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ICO Analysis: Bancor



We have previously done a precursory article covering Bancor, but now, with the impending launch of its Initial Coin Offering, it’s time to analyze the thing in-depth.

In our previous article, we discussed the primary novelty of Bancor, its “smart token” asset contracts. A reader wrote in with concern over this aspect, and wants more in-depth information into how this can work or is safe. Clearly new concepts like this do need more explanation, so let’s see what we can understand here.

Perhaps the top-tier objection to the Bancor protocol are its roots, of course:

The Bancor protocol is named in honor of the Keynesian proposal to introduce a supranational reserve currency called Bancor to systematize international currency conversion after WWII.

The name is, of course, quite apt for the purpose of the token. Is Bancor itself Keynesian? Not exactly, but we must dutifully check over the offering here to ensure that there are not value-murdering features like centralized institutions being able to introduce inflation, or supposedly immutable smart contracts being thwarted through appeals to authority. These are the real risks that many Bitcoiners, and others, take with Keynesian economics, and so this platform requires thorough review to ensure that it is not going to introduce such risks by design.

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Smart Tokens

The Bancor protocol enables built-in price discovery and a liquidity mechanism for tokens on smart contract blockchains. These “smart tokens” hold one or more other tokens in reserve, and enable any party to instantly purchase or liquidate the smart token in exchange for one of its reserve tokens, directly through the smart token’s contract, at a continuously calculated price, according to a formula which balances buy and sell volumes.

Especially in recent offerings, a number of tokens have come to the game which could find themselves without any value at all. The Bancor notion of “continuous liquidity” seems to be based on the idea of previously proven value from other assets the token offering might have access to. Thus a “smart token” can always be liquid because it always retains value from another economic source.

This is higher-level thinking, from the get-go, in terms of tokens and crypto-economics. While Ethereum and Counterparty, and others, serve a similar purpose by allowing anyone to issue their own tokens, those tokens are overwhelmingly defined by their utility, and so they can be difficult to assess. But if one can point to a metric such as “each token contains X bitcoins, X ether, X ___, and so its intrinsic value is at least equal to the value of one or all of those,” then there is a new metric that is useful in determining the likely trajectory of projects. In short, one function that smart tokens can perform is that of token issuers providing collateral.

The current exchange model for currencies/assets has a critical barrier, requiring a certain volume of trading activity to achieve market-liquidity. This inherent barrier makes it nearly impossible for small-scale currencies (such as community currencies, loyalty points or other custom tokens) to be linked (exchangeable) to other popular currencies using a market-determined exchange rate.

So, in the current world, where BTC, ETH, DASH, and LTC make up a large portion of the cryptocurrency wealth, a token creator might decide to issue a token that is contains assets around 50% Bitcoin, 25% ETH, 12.5% DASH, and 12.5% LTC.

This is sort of the same principal that mutual funds operate on: mixing various similar instruments so that when one or more of them have poor performance, the others can pick up the slack. But the token holder, through the Bancor protocol, is able to extract that given value at any time and destroy their tokens issued on the Bancor protocol. An FX mutual fund, made up of the world’s currencies, would be the closest thing to this, but instead there is no firm managing and the individual currencies can be obtained by the investor at any time, via the protocol.

This aspect could give rise to other cryptocurrencies being used in actual settlements, regardless if exchanges are offering such pairs at that time or not. The speed of value proposition would become more important than the speed of human change – ie, new currencies which come after Bancor but have exceeding merit will not need for recognition from the wider community before being used as the base currency with which others are denominated and traded. The control that exchanges as a whole have over the way we think about our coins would be lessened in such a world where this became commonplace.

The term “instant liquidity” is used a lot in the documentation and promotional materials surrounding the Bancor protocol, and they make the case in their whitepaper that liquidity for newer cryptocurrencies is a problem. However, the words “instant liquidity” are perhaps misleading. The term liquid means different things for different users. Some would consider getting to Bitcoin itself to be liquid, while others wouldn’t consider the assets liquid until they were in an account they can spend anywhere else in the world – ie, fiat. So let’s leave aside the “instant liquidity” as either a plus or a minus, and instead focus on the structure of a smart token and how it can actually be used, in practice, in concrete terms.

A smart token holds a balance of least one other reserve token, which (currently) can be a different smart token, any ERC20 standard token or Ether. Smart tokens are issued when purchased and destroyed when liquidated, therefore it is always possible to purchase a smart token with its reserve token, as well as to liquidate a smart token to its reserve token, at the current price.

