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ICO Analysis: Aragon

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Blockchain has been a buzz word amongst the mere mortals of the business world for quite some time, especially in the financial sector. Everyone wants to bet on blockchain, everyone wants to integrate it. For a long time, the prospect of Bitcoin, due to a number of factors, among them regulatory and legal issues, was not very attractive, and some were actively vocal: we’ll take the blockchain but we don’t need the Bitcoin, thanks. They were kicking Bitcoin while it was down, of course, and since it has recovered so swimmingly in price over the past dozen months, the “blockchain but not Bitcoin” crowd have quieted down.

Nevertheless, others have also risen on the same tide. Ethereum is trending near $100 each, and its platform is natively intended to support numerous types of applications. In this article we’ll talk about Aragon, an extremely interesting application/platform meant to bring blockchain to every aspect of business management.

As you can see, Aragon is definitely not going to be “vaporware,” which is always a concern when investing in ICOs. Aragon aims to easily allow any business to integrate the blockchain into their accounting, voting process, fundraising, and later, presumably, more.

Built on the well-established Ethereum platform, Aragon isn’t trying to reinvent the wheel like some of the other enterprise-aimed ICOs we’ve discussed recently. Instead, they’re aiming to fill the ease-of-use gap. While they are most certainly not the only play in this arena of allowing any business to go full blockchain, they are one of the more polished. All of this is very positive, but let’s dig a bit deeper into what they’re about, and then get into the details of the token offering and the likelihood of the investor recovering funds.

Aragon is a dApp [decentralized application] that lets anyone create and manage any kind of organization (companies, open source projects, NGOs, foundations, hedge funds…) on the Ethereum blockchain.

Aragon implements basic features of an organization like a cap table, token transfers, voting, role assignments, fundraising, and accounting. The behavior of an Aragon organization is easily customized by changing the bylaws. In addition, Aragon organizations are extensible through third party modules that interact with the organizations’ contracts.

The paper goes on to discuss the various challenges that the designers and developers sought to overcome, all with a mind toward making it easier for everyday businesspeople to make use of the Ethereum blockchain in their organizations. Among these were a mechanism to resolve subjective contract disputes and a bounty system for the resolution of bugs in the software.

Aragon integrates the Keybase protocol to verify the identity of individuals within the ecosystem. This is a great plus in terms of fraud prevention. They expanded on this part of the platform in a blog post, saying:

Even though the premise of doing anonymous business if you want to seems cool, we know it is idealistic and there will be cases in which people will be socially required to prove their identity before some things can happen.

For example, an investor might require the founders to identify themselves before investing in a company or a payment provider might require to do traditional KYC before providing their service to the company.

Overall, the main purpose of the Whitepaper seems to be to explain the purposes of the various features of Aragon, so if you require more information regarding the innards, read it for yourself.

Who is Behind Aragon

Aragon’s page only lists two principal parties. They do, however, credit a number of individuals in their Whitepaper, including Satoshi Nakamoto and Vitalik Buterin (founder of Ethereum). The first principal party is Luis Cuende, who has been listed on the Forbes 30 under 30 (to watch) list. He previously founded the Stampery project, which is one of many blockchain data verification services out there. He’s contributed to or created over 40 repositories on Github. One of them is interesting and unusual: a JavaScript module that creates visuals to go along with Electronic Dance Music. As a person, he seems genuine, motivated, and interesting. In a recent interview, he said:

The biggest takeaway is that we’re truly just getting started. I remember being in Bitcoin conferences years ago and thinking — oh wow, this is growing fast. Or, oh wow, Bitcoin is too expensive these days. But then you think about how revolutionary the crypto movement is, and you realize that we’re still in its baby stage.

For me, the Ethereum ecosystem has been the most welcoming ecosystem ever. And tons of talented developers are joining everyday.

I still love Bitcoin — I think it’s a very good digital gold — but Ethereum is just the perfect tool to decentralize the world. Things that we couldn’t even dream of with Bitcoin are now possible with Ethereum.

Cuende is the “project lead” for Aragon. This means that his responsibilities are among many different categories. In charge of the technology, however, is Jorge Izquierdo.

Izquierdo has made over 1,800 commits on Github in the past year. This is a lot, by any standard, but doesn’t always mean they’re all of substance. One of his projects is called block.chat. It’s an Ethereum-backed messaging platform.

It is meant to be kind of a transport protocol for messages, also having encryption and timestamping built in.

As you can see, both developers are interested in expanding the Ethereum protocol, and Aragon is one more move in that direction. If all things fall into place for them, and it seems they just might, they could be looking at a very successful future as a leader in blockchain-for-business solutions.

