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ICO Analysis: BitCAD

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As it matures, Ethereum becomes increasingly interesting from both a financial and a cryptocurrency/cryptographic perspective. The platform is truly what you would call “Blockchain 2.0” because, as intended by creator Vitalik Buterin, the global community of Ethereans continue to expand and develop new technologies on top of it, technologies which would not have been possible in a “Bitcoin maximalist” utopia for years to come as well as would never have been possible at all in traditional financial modes.

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We have to acknowledge that most of these efforts, though, will fail. Some will come too early, some will fade in the noise generated by competing efforts, and some will fail due to bad execution. It’s never a horrible call to invest a few bucks into anything; if you spread your wad over many baskets, some are bound to grow and make up for the losers. For instance, if the author some years back had put twice as much into Bitcoin as he had into US Steel, by now he’d be so financially comfortable that analysis of any sort would seem to be an unnecessary interruption of his life-long vacation.

Today we’re going to analyze BitCAD, which is working in the same space as Aragon. It aims to:

…[provide] a venue for seamless integration of business and computer technology. BitCAD will help users to automate routine business processes, find business opportunities globally and locally, make instant value transactions and resolve disputes in a trustless environment.

Let’s just put it out there right now, before we get too far: everything, literally everything being described as intended use of BitCAD, can be done on Aragon through extensions to the platform. This could lead to the above described phenomena wherein one or the other will be drowned out in the noise of the other. Aragon already has a stable alpha release. Yet, it can also be that co-existence is possible, even if it is not the tendency of networked services. Bing Search and Google Search co-exist, Bitcoin and Ethereum co-exist. The question is which is better for the user, which is more profitable, and so forth. That is what we will carefully determine here, knowing too that others will come along with similar ideas and that others are doubtlessly already active in the same space.

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Ease-of-use, of course, is important. BitCAD apparently aims to achieve this with a simplified smart contract constructor platform, so that businesses with few if any programmers can still participate. Another interesting feature is that they will allow authors of smart contracts to make money by selling contract templates to businesses. “Standards bodies” are mentioned here, but not expanded upon. Such bodies could mean law schools and the like, as the enforceability of contracts occasionally relies on the courts. It could also just be expert smart contract authors. Hard to say at this point.

Another novelty is the addition of biometric security. This is quickly becoming a buzzword, so it should be taken with a grain of salt. Nevertheless, only a few blockchain-based technologies have successfully integrated it, and this is in part due to the potential of compromise of such information via hacking and other means.

Who’s Behind It

Lots of issues with this part of the project. It’s hard to make heads or tails of the biography of Vlad Mitrofanov:

Vladislav is an entrepreneur with the software engineer education. Has a unique experience above 10 years of business development in various industries with the application of social architecture within the working community. Vladislav is founder of the scientific approach of applied methods Cryptonautic in the blockchain and the invisible but described smart sphere based on neural networks and quantum cryptography.

What exactly “founder of the scientific approach of applied methods Cryptonautic in the blockchain” is supposed to mean, it’s hard to decipher, even forgiving poor English skills (which, when dealing with financial ventures, is not a great idea.) He appears to have previously worked at a company called Device Me that brings up nothing when you search it on the web, which doesn’t mean it doesn’t exist but rather that it’s probably in Russian but not English somewhere or other.

Developer Andrey Pintsev, on the other hand, appears to have a good deal of experience in software development, which is needed given the lack of information on some of the others here. Pintsev was a lead software engineer at Net Cracker, a business-oriented software company based in Massachussetts.

CTO Evgeniy Ilyushin developed software for a Russian university in Moscow and has extensively worked for PRADO Group, which is a real estate firm in Russia.

Then we have the red herring of Dmitry, who gives us no profile photo, links, or real background information. This is a huge offense in terms of safety ratings. Why even list him at all? It serves to do nothing but raise suspicion. He is listed as the “Chief Scientist,” and this is all we get regarding him:

We previously docked Adel a full point (later updated) for failing to tell us anything about Robert Gasch, their senior architect. BitCAD will get even worse treatment for having several other problems, but we’ll get to that after the investment details.