Okay. How does this work?

A given “smart token” will base its operations on what Bancor refers to as a “constant reserve ratio.” All figures within the smart token will be in relation to the smart token’s market capitalization as a whole, which is its supply multiplied by its price. Instead of Bancor token authors creating tokens at the beginning of an ICO offering or what have you, they are issued as they are purchased, and destroyed as they are liquidated.

A Bancor token must be funded by one of its reserve currencies. If the CRR of a given token is 100% of a given other currency, then a traditional increase in the price of the token will take place. However, if a token’s CRR has a variety of reserve tokens, then the price increase due to the purchase will be mitigated. This is what they mean when they say they are creating a new method of price discovery: a variety of markets are held within each token, potentially, creating more interesting and even accurate price definitions at market. And while a token may be issued on the Bancor protocol and consist of multiple traded cryptocurrencies making up its Constant Reserve Ratio, it, itself, can be traded elsewhere. People purchasing these tokens on other markets would not be able to simply say something had lost all value because its Bitcoin value had significantly dropped, for example, if its corresponding values in other pairs also represented in the token have not dropped likewise. Similarly, traders would have to watch themselves when pricing sales of such tokens, because saying “this token is worth .01BTC” does not mean much if any of its other reserve currencies are not trading at a similar level. (This is why Bancor can make the claim that there is “no spread” for individual Bancor tokens, because while there actually is a spread, the settlement of any token issued by the Bancor protocol will wind up with its holder gaining the reserve currencies within it.)

From a traditional financial perspective, this all sounds an awful like the type of instruments which got us into the bubbles and crashes of the early 2000s. Traders were packaging millions of low-value, low-performance loans and other financial instruments together and selling them as packages of “diversified assets” and then speculating on their performance from there, in some cases even managing to bet against them and profit being the only ones with the real information as regards their likely performance. The complexity of these instruments was part of the reason the whole musical chairs act went on so long.

Yet, while there is potential that bad actors will use the technology to scam others into investing into nothing at all, there is still a lot to be said for innovating in the market strategies of a tokenized future.

How People Will Use It

The Bancor team themselves list a number of use-cases that will be immediately obvious. Rewards programs, decentralized asset baskets similar to those being developed by ShapeShift’s Prism platform, and federations of similar tokens. Lower-volatility tokens can be created in-house by trading groups, and such products can be offered for sale on the market. Cryptocurrency mutual funds become much easier to envision, despite the volatility of the various markets. This part of finance will eventually become much more important in the Cryptocurrency space as things mature and more and more legacy institutions integrate with cryptocurrency payment, receipt, and trading rails.

The Bancor token itself will be the most prominent for the Bancor Protocol, as it will be the one that funds all future advancement and development. Its actual cap is not published until 80% of that cap has been reached, but 100 tokens will be issued per 1 ETH spent. BNT tokens will have a 20% Constant Reserve Ration of ETH. BNT itself will be based on the value of the Bancor Network and its reserve currency, ETH, although the Bancor Foundation can issue more tokens later.

Bancor tokens themselves will hold value for as long as the Bancor Foundation and Ethereum do, and users will have the option to liquidate them at any time. This would mean, essentially, a 20% Ethereum redemption is possible. In assessing this ICO, you must be aware that some people are going to do exactly that.

Bancor Team

The Bancor foundation itself is not going to be doing the creation of the Bancor Protocol, but instead directing it. It is composed of financially-focused executives including Eyal Hertzog, who is the primary spearhead behind all of it. Hertzog’s success has been in IPO technology companies, such as the first major Israeli video sharing site, MetaCafe.

Chief Monetary Architect Dr. Bernard Lietaer was involved in the creation of the Euro, and so it is no surprise that much of the thrust of Bancor is in trying to unite and stabilize disparate cryptocurrency assets.

As far as development goes, they are currently contracting LocalCoin, Ltd, which, like many similar ICOs we have seen, seems to have been created specifically for the purpose of Bancor. The model seems to work like this:

  • Have a new idea related to cryptocurrency.
  • Flesh out that idea.
  • Create a firm to develop the idea, to be funded by sales of the new token.
  • In some cases, profit on both sides of this.

This is why we we will review the token distribution before getting to the verdict on Bancor, but let’s see who is working for LocalCoin.