Investment Details

The Aragon ICO will begin on May 17th and will run until June 16th. A complete development roadmap is available. The ICO will only be conducted through the Ethereum platform, and more details about how the actual transactions will take place is available here. You can, of course, acquire Ethereum using Bitcoin if you do not already have any.

Although they are doing a bug bounty to find problems in advance of the ICO launch, they have in place a mechanism to stop and restart the ICO if necessary. This would mean that people would get their funds back and would have to invest again if there were some problem. This adds a measure of relief to anyone overly worried. Another thing that is interesting is that they will not have access to the funds at all until the end of the sale.

Going back to the genuineness of the players involved, it seems that transparency is also very important to them, as it is to most cryptocurrency investors and aficionados.

The Verdict

This project is cool. Very cool. Businesses of the future who are looking to integrate the blockchain into their business models will certainly be considering the Aragon platform, for its ease of use and powerful features. The chances of it competing swimmingly in the arena of blockchain-for-business is very high. It’s easy to see more modules being developed for the platform. A moonshot thought is that someone like UPS or FedEx might integrate their own data into the network in order to help businesses track packages as well as to help themselves keep track of them in an immutable way. One assumes these companies already have proprietary solutions in place, but Aragon could be very attractive to them nevertheless, or a big help to competitors for them in less-developed regions.

Given all of the above, including the Forbes recognition of Cuendes, it’s hard to give this thing a lowball rating. The author feels that this would be money well-invested, and so we’re going with a solid 6.5/10 on Aragon ANT tokens. You can check out the contract for ANT here.

Important: Never invest (trade with) money you can't afford to comfortably lose. Always do your own research and due diligence before placing a trade. Read our Terms & Conditions here. Trade recommendations and analysis are written by our analysts which might have different opinions. Read my 6 Golden Steps to Financial Freedom here. Best regards, Jonas Borchgrevink.

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5 stars on average, based on 2 rated postsP. H. Madore has covered the cryptocurrency beat over the course of hundreds of articles for Hacked's sister site, CryptoCoinsNews, as well as some of her competitors. He is a major contributing developer to the Woodcoin project, and has made technical contributions on a number of other cryptocurrency projects. In spare time, he recently began a more personalized, weekly newsletter at http://ico.phm.link




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3 Comments

3 Comments

  1. SlavDaddy

    May 17, 2017 at 9:18 pm

    Fair warning:
    Had big hopes for this ICO- Lost out due to metamask not being able to process ahead of private ETH nodes. Lesson learnt and will not be trying to use metamask for ICO purchases again. To those who did manage to get some. Nice.

    • P. H. Madore

      May 18, 2017 at 4:30 pm

      Well, like I often say, this could be a good thing. The value could drop sharply right after and recover over a long period, giving you opportunities to buy in at an even better price. Sorry you had that problem, though!

  2. embersburnbrightly

    June 6, 2017 at 11:39 pm

    I just bought a bit of this coin two days ago. Just a small amount. I think I might go ahead and buy a bit more, having now read your review.I see a lot of positive things about the approach being used with this coin, and lots of potential for its uses. I won’t break the bank to invest too heavily; but I will certainly buy some more. Thank you.

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Analysis

Crypto Update: Top 10 Worst Performers Make Bottom Picking List

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Yesterday, October 18, 2018, Cryptoglobe published, a list of the 10 worst performing cryptocurrency investments of 2018. These altcoins suffered heavy losses of between 97% – 99%. With tremendous devaluation, it may lead you to think that altcoins or cryptos are dead. After all, other assets such as stocks or commodities may likely never come back to life after losing all but one percent of their value.

But this is crypto where coins nosedive one day and skyrocket the next. Cryptoglobe can show you a picture of tragedy, but us; we see opportunity. In this two-part article, we reveal how the top 10 worst performing cryptocurrency investments can make a good bottom picking list.

Zclassic (ZCL/BTC)

% Down from All-time High:

99%

Current Status:

Zclassic/Bitcoin (ZCL/BTC) is currently finding footing at its historic support level of 0.0005. In the last four weeks, the pair has been range trading between 0.0005 and 0.000074.

Bottom Picking Candidate?

An altcoin that’s down 99% is a great bottom picking candidate. Aside from the possibility of a technical bounce, you can expect whales and expert bottom fishers to accumulate positions at this level. So, you can either trade the range or accumulate with the best of them.

Weekly chart of ZCL/BTC

Game Credits (GAME/BTC)

% Down from All-time High:

98%

Current Status:

GAME/BTC is attempting to carve a bottom at the parabolic support of 0.000025. Over the last four weeks, the pair has been trading between 0.000025 and 0.0000346.

Bottom Picking Candidate?

