institutional investors in the space, both on investing and fundraising side. Key statistics from the survey of market participants include:

  • Almost a third (29%) of entrepreneurs without ICO fundraising experience had seriously considered raising with a token sale
  • Nearly all (91%) of investors who had participated in an ICO said they would consider participating in future blockchain token launches

Brock Pierce, Co-Founder and Managing Partner of Blockchain Capital, spoke about current trends in the ICO market at CoinAgenda conference in Puerto Rico on 3–5 March. Brock highlighted his belief that it is critical for the market participants to acknowledge that the majority of tokens currently in circulation are securities, and should be treated accordingly during token offerings. Brock also announced Blockchain Capital’s own plans for a token offering of a liquidity-enhanced venture capital fund that will be issued in compliance with US securities laws. Details on Blockchain Capital’s token offering will be released at vctoken.com.

 Augmentors completed its ICO on 28 February, raising c.$1m from 395 investors with average order size of c.$2.5k. The company is developing an augmented reality creature battle game.

WeTrust ICO has shown some decent momentum, gathering c.$1.7m out of c.$7.6m cap, or 22.4% in the first week. Bonuses amounted to 30% in the first day, 25% in the first week, and then reduce by 5% in every subsequent week. The ICO is expected to be completed on 12 April. The company is building a platform for trusted lending circles.

Peerplays, a decentralized gaming platform, is currently in the market with their ICO and will close on 14 May. The offering is capped at $5m and represents only 16% of total number of tokens, with the rest allocated between undisclosed strategic investors, seed round investors (took place in 2016), team and business development needs. Six-month lock-up applies to strategic investors’ tokens. Given the low percentage subject to the ICO this will definitely be one to watch.

Lykke completed its forward offering, raising CHF 2m and bringing onboard over 340 new investors. The instrument was a 1-year forward equity contract sold at a c.15% discount to market price of the Lykke token. It will be traded on Lykke’s exchange after the three-week settlement period. 

Matchpool, a decentralized dating and matchmaking protocol, commences its ICO on 25 March. Founder and CEO Yonathan Ben Shimon is on the road marketing the offering, having covered Puerto Rico (CoinAgenda), New York (Ethereum meetup) and is planning to travel to China, followed by Japan and Switzerland. Matchpool is expecting to raise up to c.$5m.

Adelphoi postponed the beginning of its ICO from 1 March to 1 May, citing its intention to establish an LLC in Isle of Man and comply with Anti-Money Laundering and Counter-Terrorism Financing legislation. 

Mainstreet postponed its ICO several days into bookbuilding and then ultimately halted the offering, citing technical issues. The way the company handled KYC was confusing to many investors, as well as several structural issues, and we believe that contributed to the offering failing to gain momentum. The ICO only raised tens of thousands in ETH before being halted.

Other deals on the road or launching shortly that we are watching include:

  • Edgeless, a decentralised casino on Ethereum, raised c.$1m in the first week and is closing on 21 March
  • Humaniq, a mobile wallet for the unbanked, postponed its ICO to 6 April citing uncertainty in Chinese crypto markets

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