Investment Details

The BitCAD ICO was originally supposed to begin on May 4th, but then they needed another week to get their biometric verification solution in place. Unfortunately, that week has passed and they are still not live with the ICO. In one sense, this is a plus because they are not trying to get their hands on your money before they are ready to use it. We must sometimes be forgiving of things like this, as code is hard work and developing new solutions is even harder work than maintaining existing ones.

Whenever it does go live, the ICO will be at ico.bitcad.io. The initial price will be close to a dollar per BCO, purchasable in at least Bitcoin and Ether. It is supposed to run for four weeks. As you can see in this chart initially posted for the 5/4 assumed launch date, you get more tokens the earlier you buy in:

The total token supply will be 100 million tokens, and they will be distributed in the following fashion:

  • 51 million will be sold during the crowdsale.
  • 20 million “among founders, early backers and the development team. Founders, early backers and the development team are rewarded with BitCAD tokens for their efforts, resources, and technologies contributed to the development of the BitCAD.”
  • 2 million will be given out in “bounties,” which are incentives for people to expand and support the platform.
  • The remaining coins will be spent building the platform out, which could in some way also enrich the people in category 2 (above).

The Verdict

Folks, we might have a loser on our hands. As first noted, this platform is not offering a lot in terms of novelty. People will be able to implement biometric verification, tracking, and all of the above into Aragon and other platforms. Novelty is not all that matters, good branding and management also count. We don’t appear to see much of that here, as well as low-information in general. A poorly written whitepaper tops it off, along with a nearly 49% withholding of coins for various purposes to the development team. If the goal is for the coins to be worth $1 each, then a 49 million dollar funding round is hard to achieve for even truly novel and well-developed ideas!

Given that we originally rated Adel, which has an active team, good information, and great branding, a 4.9 on a scale of 0 to 10, it would be totally unfair to give BitCAD any higher than a 3.75.

At least in terms of ICO material. If the team is truly dedicated to what they are doing, they will realize some of the problems noted and they will work to solve them over time. They could recover, that is, and become a good investment vehicle as well as platform. But at present they don’t appear serious enough about what their doing. This could be due to a lack of real experience at the executive level, which is always valuable. Some lessons must be learned the hard way. One thing is for certain, this author won’t be buying or holding any BCO – but that doesn’t mean others with more liquid in their investment account shouldn’t take a long shot on them. However, with such a high initial offering price, it seems unlikely that many will, which only increases the risk of extreme negative volatility for those who do.

If your heart tells you to invest and your head takes no issue with the information provided above, then, please, don’t let this author stop you from placing your bet on this horse. This author is not opposed to being proven wrong, not by any stretch.

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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  1. schneeman

    May 19, 2017 at 11:00 am

    Will you write any comment about the second round of the Aeternity IPO? http://www.aeternity.com/

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ICO Analysis: Verasity (VRA)

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Verasity is a video-sharing platform that caters to content creators and rewards viewers with VERA tokens just for watching content, sharing videos, watching ads and for referrals. Over the past few years, brands have shifted their advertising model to allow influencers to share products with their audience. This gives products a much more personal touch and translates to better conversions.

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Verasity will provide a way for viewers to help support their favorite channels by the use of VeraSparks. VeraSparks is a smart contract that allows viewers to buy and own a portion of a channel, and be rewarded with profits especially in future growth.

How is Verasity different than the competition in this field? Verasity is the only platform combining the following: Decentralized Proprietary Blockchain, Proof of View (PoV) – patent pending, Watch and Earn, Centralized Video Distribution, VeraSparks and the Spark Marketplace, and multiple ways for creators and users to earn VERA tokens. Just one of Veracity’s features, Proof of View (PoV), will help solve the problem of fake reviews that affect creators and advertisers.