At the helm they have Yehuda Levi, who formerly worked on AppCoin, one of the earlier cryptocurrency plays to get traditional VC backing. They list a litany of other competent, established developers, all based in Israel, working on the development of Bancor Protocol smart contracts.

Distribution of the Token

As we can see here, the token distribution is confusing on first glance. Let’s think about this. We know that 10% are going to the “team,” in the form of BNT tokens. Then we know that 40% of the 50% of tokens (20% of the total supply) are also going to fund development. That means somewhere in the neighborhood of just over 20% are going to be awarded to LocalCoin in the form of paid software development and initial awards. 20% are also held back by the foundation for later conversion and usage. The foundation is free to offer later crowdsales to continue work on the platform.

But, this ICO is also different than most. The tokens’ only enduring value is in the enduring value of the Bancor Protocol, which means there is little or no incentive for the coins withheld to be liquidated right away, but instead to create value for the protocol and liquidate them at a later time.

The proceeds of the crowdsale and future tokens issued by the Bancor Foundation will continue to develop the distributed marketplace that is Bancor’s primary function. BNT themselves will have speculative values related to the value of the protocol itself, it seems. The problem of team coins is mitigated by their vesting structure, which only allows them mature up to a sixth of withheld coins every six months.

The Verdict

There’s a lot to like about the Bancor Protocol, but one can totally forego this crowdsale and still benefit from it. So let’s talk about the value of the BNT token, and whether or not you’re going to be able to profit by purchasing it. The odds are definitely on you profiting in the short term, although long-term it’s easy to see bigger entities, like the Ethereum DAO themselves, offering alternative ways of conducting the same type of business.

BNT gets an immediate boost in safety rating since you are able to liquidate it for 20% of the Eth that was put into it in the first place at any time. That is to say, it’s impossible to lose your entire investment, in terms of actual Ethereum, so that must be accounted for.

The level of confusion Bancor-created instruments have the potential to create must also be accounted. We have to deduct a full two points for that, as there will probably be some hiccups in the beginning, and these could even be catastrophic and unrecoverable. The nature of mixing assets may be looked down upon parts of the community it looks to serve, so another .25 points should be taken for that. Because this entire concept is nascent in an excessively nascent industry, another full point must be deducted to account for the potential that overshadowing plays are going to be made in the near future.

This leaves a score of 6.75 on a scale of 0 to 10 in terms of safety, and that feels about right. This means the author is betting in favor of the idea that within 7 days after the purchase of tokens, you will be able to divest them at a rate of about .01 Eth each or more. It does not mean the author is not betting. It simply takes into account all of the factors, most of which are based on his past experience watching similar things launch. While every project is different, the tendencies of this market are analytically-assessable.

Investment Details

You’re able to make an investment into the Bancor Protocol at a rate of .01 ETH per Bancor Network Token in less than 7 hours. The minimum time this sale will run is one hour, and they had to develop a special method to ensure this would be the case. There is a hidden cap on how much ETH will be raised, but no one will know that figure until 80% have been raised – this is to prevent early investors from being able to accurately dominate the token pool.

Investments are subject to terms and conditions. The address which will be handling the investments is 0xBbc79794599b19274850492394004087cBf89710. Transactions already sent to this address at launch time fall under their one-hour-minimum policy, which dictates that if more than 100 million Ether are raised in the first hour, additional funds will be allocated specially. This post goes into a lot more detail about the funds and the minimum time period. No funds should be sent from a wallet which you do not have direct control over.

The longest the crowdsale will run is until June 26th at 14:00GMT.

Do your own due diligence, investments are at your own risk. Do not invest more than you can lose.

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

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  1. demetrist

    June 12, 2017 at 9:51 am

    Thank you for the great analysis! I am confused about 1 aspect, if you can help. Bancor team has announced that 80% of ETH collected that is above the hidden cap will be locked into a smart contract for 2 years or until it’s fully spent, which will automatically buy BNT if the price = 0.01 ETH (the ICO price). I m quite confident that the ICO will go over it’s hidden cap by a lot. Doesn’t that guarantee that we are not losing on the investment for quite a while, and that we could get out of the project at any time at at least the price we bought in (and meanwhile if ETH prices goes up, profiting from that respect) ?

  2. paracetomol

    June 12, 2017 at 11:13 am

    Is it safe to send ETH to the address shown in the article a few hours before the opening of the crowdfund?

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AIRBLOC is a platform for the analysis and trade of personal data, uniting buyers and companies wishing to obtain information about their customers.