Yes, GAME/BTC has the potential to generate a strong rally in the coming weeks. Volume spikes on September 23 and October 4 hint that someone is accumulating at these levels. More importantly, the market is flashing oversold readings on the weekly RSI. GAME/BTC has the essential ingredients of a powerful bounce.

Weekly chart of GAME/BTC

Bitcoin Diamond (BCD/BTC)

% Down from All-time High:

97%

Current Status:

BCD/BTC is currently trading inside a huge falling wedge on the daily chart. It is still bearish as it continues to generate lower highs and lower lows.

Bottom Picking Candidate?

No, BCD/BTC is not a great bottom picking candidate. However, the pair looks ripe for a breakout. The usual catalysts are present: flashing extreme oversold readings, nearing the apex of the wedge, and trading at all-time lows. Look for volume spikes as a sign of a breakout.

Daily chart of BCD/BTC

Ethos (BQX/BTC)

% Down from All-time High:

97%

Current Status:

BQX/BTC has been carving a bottom at 0.000045 for over a month now. Those who were able to buy at this level are lucky because BQX/BTC is looking ripe for a rally.

Bottom Picking Candidate?

Yes, if you can still manage to get as close to 0.000045 as possible. The volume surges in the last few days suggest that the pair is in the final stages of base building. On October 14, BQX/BTC printed volume that’s over 250% of its daily average.

Daily chart of BQX/BTC

SALT (SALT/BTC)

% Down from All-time High:

97%

Current Status:

SALT/BTC may already be in an uptrend but it seems that only a few people are looking. The 4-hour chart shows that the pair is currently generating a bullish higher low after pulling back from its first higher high in months. SALT/BTC looks bullish in our book.

Bottom Picking Candidate?

Yes, this pullback gives you an opportunity to buy the higher low. We expect SALT/BTC to trade near the support of the ascending channel as it consolidates.

4H chart of SALT/BTC

Bottom Line

In trading and investing, the worst performing cryptocurrency investments and other assets often provide the maximum financial opportunity. We’re seeing that in the first half of the list. We have a feeling that we’ll see more or less the same in the second half of the list. Stay tuned.

Important: Never invest (trade with) money you can't afford to comfortably lose. Always do your own research and due diligence before placing a trade. Read our Terms & Conditions here. Trade recommendations and analysis are written by our analysts which might have different opinions. Read my 6 Golden Steps to Financial Freedom here. Best regards, Jonas Borchgrevink.

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3.7 stars on average, based on 251 rated postsKiril is a financial professional with 4+ years of experience in financial writing, analysis and product ownership. He has passed all three CFA exams on first attempt and has a bachelor's degree with a specialty in finance. Kiril’s current focus is on cryptocurrencies and ETFs, as he does his own crypto research and is the subject matter expert at ETFdb.com. He also has his personal website, InvestorAcademy.org where he teaches people about the basics of investing. His ultimate goal is to help people with limited knowledge of finance and investments to create investment portfolios easily, and in line with their unique circumstances.




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Analysis

Volatile and Flat US Session Ends a Hectic Week for Stocks

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The major US indices finished virtually unchanged today, despite the positive open, while short-dated Treasuries closed the week near their multi-year lows. The session had several ups and downs, but the uptick in yields and the weakness in Europe proved too much for a sustained move higher to develop, despite the string of better-than-expected quarterly earnings reports.

S&P 500 Index Futures, 4-Hour Chart Analysis

From a broader perspective we can say that another bounce faded in stocks, with small-caps underperforming yet again, so the risk-off trend got one more confirmation.

Russell 2000, 4-Hour Chart Analysis

We have been tracking the main US small-cap benchmark all week long, as it has been precisely leading the broader market in recent weeks, and today the index got very close hitting a new 6-month low. The next week will be crucial for global risk assets, as given the long-term breakdowns in the main European benchmarks, the new bear market lows in Chinese stocks, and the ugly market internals on Wall Street, this might be the last opportunity to avoid protracted bearish period, or even a global bear market.

While Italian assets are under severe pressure, with government bond yields charging higher, decoupling from the “core” of the Eurozone, credit markets in general are not showing signs of broad distress. With that in mind, we don’t expect 2008-like dislocations in financial markets, for now, but investors should watch high-yield corporate bonds, where large excesses built up in recent years.

Forex Markets Turn Choppy as Dollar Pulls Back Again

EUR/USD, 4-Hour Chart Analysis

The China-led rebound in equities, which faded in late trading, and the Dollar’s retreat were the two main drivers in forex markets today. The EUR/USD recovered above the key 1.15 level after reaching as low as 1.1430 in early trading, while the Dollar index also failed to rise above its recent swing high, so the reserve currency could continue to consolidate before re-testing the August lows.

The bounce in the Euro was helped by the rumors regarding a possible new budget proposal from Italy, and as Moody’s downgraded Italy after the US market close, we will likely see further choppy, hard-to-trade action in currencies, especially given the large moves in US Treasury yields.