Token

The VERA token is an ERC-20 token used as a payment method between brands and creators directly ensuring that brand placements are verified through Verasity’s Proof of View technology. Not only do brands now have direct access to content creators, but advertisers have the opportunity to reward viewers. Views are recorded on the blockchain so that validating viewer interaction is easily auditable. Proof of View is Verasity’s Patent Pending (*US and international patent pending, application number 62627285) system that provides more accurate audience metrics than traditional methods.

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Team

The list of team members and advisers on their website is quite extensive compared to the majority of ICOs. The team and advisers are showing commitment to the project with team tokens locked for 18 months and advisor tokens locked for 9 months. A few team members include: 

David Orman – CEO & Co-Founder

  • Founding Partner – Hatch-House
  • Founder – Namro Ventures Ltd
  • Advisor – Carabiner Partners
  • Formerly VP of Joost

David Rowe – Co-Founder

  • CEO – Black Green Capital
  • Founder – Hydro66
  • Founder – Easynet Group
  • Former Managing Board Member – Sky

Chris Gale – Co-Founder

  • Founder & CEO – Odyssey Mobile
  • Founder – TouchTab
  • Former CEO – Level Up Media Ltd
  • Crypto Investor & Blockchain Advisor

Adam Simmons – Co-Founder

  • Former VP Marketing – Level Up Media Ltd
  • Owner – Madals TV

Advisers include: 

Dr. Christian Jaag – Advisor

  • Founder – Cryptoeconomics
  • Managing Partner – Swiss Economics
  • Lecturer – Universities of St. Galen and Zurich

Matt Heiman – Advisor

  • Founder – Diagonal View
  • Founder – Mobix Trading
  • Founding Investor – Just Giving
  • Adviser – Channel 4, Visimo, The Cloud, Palringo

Jin Young Choi – Verasity Ambassador for Asia

  • CEO – Bitbank
  • CEO – Woorim Holdings
  • CEO – East Nine Company Ltd
  • CEO – Vision Group Company Ltd
  • Permanent CEO – D!conomy LAB
  • Executive Commissioner of World Franchise Council
  • Former Mayor of Namon City

Joel Kovshoff – Advisor

  • Founder and CEO – MyICOPool
  • Founder and CEO – Athena Trading Bot
  • Blockchain Advisor and Educator
  • A complete list of team members and advisors can be found at verasity.io.

Verdict

Verasity will use blockchain technology to finally have a transparent and reliable solution to the many problems facing the video sharing industry. Some of the key features of Verasity’s blockchain technologies are: Verasity High-Performance Blockchain, VERA Transactions, Proof of View (patent pending) and DPoS. All of the videos run off of VeraPlayer, which is a blockchain enabled video player that allows users to view content securely from many mobile and desktop devices without the need to install additional software. Verasity has partnered with Akamai, a leading global content distribution network. This enables Verasity to deliver over 8 PetaBytes of video data per month, allowing them to scale quickly. If Verasity continues to deliver on the benchmarks outlined on their roadmap, they could quickly become a major player in this highly competitive field.

Risks

  • Although Verasity is unique with their own blockchain and PoV, it still has competition such as Steem, Basic Attention Token, Props, and Flixxo. -1.25
  • The hard cap is on the high side at 6,245,750,000 VRA which equates to over $46M USD. -1.5

Growth Potential

  • Verasity has a large and experienced team along with top-notch advisers that are capable of building and scaling the company successfully. +4
  • Having multiple ways to earn for creators and viewers has the potential to grow at a fast pace while their partnership with Akamai will allow for scalability. Basic Attention Token may use Verasity as its default video player. +3.5
  • Hype and community are important to create exposure for ICOs. Verasity has over 41k telegram members, 10k Twitter followers, and 237k Facebook followers. +2.5

Disposition

Blockchain platforms are in high demand right now. Verasity is no exception. With internet traffic being worth $312 billion by 2021, online video is set to account for 82% of all traffic. Company giants such as Facebook and Google generated $191 billion in advertising revenue in 2017. Personal data has become the new commodity and Verasity aims to reward creators and content publishers. Verasity is 100% SICOP compliant (Sustainable ICOs Protocol) which defines rules and methodology to determine whether ICOs are secure, follow good practices and ethical rules. Verasity is one of the few ICOs that is completely compliant. In an ICO atmosphere riddled with scams, this gives Verasity a head start. Due to the enormous potential as a successful first mover and the fact that they have followed very strict rules to be ethically compliant, Verasity receives a rating of 7.25 out of 10.