As a decentralized platform for the exchange of personal data for both people and applications, AIRBLOC is planning to expand the data market to a level where individuals and small applications can participate, which will improve the quality and quantity of data transferred so that all market participants eventually benefit from this exchange.

Users will be able to monetize their own data, while monitoring and controlling transactions. Through the DAuth protocol on AIRBLOC, applications can receive permission from users and sell data on their behalf. In addition, advertisers can easily acquire and access a small amount of data and optimize their marketing campaigns using effective micro-targeting based on a high-quality and diverse set of user data.

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Data Providers are end users, and fully control the use and dissemination of data.

Gatekeepers are a network node; they keep the network from fraudulent activities by checking data and detecting user violations.

Data Collectors are applications that collect data and monetize them on behalf of users. They can collect indirect data using DAuth or collect direct data from users.

Data Refineries analyze data collected from Data Providers and processes them into user-level attributes. The processed data is then added to the user profile so that Data Consumers can filter them according to the specified attributes when creating a new segment.

Data Consumers are advertisers who purchase data for targeted ads using ABL tokens.

The protocol layers are described below:

  • Application Layer: Consists of third-party DApps that use Airbloc, including Airbloc Client, Airbloc DMP, and SDK.
  • API Layer: an interface provided for communication with Airbloc Network and third-party DApps.
  • Service Layer: Airbloc Contract, which includes all the functions of Airbloc Network.
  • Core Layer: This layer is based on the Ethereum platform. It uses the internal subchain network to verify the data and uses the interchain network to link the two block libraries.

The data in the AIRBLOC system go through the seven stages of data processing, involving all five types of stakeholders. User-created data is collected and stored after Gatekeeper checks them. The refinery will refine these data in commercially available Ad data and sell it to consumers.

AIRBLOC has many competitors, including Wibson, Datum,, Insights Network, Opiria, Metame and BitClave. However, the whitepaper explains how AIRBLOC differs from these companies.


The total token supply is set at 400 million ABL. The tokens will be mined based on the annual inflation rate of 2.5% with the depreciation rate of -10.9%. The mined tokens will be stored on the AIR rewards pool. Such accumulated rewards will be given to Users and Gatekeepers as rewards. The block reward has a half-life of six years. As a result, more rewards will be given to early stage Network participants.

Nodes need ABL tokens in order to validate the date, and be rewarded in ABL as per usual POS

The token sale metrics are provided below:

In terms of token economics, AIRBLOC offers two types of tokens. One is the AIRBLOC (ABL), and the other is AIRBLOC Reward (AIR). ABL is a transferable ERC20 token and AIR is a non-transferrable token belonging to Users but can later be converted into ABL at a ratio of one-to-one.

While AIR cannot be transferred to others, it could be converted to ABL. However, it is impossible to convert ABL back to AIR.

The ABL token utility is spelled out below:

  • [DATA SOURCE] Data Providers who provide data will be rewarded with ABL tokens.
  • [DATA CLEANSING+VALIDATION] Data Validators are rewarded in ABL tokens for validating and cleansing data (removing unnecessary segments of the data) before the data is registered on-chain.
  • [STORAGE] Data Storage nodes are rewarded in ABL tokens for storing data.
  • [DATA REFINING] Data Refineries analyze data and refine them into insights.
  • [MARKETPLACE] Interactions and transactions on the AIRBLOC Data Marketplace would require the ABL token.

AIR is a reward token for Users that complete productive activities in AIRBLOC, such as:

  • Provide data or contribute to the data reliability mining process.
  • When Gatekeepers maintain AeroNetwork node.
  • Refiners process raw data into valuable data.


Actually, I was bothered by the inflation concept, so I dug into inflation and AIR issuance.

inflation will work in two ways:

1) ABL mined by nodes through a POS which requires ABL and is set at 2.5% per annum with 10.9% decrease in yield.
2) Through conversion of AIR, which is also given to user as per their contribution and amount of AIR they have.

To get ABL tokens, you must:

  1. Buy at the exchange
  2. Receive reward from node
  3. Convert from AIR

In this sense, the procedure of AIR issuance is rather important. And for this AIRBLOC introduces a concept of AIR pool.

AIR pool will be a dynamic account, from which rewards will be given as per process described above. What is important is to understand how it is filled in the first place:

  • 10% of total supply of ABL goes to AIR pool to ensure liquidity.
  • It is filled with trading fees, data usage rights fees paid by refineries and penalties for misbehavior.

