Business 22 February 2018Gerald Fenech
Appetite for ICOs shows no signs of waning
With the jargon of cryptocurrencies continually expanding, the word ICO—or Initial Coin Offering—looms large on the investor’s radar of late. In fact, well over $1.5 billion have been raised in ICOs for January 2018 making this an all-time record after a steady increase in 2017, with the largest amount raised was in December when just over $1.2 billion were committed to ICOs. February also seems to have been a rather good month so far with $413 million already raised and there seem to be more waiting in the pipeline.
Data published by tokendata.com showed that there were a total of 93 ICOs so far in 2018 with a total of $1,971 million raised, certainly an impressive number so far with less than two months of the year out. Average pre-sale capital varies between 57 and 67% showing an exceptional high interest from investors. The returns are also very good with the average pre-sale bonus varying from 25 to 34%.
Tokens pre-sales have continued to grow and the take-up rate is also impressive. What is also interesting is that there is a wide variety of topics with ICOs ranging from security systems to gaming companies. Although the rate of return seems to be far smaller than that in 2017, it is still attractive for those who wish to make quick capital gains. As everyone knows, the cryptocurrency sector is extremely volatile so it remains rather unclear which will succeed in the long run.
One of the most controversial ICOs so far has been the one where the encrypted messaging service Telegram is concerned. Over the past few months, the CEO of Telegram convinced 81 accredited investors, including Silicon Valley giants Sequoia Capital and Benchmark, to give him $850 million in a pre-sale of his company’s cryptocurrency in advance of an ICO. Now the company is trying to raise even more money from accredited investors before the coin gets offered to the public in a secretive second pre-sale.
This week, investors got an email explaining that Telegram is doing another private pre-sale, according to sources. The exact amount to be raised is still being determined, one source noted, but two other sources said Telegram is estimating it will be around the same size as the first round, which would bring the total raised to over $1.6 billion before the ICO even opens up to the general public. Telegram’s offering was already the largest ICO ever, dwarfing the previous record of $232 million.
Note: Tokens on the Bitcoin Core (SegWit) chain are referenced as BTC coins; tokens on the Bitcoin Cash ABC chain are referenced as BCH, BCH-ABC or BAB coins.
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