Investment Details

  • Symbol: VRA
  • Price: 1 VRA = 0.0075 USD increases by 1% per 24 hours during sale
  • MVP/Prototype: Available
  • Platform: Ethereum
  • Payments Accepted: ETH, BTC
  • Total Token Supply: 12,491,500,000
  • Hard Cap: 6,245,750,000 VRA
  • Min Purchase: 10,000 VRA
  • Restricted Areas: USA (Accredited only), Cayman Islands, North Korea, Somalia, Yemen

Learn more about Verasity:
Website
Whitepaper
Token Sale Info

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 36 rated postsKent Hamilton - ICO Analyst on Hacked and Founder of CryptoDayTrader.io - ICO Insider Info




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ICO Analysis: Cardium

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Venture capitalist Anthony Pompliano of Morgan Creek Blockchain Capital is looking to “tokenize the world,” and he recently said that eventually, all assets will be on the blockchain. He might get his wish sooner than he thinks, as evidenced by one of the latest blockchain startups planning an ICO.

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Russia-based Cardium basically brings FitBit to the blockchain with a proprietary device dubbed fitness tracker that’s similarly worn on the wrist and is the heart of the project. Cardium, which is designed to tackle the issue of obesity and the chronic diseases it leaves in its wake, like diabetes and cancer, tokenizes daily activity and incentives users with a digital currency as a reward.

It’s a massive ecosystem, one comprised not only of a native digital currency but also a partner gym-fueled mining pool that generates additional tokens that fuel the platform. The reason for gym-mining is to motivate members to participate in high-speed mining activity at participating gyms and while they’re there, exercising and socializing.

The problem Cardium is looking to solve is real, as evidenced by predictions for excess weight and obesity to affect 20% of the global population by 2025. These issues are especially pervasive in but not limited to developing nations. Cardium believes that by incentivizing its members with a reward for physical activity, whether high-intensity or moderate, people will prioritize cardiovascular activity. Cardium is looking to ride the wave of the second generation of wearable devices, one that Cardium believes will work in tandem with the Internet of Things (IoT) technology for autonomous smart devices.

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Here are a few of the features of its device:

  • “Tracking the number of steps and calories and setting goals”
  • “Monitoring the effectiveness and quality of sleep”
  • “Heart rate measurement

For every calorie users burn, they receive Cardium tokens.

Token

Cardium (CAD) is an ERC-20 smart-contract fueled token on the Ethereum network. CAD tokens that are generated from mining can be directed toward the partner network, such as gym membership discounts and sports product promotions, for instance. Cardium estimates that by consuming 2,000 KCALs per day, users can earn 2.64 CAD tokens daily based on the number of calories burned. Cardium has placed a ceiling on the lifetime number of tokens at 475,372,000,000 based on expectations to reach 100 million people over a decade. Any unused tokens will be burned.

Source: Cardium White Paper

Team

Cardium’s management team is comprised of four co-founders.

Philipp Klimov is founder and CEO. He boasts experience at leading Russian cybersecurity firm Kaspersky and experience in DDoS prevention, which bolsters the security profile of Cardium.

Alexander Perminov, anothe co-founder, specializes in data analytics.

Co-Founder Roman Chistyakov brings two decades of experience at major Russian corporations to the table, including Accenture, Rosneft and others.

Sergey Chernikov, co-founder and CTO, specializes in “database design, performance and high-load systems.”

Verdict

Cardium makes it difficult to disagree with physical fitness on the blockchain, and the partner network adds another layer of engagement. Investors should bear in mind, however, that the fitness tracker device wasn’t even a twinkle in the eye of its developers a year ago. It was born at the height of the cryptocurrency fever in December 2017.