Thus we see that issue of AIR is an ongoing process. But in order to hinder potential price dumps by AIR holders, conversion of AIR to ABL per hour is limited to 0.1% of AIR generated by the network.



Roi Nam is the CEO and co-founder. He also served as CEO of ab180 (parent company) for two years.  He was engaged in web development for 1.5 years, as well as CSO for 1 year.

Wonkyung Lyu is the Dev Team Lead and co-founder. He is also co-founder in ab180.

Hunjae Jung serves as the project’s Back-end Part Lead and co-founder  and was also part of the founding team at ab180. Naeun Kim, Design Team Leader, rounds out the founding team at AIRBLOC.

The broader team is filled with developers and business professionals that are associated with ab180.

The advisory team includes JH Kim, who is also part of the ICON Foundation. He has almost 20 years of experience in the field of security, has experience in developing patented applications, such as the FCI protocol, has the CISA qualification, and is currently the director of Theloop.

Jason Han, who serves General Director of Kakao Blockchain, is also on the advisory team. He has served co-chairman and technical director of FuturePlay Tech VC.

Serial entrepreneur  Sungjae Hwang is also an adviser to the project. He is a partner of Futureplay, the initial high-speed accelerator in South Korea and the CEO of FoundationX. Prior to these companies, he founded several start-ups. He worked as the chief product officer in Fluenty Inc. and AI chatbot startup, which was acquired by Samsung Electronics in 2017.

Louis Jinhwa Kim, who previously served as Director of the Tide Institute Institute of Finance and Delegate of the Republic of Korea to the United Nations Conference on Environment and Development (2012), is also on the team.

Partners include:

  • GS SHOP, a leading online retail platform in Korea.
  • Allbit, a new type of crypto exchange gateway. .
  • FoundationX, one of the growing funds and accelerators of venture capital in Korea.
  • VEAT, which is one of the leading law firms in Korea specializing in startup advisory services.
  • ORANGEFARM, which is focused on incubating promising startups in Korea. ab180, the parent company AIRBLOC, was incubated in ORANGEFARM as early as 2017.
  • SENTIENCE, one of the leading Korean research companies,.
  • Deblock, an accelerator in Korea which is jointly invested by ICON Foundation & Ad4th Insight, a specialized block-chain company.
  • Battle Entertainment, a leading comic platform in Korea, serving more than a million customers.
  • Humanscape, a the leading medical platform for customer relationship management in Korea, which helps hospitals monitor the condition of patients after surgery and provide follow-up services to patients.
  • Rainist, a leading Korean software company which provides recommendations for financial products based on lifestyle patterns.
  • Fysical, the world’s first full-fledged, fully functional, decentralized market for location data.
  • Indorse, a decentralized social network for professionals.


A large team with extensive experience in the sector looks solid. The guys were able to attract consultants in areas where there are obvious gaps, as well as partners represented by ICON.


  • Based on token sale ROI statistic, marketplaces and advertising related projects do not have a good performance in the short term. -1
  • Customer attraction could face challenges. However, to offset this, the platform has developed a proprietary AirBloc Protocol SDK (software development kit) that has already been stress tested by 60 million devices in Korea. The SDK Protocol functions like a layer that can be easily implemented on top of apps, allowing acquisition of customers. -0.5
  • Platform implementation and scaling could face difficulties, as Ethereum is not suitable for this. Therefore, AIRBLOC uses the hybrid-chain architecture that uses Ethereum and ICON. Data validation and the process will be done through Aero Network, which will use ICON. Such a combination seems promising; however, without a working MVP (planned to be in Q3 2018) it is hard to judge on its performance. -1
  • There are ptential regulatory barriers in relation to private data protection laws, although the team looks prepared to handle it. -0.5
  • I do not like the fact that private sale participants get 45%, even though 30% of 45% will be locked for 3 months as their overall part in the token distribution is rather high. -2
  • The project involves a complex inflation model, which involves two tokens. -1

Growth Potential

  • Mother company ab108 is already successful in advertising market analysis in Korea. +2
  • Whitepaper and documentation are pretty good. +1
  • The team is above average with many strong developers. +2
  • A lot of strong partnerships like ICON and GS shop, Coinplug as well as several VCs. +2
  • Token metrics and distribution are in a good range with a hard cap of 20,000 ETH (around $12 million). +2
  • Strong token use case. +1
  • A good growth strategy for user attraction. +1
  • Hype is there (Telegram has 10,000+ members and lots of people are on the whitelist). +2


This is definitely a project to look for. The team has all the necessary experience and knowledge for a successful execution. They leverage on their mother company ab108 and numerous partnerships. They have some obstacles in their way, but they have a clear plan how to overcome them. AIRBLOC receives 7 of 10.