Gold Futures, 4-Hour Chart Analysis

Commodities had a mostly bullish day thanks to the Dollar’s dip, with copper and crude oil both recovering after yesterday’s selloff. The WTI crude contract bounced back all the way to the $70 per barrel level, while copper avoided a key breakdown out of its lengthy consolidation pattern.

Gold is also consolidating, albeit in a much different technical position, as the precious metal is trying to form a swing low that would confirm a short-term uptrend after last week’s breakout. A move above short-term resistance would likely lead to a test of the $1245-$1250 zone, with a likely rally up to the next major resistance level near $1260.

Featured image from Shutterstock

Important: Never invest (trade with) money you can't afford to comfortably lose. Always do your own research and due diligence before placing a trade. Read our Terms & Conditions here. Trade recommendations and analysis are written by our analysts which might have different opinions. Read my 6 Golden Steps to Financial Freedom here. Best regards, Jonas Borchgrevink.

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4.6 stars on average, based on 380 rated postsTrader and financial analyst, with 10 years of experience in the field. An expert in technical analysis and risk management, but also an avid practitioner of value investment and passive strategies, with a passion towards anything that is connected to the market.




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Altcoins

Zcash Price Analysis: What is Behind the Recent Surge in Price?

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  • Zcash had jumped over 17% over the period of 12-18th October, before running into sellers.
  • The foundation set to launch the Sapling protocol upgrade. To improve efficiency for shielded transactions.

Zcash over a 6-day period from 12-18th October gained a whopping 17%. Moving quickly from as low as $108, to then be above $126. Since, the price has run into some sellers and touted profit-takinggiven the large run in such as short time frame.

What Is This ‘Zcash’ (ZEC)?

Zcash was a hard fork of Bitcoin in 2016. Unlike the number one ranked crypto by market cap, privacy is ensured via Zcash. Personal and transaction data are kept confidential. This being facilitated through zero-knowledge proofs, allowing conducted transactions to go through verification without any required details about the sender, receiver as well as the transacted amount.

Zcash Set to Launch Sapling Protocol Upgrade

The Zcash foundation recently updated via their blog ‘Sapling Transaction Anatomy’. Full breakdown details can be read there as they are set to launch the Sapling protocol upgrade.

Sapling, this will be a network upgrade that aims to substantially improve efficiency for shielded transactions – paving the way for broad mobile, exchange as well as vendor adoption of Zcash shielded addresses. Their motivations for the Sapling upgrade are to increase speed on these shielded transactions.

Coinbase Speculation Continues to Do Rounds

The community around Zcash continues to speculate on whether the privacy-focused crypto will be added to Coinbase. Earlier in the year, Coinbase said they were exploring the possibility of listing Zcash and others, such as Cardano, Basic Attention Token, Stellar Lumens and 0x on its platforms. This covered back in July and does not guarantee it will be added, but the hope still appears to be flowing through the community.

Zcash Jumps to 20th Largest by Market Cap

Earlier this week, Zcash managed to break into the top 20 cryptocurrencies by market cap. It overtook Dogecoin. The current market cap at time of writing seen at $588,429,693, ahead of DOGE at $513,884,230.

Technical Review – Daily Chart

ZEC/USD daily chart

ZEC/USD has been cooling over the past two sessions, after its recent 17% price run. It isn’t too much of a surprise to see the current easing, given the fast surge higher. Near-term support can be found around $115 area, then further south within a demand zone tracking from $110-105. Looking to the upside, sellers are camped heading into the $130 territory. A higher near-term target would be eyed at $145, price last traded here on 28th September.

This year Zcash is still down some 80% from the highs in January, up over the $800 price level. It has failed to sustain any upside momentum, rallies continue to be sold by the bears. This is something that has been seen across the other cryptocurrecies, not just Zcash. The market continues to search for a bottom.

Disclaimer: The author owns bitcoin, Ethereum and other cryptocurrencies. He holds investment positions in the coins, but does not engage in short-term or day-trading.

Featured image courtesy of Shutterstock.

Important: Never invest (trade with) money you can't afford to comfortably lose. Always do your own research and due diligence before placing a trade. Read our Terms & Conditions here. Trade recommendations and analysis are written by our analysts which might have different opinions. Read my 6 Golden Steps to Financial Freedom here. Best regards, Jonas Borchgrevink.

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4.5 stars on average, based on 33 rated postsKen has over 8 years exposure to the financial markets. During a large part of his career, he worked as an analyst, covering a variety of asset classes; forex, fixed income, commodities, equities and cryptocurrencies. Ken has gone on to become a regular contributor across several large news and analysis outlets.




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