While that doesn’t undermine the deal, it does increase the risk. Cardium must promote their brand and people must be willing to use their ecosystem. Otherwise, the reward tokens lose their appeal. If their roadmap materializes, this project could be a winner.

Risks

  • Cardium is a new concept that began at year-end 2017. While the startup has a defined roadmap through year-end 2018, it’s unclear if their fitness tracker is in development yet (samples are being tested this month, according to the company’s roadmap). There’s no history of performance or guarantee the market has room for another fitness tracker. -2.5
  • This brings up another risk, which is the possibility that a company like FitBit, that has proven sales, or worse Google or Apple, which similarly boast wearable products, could decide to integrate blockchain technology and issue digital tokens, which would raise the competition stakes significantly. -2

Growth Opportunity

  • Demand for wearable devices is on the rise, as illustrated below. Meanwhile, and while this part is unfortunate, the number of people with an excessive body mass index (BMI) is also increasing. Cardium has figured out a way to capitalize on each of these trends while at the same time improving the health of the global population. +4

Source: Cardium White Paper

  • Even though Cardium hasn’t generated any sales yet, they have a defined path to do so. The company will generate revenue from sales of the fitness tracker, a device by which all physical activity is measured and sent back to a smartphone and later to Cardium. They expect in year one to “attract” 10 million people and generate EBITDA of USD 150 million. +3
  • Innovation. Cardium’s concept of tokenizing daily activities could be brilliant. Consider the former wildly popular US television competition, “The Biggest Loser”. For 17 seasons, overweight contestants were tasked with losing weight by the carrot and stick method including a USD 250,000 prize reserved for one lucky winner. +3.5
  • Cardium is being advised by Moscow-based Conner & Company for the ICO. This relationship provides greater transparency to potential ICO participants and is a plus. +1.5

Disposition

We arrive at a score of 7.5 out of 10 for the Cardium ICO.

Investment Details

  • Token Type: Utility
  • Platform: ERC20/Ethereum
  • Symbol: CAD
  • Public Crowdsale: June 1 to June 30, 2018
  • Number of Tokens to be Issued: 475,372,000,000
  • Price: One CAD = USD 0.25 (Participants who invest more than USD 250 will receive a free fitness tracker device.)
  • Payment Method: Ethereum
  • Jurisdiction Banned: The United States and South Korea

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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4.4 stars on average, based on 7 rated postsGerelyn has been covering ICOs and the cryptocurrency market since mid-2017. She's also reported on fintech more broadly in addition to asset management, having previously specialized in institutional investing. Full disclosure, she's invested in bitcoin.




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ICO Analysis: Layer Protocol (LRX)

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With the sharing economy industry poised to soon surpass $40 billion in revenues, the profit potential is massive. Companies such as Airbnb, Uber, and Zipcar depend on user ratings and reviews to give potential customers insight into assets or services before they commit to using them. The issue with the current reputation management system is that it is exclusive to each company and not shared. This allows users with bad reviews to go from one company to another.

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Layer Protocol will solve this issue and tap into this enormous industry by allowing companies to share user reputation history while maintaining security utilizing the blockchain. Layer Protocol is a borderless reputation and incentive system designed to unify the sharing economy companies around the world. Layer Protocol will help establish decentralized reputations that can move freely from sharing platform to sharing platform.

Token

LRX is an ERC20 token that will provide economic incentives for scalable computation of reputation scores through master nodes, and drives community governance. Companies using Layer are also incentivized to use LRX for rewards and accept LRX for payments. Layer Protocol has a partnership with Spin, North America’s leading electric personal mobility company, which will give their blockchain protocol and LRX use from the onset. Spin has over 70 markets in the U.S., with thousands of scooters and bikes on the street, and has been heavily featured on The New York Times, CNN, Bloomberg, and The Washington Post. As Layer’s first partner, Spin will use Layer to power their reputation system, and accept the LRX token as payment for rentals, in addition to fiat.