Investment Details

  • Type: ERC20 – Utility
  • Symbol: ABL
  • Platform: Hybrid chain structure: Ethereum and ICON
  • Crowdsale: June
  • Minimum Investment: 0.2 ETH
  • Price: 1 ETH = 10,000 ABL
  • Hard Cap: 20,000 ETH
  • Payments Accepted: ETH
  • Restrictions Barred from Participating: USA and China

General details :

Website :

Whitepaper :

Telegram :

Github :

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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4.9 stars on average, based on 6 rated postsVladislav 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 in April 2017.

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ICO Analysis: RedPen



RedPen is a breakthrough social news and storytelling platform powered by blockchain and artificial intelligence. It combines news and public opinion into one experience to showcase what the internet thinks, feels and says about stories. The RedPen platform transforms online communities and information consumption while highlighting author reputation.

The company aims to build and empower the global, connected community by making the world’s information collectively understood. Like taking a red pen to the internet, RedPen will allow users to view and contribute to the most transparent, informative and contextual rendition of content and news. RedPen allows you to follow your favorite interests and identify who is talking about a given topic. The platform also intends to highlight the various viewpoints, biases, and how the crowd is feeling.

RedPen’s vision for consuming, sharing, following and discussing content can be organized into impact categories:


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  • Provides more complete information, faster
  • Reduces time discovering your favorite content
  • Re-invests time to gain more knowledge about additional topics


  • Clearly displays source attribution
  • Stores and captures opinion
  • Ensures transparency and privacy

Decentralized Control

  • Captures crowdsourced viewpoints
  • Processes distributed observations
  • Allows people to discover and learn at their own pace and depth


  • Summarizes essential story elements
  • Provides rich access to less obvious information
  • Presents a broad public opinion
  • Illuminates and embrace biases


  • Feeds people’s curiosity and passion for knowledge
  • Visualizes topics you care about, all in one place
  • Provides a more comprehensive understanding
  • Compares and contrasts across diverse sources

The RedPen system aggregates, analyzes and synthesizes diverse information being written and discussed all in one place—called RedPen Stories. Through a simple user experience, RedPen will identify relevant context, summarize public opinion and highlight author perspectives. Additionally, RedPen Stories intends to encourage people to share, connect and engage in meaningful conversations with their friends and personal networks to cultivate community and storytelling. By leveraging artificial intelligence, creative uses of blockchain, and advanced analytics, RedPen provides individuals with more complete information, faster. Through game-changing formats, dynamic content will be delivered with the necessary and appropriate context to maximize understanding and community. This ensures that the full, verifiable life of information is always available for the world to see.


The RedPen token (RPN) is an ERC20 compatible protocol that will be used to acquire a RedPen Membership. Members will then be able to use RPN to purchase products and services on RedPen such as:

  • Request new content sources and authors to be added to RedPen
  • Eliminate ads
  • Renew RedPen Memberships and receive discounts

RedPen Membership includes the premium benefit of access to RedPen Reputations. Additional benefits include product opinion polls, official beta testing, access to early releases of new features, front of the line resume submissions and RPN token badges. RedPen says it is committed to rewarding users, creators, publishers and innovators in the media space. Five percent of RPN tokens will be distributed as incentives to reward socially responsible users, content creators and partners.

The RedPen ICO is following a unique format with three tiers (private pre-sale, Sale 1 and Sale 2). The private pre-sale is scheduled to begin in Q2 2018 followed by Sale 1 scheduled to begin in Q3 2018 with a price of 1 RPN equivalent to $0.82 USD. Sale 2 is scheduled to occur up to two years later.

The token distribution is as follows:

  • 60% Token Sales (Presale 20% / Sale 1 22% / Sale 2 18%)
  • 15% Team
  • 10% Advisers/Partners
  • 10% Company
  • 5%  Rewards


The RedPen team is comprised of innovators, creators, marketers and engineers with deep technical expertise in data science, machine learning, data mining, natural language processing, mobile development, large-scale distributed platforms and emerging blockchain skills. A few members of the executive team are:

  • Ryan Lewis – Chief Creative Officer and Founder at RedPen. World-renowned producer, musician, music video director, entrepreneur. Four-time Grammy award winner.
  • RJ Smith – CEO, CTO, and Founder at RedPen. Former Technical Director for the U.S. Intelligence Community. Former Engineer for Goodyear. Former Computer Specialist at The White House
  • Peter Grossman – Chief Commercial Officer at RedPen. Former President for Arnold Worldwide. Former EVP, Director of Client Service for JWT. Former Board Member and CEO for QWiPS.

