ICO Analysis: Arweave

Arweave is a new blockchain based protocol for storing data on a ledger, based on a new proof of the access consensus mechanism, which creates a low-cost solution for permanent data storing.

The project’s BlockWeave is a blockchain protocol that differs from the traditional blockchains with two basic concepts:

  1. List of hash blocks. This allows you to verify all old blocks and effectively evaluate all new blocks.
  2. A list of all active wallets in the system. This allows you to check transactions without running the block in which the last transaction was used.

Using these two concepts allows miners to quickly connect and work in this network.

The consensus mechanism in Arweave is based on PoA (Proof of access) and classic PoW (Proof of work). While the PoW model to generate each subsequent block relies on the previous block, the PoA model can take this from any randomly selected block. Miners do not need to store the entire block, as they can store only a few previously generated blocks. The outcome is a weave of blocks (from where the project derives its name).

Blockshadows is another concept employed by Arweave. Unlike the traditional blockchain network, where each newly created block is passed to each node in the network, Arweave sends only a small piece of the “shadow” block, which allows network nodes to restore a full block.

Use cases include:

  • Decentralized data stоrage: рersоnal and cоrроrate files can be stored fоr a single fee instead оf mоnthly subscriрtiоn. The рrice оf AR tоkens can be cheaрer than the mоnthly fees рaid fоr cоmрetitоrs such as Filecоin оr AWS. Data availability is almоst instant due tо the design оf the blоckchain.
  • Decentralized data distribution: cоntent can be uрlоaded anоnymоusly and shared with anybody. Any file can now be published, stored forever without anyone able to alter or delete the information. Arweave’s protocol design has an embedded mathematical pricing function that automatically load-balances demand for and supply of data storage, keeping storage costs fair and efficient
  • Decentralized data cоllabоratiоn: Allоws fоr availability оf exрerimental databases fоr review, meaning anybоdy can challenge and/оr cоnfirm its quality. This will stimulate collaboration between academic personnel in order to increase quality and range of academic papers.
  • Decentralized data Identity/Рrоtectiоn: Cоntent created оnline can be tracked and have a рrооf оf оwnershiр.

Competitors include Sia, Storj, Filecoin, Bluzelle and Lightstreams. Arweave’s competitive advantage is incentivizing a decentralized stоrage fоr large vоlumes оf data. Unlike mоst оther sоlutiоns that require either a daily subscriрtiоn оr рayment based оn data size, the project’s gоal is tо provide a permanent, immutable data stоrage fоr a fraction of the price оf other well-known competitors such as Filecоin, Siacоin, and Stоrj. The lоnger yоu keeр yоur data оn-chain, the cheaper it gets tо stоre it there.


The project has a hard cap of $8.7 million, which is on the low side. The pricing is highlighted below:

  • Seed £0.07 – £0.14
  • Strategic £0.28
  • Private £0.44
  • Public £0.55

The token distribution is as follows:

  • Seed Sale 10.8%
  • Strategic Sale 7.1%
  • Private Sale 19.5%
  • Public Sale 1.1%
  • Advisers 2.9%
  • Team 13.0%
  • Ecosystem 19.1%
  • Reserve 26.5%

Founder tokens have a lock-up of 5 years with a vesting of 20% each year.

In terms of token economy, AR is a utility tоken whose рrimary use is tо add data tо the blоckweave.

The team is highlighted below:

The team is quite young and ambitious although they lack experience in launching global projects so far.

Project partners include:

  • Techstars  startup accelerator that has advisers on the project.
  • Upvest –  venture fund that has advisers on the project.
  • NORTHBLOCK – consultancy and advisory services.
  • SHELF – a distributed network of auctions, will use Arweave’s data structure to store auction listings.

Advisers include:

High-level advisers are also present. The majority represents the partners of the project: TechStars and Upvest. In addition, it is worth highlighting Jeremy Epstein’s participation. Epstein was an adviser on IOTA and other successful projects.


A project with a wide use case idea, forthcoming main net launch, solid advisers and partnerships, increased project market awareness and a small hard cap make Arweave an attractive investment target.


  • Teams are build from recent graduates that lack experience in corporate governance, but nevertheless, have a good education and you can see that their Github is active and project main net will be launched in June. -1
  • Competition in this segment is rather fierce. -1
  • The token sale of the project went nine months and thus has a wide spread of pricing during various stages, which in turn makes it risky to enter into ICO. -1.5

Growth Factors

  • Data storing is a big market and the product has a competitive edge on its competitors. +1
  • Active Github and Mainnet launch June 8. +3
  • Confirmed partnerships and strong advisers. +1
  • Low cap ($8.7 million), which is both assuring and reasonable. It also sets the project up for significcant growth potential. +2
  • Brand awareness is solid; the Telegram group has 24,000 members. +2
  • There is a high demand for this project from the community and it seems that the private round is oversubscribed. The project employs PoC (proof of care) for investors who want to participate in the crowdsale, which implies that there will be an unmet demand during the ICO. This could offset negative risks of a wide price spread between token sale stages. +1.5


The project generates a two-fold opinion. On one hand, the team is rather young and inexperienced. On the other hand, they have good advisers and partners and plan to launch a working product in June. Although the space is full of competitors, the product has a competitive edge and market is still huge with significant growth potential. However, due to long token sale cycles, Arweave has a wide range of prices during different token sale stages. However, early indicators suggest the project is oversubscribed, which means high demand. This, in conjunction with a hard cap of $8.7 million, give Arweave a rating of 7 out of 10.

Investment Details

  • Type: Utility
  • Symbol: AR, native token
  • Platform: Native
  • Crowdsale: June
  • Minimum Investment: There is no specific minimum investment, allocations will be decided via the proof of interest system.
  • Price: 1 AR = $ 0.74
  • Hard Cap: $8 700 000
  • Payments Accepted: ETH
  • Restrictions Barred from Participating: As per legal advice, the following countries are prohibited: USA, North Korea, Iran, China

General details :

Website: https://www.arweave.org/

Telegram : https://t.me/arweave

Lightpwaper : https://www.arweave.org/files/arweave-lightpaper.pdf

Featured image courtesy of Shutterstock.

Vladislav Semjonov has a legal and financial background. He has been involved in crypto space since early 2017 in both ICO advising positions in several ICO consultancy firms, and as an ICO analyst for VC. He began contributing for Hacked.com in April 2017.