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There will be a total supply of 1 billion LRX tokens with 400 million available for purchase during the token sale. The token price is 1 LRX = $0.0375 USD with a hard cap of $15,000,000 USD. Team tokens will be vested for a 2-year period.

Team

The Layer Protocol team appears solid bringing leadership and experience from companies such as Y Combinator, Lyft, Samsung, Fitbit, and Stanford.

Team member Euwyn Poon is an entrepreneur, lawyer and software engineer who has been involved in the blockchain industry for five years. In 2014, he co-founded Delta, one of the first projects to offer interest-bearing bitcoin accounts, which was backed by Y Combinator, Initialized Capital, and Winklevoss Capital. He graduated from Cornell and has spoken at CoinSummit London and Inside Bitcoins and has been featured on Bloomberg, Wall Street Journal, New York Times, Forbes, Vice, CNBC and Fox Business Network.

Advisers include:

  • David Chen: Former Partner at Lightspeed
  • Kenzi Wang: General Partner at AU21, a blockchain fund
  • Dmitry Grishin: Co-founder of Grishin Robotics, Mail.ru (DST), one of Russia’s largest internet companies
  • Peter Szeli: Partner at Skyline Capital Group
  • Michael Ma: General Partner at Liquid 2 Ventures
  • Gee Chuang: Co-founder of Ink Protocoland Listia
  • Josh Fraser: Co-founder of Origin Protocol
  • Matthew Liu: Co-founder of Origin Protocol
  • Firoz Khan: Founder of Decentralised Chain
  • Chandler Guo: Blockchain investor (ETH, NEO, Qtum, Binance, Huobi, Gate.io)

Verdict

Layer Protocol will provide economic incentives for scalable computation of reputation scores, which will encourage adoption of the protocol and drive community governance. As well as a decentralized reputation system for the global sharing economy, Layer Protocol aims to be a decentralized credit scoring agency which will help accelerate the growth of the sharing economy. If mass adoption and implementation occur, the future looks bright for Layer Protocol.

Risks

  • Spin has committed to adopting Layer Protocol as its de facto reputation, rewards, and payment system. There is an internal prototype that’s being tested with Spin, but it’s not open sourced or on the testnet yet. -2
  • As with all industries that can benefit from blockchain technology, there will be competitors to Layer Protocol, such as Reputoken and others are sure to follow. However, Layer Protocol does have a leg up on the competition with their partnership with Spin. -1

Growth Potential

  • Having partnerships clearly increases the chance of success for an ICO. As well as having Spin set to use Layer Protocol, the company has also partnered with other blockchain players, including Origin Protocol, Insights Network, and Quantstamp. +4
  • The team members and advisers bring the necessary experience to achieve the project’s goals. The team is also showing commitment to the success of the project by having a 2-year vesting period. +3.5
  • Savvy investors searching for projects that include the option to own masternodes will be pleased to learn that masternodes will be available with LRX. +2.5

Disposition

2018 is an exciting time for blockchain technology. So much innovation is happening with new ICOs launching on a daily basis. Many of these ICOs have nothing more than a whitepaper and are created without solid use cases. Spin has committed to using Layer Protocol which grants a use case from day one. As more sharing economy companies come onboard, Layer Protocol has the potential to be one of the ICO success stories in 2018. Layer Protocol receives a 7 out of 10 rating.

Investment Details

  • Token Symbol: LRX
  • Platform: Ethereum
  • Token Price: 1 LRX = 0.0375 USD
  • Token Supply: 1,000,000,000 LRX
  • Available for Purchase: 400,000,000 LRX
  • Hard Cap: $15,000,000 USD
  • Pre-Sale: On-Going
  • Main Sale: TBA
  • Payments Accepted: ETH

For more information regarding Layer Protocol:

Website: layerprotocol.com
Telegram: t.me/layerprotocol

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 36 rated postsKent Hamilton - ICO Analyst on Hacked and Founder of CryptoDayTrader.io - ICO Insider Info




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