RedPen lists a total of eight advisers with a strong background in blockchain, government and intelligence and online publishing.


RedPen has the potential to be an indispensable tool for people who want to understand the complete story about the things they care about and join in the conversations around them. In the current ICO market with multiple blockchain projects all vying for the fastest TPS, the concept behind this ICO is a welcome change. Investors looking for potentially profitable projects under the radar should keep an eye on RedPen.


  • A lockup or vesting period has become the norm for team tokens, which gives investors the assurance of long-term commitment. There currently isn’t a lockup period or vesting schedule listed for the RedPen team. -1.25
  • Many ICO investors look for projects with starting low market caps to increase the opportunity of high ROI. A $45 million fundraising goal is slightly on the high side for current ICOs. -1.75

Growth Potential

  • An ICO with an MVP is ahead of the game and appeals to investors. In 2017 RedPen developed an initial mobile application and software to detect story similarity and summarize language comparison. By Q4 2018, RedPen will release a mobile app focused on crypto and blockchain topics. +3.5
  • Producer Ryan Lewis and singer/rapper Macklemore are deeply involved in the creation of RedPen and are not simply lending their names as an endorsement. However, having famous people involved will definitely be a major marketing bonus that will attract more attention to the project. +3.5
  • There are all-stars on the advisory team in the areas of business, entertainment and blockchain marketing, which could sway investors to come aboard. +3


With their unique and practical concept, star power and all-star advisers, RedPen could be one of the sleepers of 2018 with excellent potential. The ICO receives a 7 out of 10 rating.

Investment Details

  • Symbol: RPN
  • Platform: Ethereum
  • Price: 1 RPN = $0.82 USD
  • Total Supply: 250,000,000 RPN
  • Payments Accepted: ETH, BTC, FIAT
  • Barred From Participation: USA, Canada, Cayman Islands, South Korea, China
  • Fundraising Goal: $45,000,000 USD

For more information regarding Redpen:


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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ICO Analysis: Arxum



ARXUM is a spinoff from a longtime German company, Arend Prozessautomation GmbH, which has established customer relationships with companies such as Audi, BMW, Volkswagen and Continental.

ARXUM combines software and hardware development competencies with industrial production experience to attach physical machines to the bockchain world. ARXUM will interconnect manufacturers, suppliers and customers in a blockchain-based network. Data will be transferred between users and machines, enabling customized manufacturing for the same price as mass production. ARXUM enables manufacturers to offer customized products for prices at mass production levels and enables everyone to produce their self-created products.

The company uses Ricardian smart contracts to bind all peers into one production order in which quality standards can be defined and respective contractual partners are bound. All participants of the ARXUM platform save money and time through the direct connection between factories and users.


The ARXUM Connection Box (ACB) is a device invented by an experienced team of engineers and programmers. It connects the physical world of machines to the blockchain. Through the ACB, machines are connected to smart contracts. The ACB can also receive and send payments and initiate production. That way, less manual labor is needed in the production process. ARXUM uses blockchain technology to automatically send production orders. Enormous amounts of money are saved by replacing manual labor with standardized framework contracts.

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When the ARXUM Connection Box is linked to production machines, a blockchain-based network is established. This is the ARXUM Production Network. The machines can interact with one another on the network and production orders can be downloaded straight from the blockchain. The network also works as a marketplace where individuals and businesses can interact and produce goods together.


The ARXUM Production Protocol is what automates the manufacturing processes. It connects businesses, individuals and production machines with one another through smart contracts. It also delivers end-to-end visibility within everything that happens during the production. This includes things like proof of ownership, proof of existence, location and provenance. These features enable Intelligent Production Facilities. Intelligent machines connected directly to the blockchain can exchange information and control one another. This includes machines with crypto-wallets that can pay other machines for actions, so-called M2M payments.

Three main applications are built upon the ARXUM Production Protocol:

  • Marketplace
  • Production Consortium
  • Mass-Customization


The AX ERC20 token will be used to pay service fees and fund smart contract production orders. While other currencies may be used for transaction payments, users will receive a discount by utilizing AX tokens. The AX token will be used for loyalty fees for manufacturers, an access fees for premium membership functions and as rewards for specific network activities.

One unit of AX is worth $0.25 and the market cap is $18.75 million. Eighty percent of the 125 million AX tokens will be available for purchase during the private pre-sale and crowdsale. The crowdsale with have bonus tiers ranging from 5% to 35%. Details can be found in their whitepaper. Unsold tokens will be burned.

The token distribution is as follows:

  • 62% Crowdsale
  • 18% Private Presale
  • 16% Team – 2 Year Vesting
  • 4%  Bounty

ICO proceed allocation:

  • 53% Technology & Software Development
  • 14% Business Development & Operations
  • 20% Marketing, Community & Sales
  • 5%  Security
  • 4%  Legal, Regulation & Compliance
  • 3%  Offices & Miscellaneous Expenses


The ARXUM executive team brings experience in software development, management and business ownership/development. ARXUM’s core team consists of software developers, industrial PLC systems, application programming and blockchain developers. Twelve team members and eight advisers are listed on the ARXUM website including the following:

    • Founder & Managing Director – ARXUM
    • Head of R&D and Production IT – AREND Prozessautomation GmbH
    • Former Postdoctoral Researcher – University of Luxembourg
    • Founder & Managing Director – ARXUM
    • Managing Director – HIC Investitionen und Consulting GmbH
    • Blockchain Development – ARXUM
    • Blockchain Developer and Chief Of Delivery – LimeChain
    • Co-Founder and Chief Growth Officer – Swip
    • Former Senior Software Developer – Musala Soft

Advisers include:

    • President and CEO – BlockStar
    • Board Member – Blockchain Compliance Alliance
    • Professor of Automation, Engineering, and Management – Trier University of Applied Sciences
    • Expertise: Management of interdisciplinary Projects, Development of Cyber-Physical-Systems, and Systematic Problem Solving
    • Co-Founder – DLT Capital GmbH
    • Scientific Assistant – Frankfurt School Blockchain Center


ARXUM has the advantage of coming from an existing company with major business connections. This will be a leg up in terms of adoption. If manufacturers are quick to join and utilize ARXUM, they could achieve success and create name recognition ahead of competitors. Also, having an MVP (ARXUM Connection Box) prior to the crowdsale gives investors more confidence over investing in a whitepaper ICO.


  • The hype factor can’t be denied in the current ICO market. Compared to other ICOs that heavily market themselves to create hype and attract investors, ARXUM currently has relatively low hype and low social media presence. Also, with ARXUM selling 80% of their tokens, they don’t have as high a marketing budget as those who sell less. -1.5
  • While a relatively small amount is being sold in the private pre-sale, there is no lock-up period mentioned on the tokens sold. The pre-sale will almost assuredly have better terms than the public crowdsale. -1.5

Growth Potential

  • While many ICOs come to market with little more than a website and whitepaper, ARXUM is an ICO with an actual MVP. The ARXUM Connection Box is fully developed and ready for use. +4
  • Eighty percent of tokens are available for purchase and the majority of those will be sold in the public crowdsale rather than the private pre-sale. This should definitely appeal to average investors. +3
  • The team, along with five credible advisers, is 12 members strong and brings experience in the necessary fields required to bring the project to success. Their 2 year vesting period also shows dedication and commitment. +4


While ARXUM hasn’t been heavily marketed, the project is an excellent fit for the blockchain. Whether more hype is created or not, ARXUM has potential to be a profitable ICO in 2018 with an already working product and 80% of tokens for sale at a reasonable hard cap. Coming from an existing company with established industrial partners will help with implementation and adoption. ARXUM receives a 7 out of 10 rating.

Investment Details

  • Symbol: AX
  • Platform: Ethereum
  • Total Supply: 125M
  • Available for Purchase: 100M (80%)
  • Token Price: $0.25 USD
  • Hard Cap: $18.75M
  • Private Pre-Sale: $5,625,000
  • Crowdsale: $13,125,000
  • Crowdsale Date: TBA
  • Bonus Tiers: ICO Phase 1 – 35%, ICO Phase 2 – 20%, 15%, 10%, 5%

For more information regarding Arxum:


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 43 rated postsKent Hamilton - ICO Analyst on Hacked and Founder of - ICO Insider Info

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