Sharpe Capital is primarily an investment company whose core product is creating multiple approaches to understanding the market dynamics of both equities and blockchain assets. The multiple approaches to understanding market dynamics include sentiment analysis, quantitative trading, machine learning, AI and linguistic analysis.
Analysts at existing hedge funds/investment funds rely on quantitative and fundamental trading models where the value of an asset is tied to its micro and macroeconomic performance. Analysts hope that the trading value of the asset will converge on its “intrinsic value” over time and earn them returns on undervalued assets. Intrinsic value is the value that the analysts calculate based on various economic indicators. Readers familiar with investment analysis will understand these concepts with ease.
However, generating returns based on the calculated search of intrinsic values of undervalued assets is not so easy. Investor sentiment plays a huge role in asset valuation resulting in asset prices consistently diverging from their intrinsic values. For example, Tesla has higher market capitalization than Ford, but does it deserve that high a valuation? In my opinion, no! But investor sentiment is very positive towards Tesla, resulting in its higher market cap.
So, how do you gauge investor sentiment? This is where Sharpe Capital comes in.
From the perspective of a user who visits Sharpe Capital for the first time, the platform pays Ether for his views on a particular asset. The user is given recent updates about the assets and his opinion is asked. A user’s opinion carries weight based on his previous responses (a reputation system) and the amount of SHP token holding. The payouts on correct opinion will be given accordingly. Opinions of hundreds of thousands of users are evaluated to gauge the overall sentiment about the asset.
Sharpe Capital’s investment analysis methodology is not just sentiment analysis, but also takes into consideration a host of factors like fundamental analysis (macro, micro indicators), linguistic analysis (sentiments, emotions, contextual framing from blogs, twitter feeds, etc.), and machine learning (continuous learning from past experiences).
Sharpe Capital will feed this information into its proprietary investment fund, whose returns will be distributed among all token holders.
The data generated from sentiment analysis and the linguistic analysis will be sold to buyers like investment funds and researchers.
Sharpe Capital is also creating internal auditing tools and enterprise-grade blockchain solutions for hedge funds and corporate clients for transparency and accountability.
The SHP token will serve several functions on Sharpe Capital’s platform. The SHP tokens will give access to the users to earn rewards in ether by voting on bullish versus bearish sentiment of an asset on the Sharpe Capital sentiment platform.
Hedge funds and institutional investors will be able to access information within Sharpe Capital’s Quantitative Trading Model through SHP fees. SHP tokens will help holders participate in governance for Sharpe Capital.
Looking ahead, as regulatory clarity emerges, Sharpe Capital will issue SCDs (Sharpe Crypto Derivatives), a cryptocurrency token that will be tied to the firm’s proprietary investment fund. Holders of SCDs will be entitled to receive dividends from the proprietary fund.
SCDs will have bi-annual Ethereum payouts and will be distributed 1:1 with SHP at a later date.
The ICO began on 13th November and will last until 5th February 2018. The minimum contribution will be $100. The SHP token is valued at 2000 SHPs for 1 ETH. For each 2,000 SHP issued, an additional 2,000 SHP will be held in reserve for future fundraising and an additional 1,000 will be distributed to Sharpe Capital founders and community members for coming platform development for a total distribution of 5,000 SHP for 1 ETH. There is a hard cap of $20 mn for the raise.
40% of the funds raised will be used for the investment fund, while 20% for development and operations.
The bonus structure begins only after $1,500 contributions. You can check out the details here.
According to the company, “The Sharpe Capital team is comprised of a diverse group of experts across the fields of quantitative modeling, financial engineering, linguistic analysis, international law & regulatory requirements.”
There are five members of the core team. Chief Investment Officer James Butler has a Ph.D. in complex system modeling and is responsible for overseeing the development of the Sharpe Capital Investment Platform. This platform was conceived by Butler in collaboration with CEO Lewis M. Barber.
The development of novel approaches to linguistic analysis is supported by leading linguist and anthropologist Mieke Vandenbroucke Ph.D., a Fulbright Scholar and Visiting Researcher at the University of California, Berkeley who is also one of the advisers. There are five other advisers, prominent among them being Dimitri Chupryna, who is the co-founder of TaaS. TaaS will be used for extensive testing of the investment platform.
The team appears solid, with advisers from varied background. One aspect which I personally find somewhat negative is that most of the members, especially the ones developing the investment platform, belong to an academic background rather than one rooted in investment banking. I think this factor is quite relevant for this industry.
Let me begin with how well the Whitepaper is written. The team has thought through the project well, with a detailed explanation of the Sharpe Investment Platform. Discussing the technicalities is beyond the scope of this review, but interested readers can go through the document for more information.
That being said, it is quite difficult to judge the quality of an Investment Platform or methodology without historical returns or a product version. The alpha will launch on 12th December with focus on the sentiment analysis part.
Cindicator can be considered the closest competitor, who have been working on the project since November 2014. They have an alpha version and are developing the product from insights coming in from a very active community. Sharpe Capital has some advantages in terms of product quality like the inclusion of linguistic analysis, governance; but then what is stopping a well-funded platform like Cindicator from including these in its product.
Of course, there is space for multiple competing companies, but a segment like sentiment analysis will hold value for only if the platform has thousands of users voting on the platform.
- Sentiment analysis will not hold much value if Sharpe Capital is not able to attract enough users. Also, would hedge funds or investment funds find value in sentiments of retail speculators? -2
- Along with Cindicator, many other companies are working on the same domain. -2
- The investment analysis methodology although thoroughly developed is purely academic at this moment. -1
- There are concerns whether the AI based portfolio manager can generate returns, especially in the crypto space where there is so much flux. -1
- The product is better than the competitors at this moment. +4
- Rewards for prediction without the loss of stake is a massive incentive for users to participate on the platform. +3
- The alpha version will be launching soon on 12th December. The alpha version launch will be a big credibility boost for the project. +2
- Once the regulatory approvals for SCD tokens are obtained, Sharpe Capital can expand to other dividend based funds. +0.5
- There will be demand for the enterprise-grade blockchain solutions for hedge funds and corporate clients once regulations demanding more transparency start getting hold. +1
We arrive at a score of +4.5 out of 10 for Sharpe Capital. The score can improve +2 points depending on the reception of the alpha version once it launches on the 12th of December.
The ICO began on 13th November. Non-accredited US residents, Chinese and Singapore residents are restricted from the sale. You can participate in the ICO here.
Disclaimer: Writer does not hold an investment position in Sharpe Capital.
Featured image courtesy of Shutterstock.
ICO Analysis: Majato
Blockchain and Cannabis are the two fasting growing industries one can think of. And it just so happens that they mesh perfectly with each other. Although laws are slowly changing in jurisdictions where cannabis has become legal, traditional banking for this industry remains sketchy, businesses are being forced to deal in cold hard cash. Therefore, tokenizing the entire industry from seed to sale seems like a no-brainer.
Majato plans to grow and distribute cannabis in countries where it is legal. On top of that, they will have an interactive platform to unite the cannabis market participants.
“The use of blockchain as the core technology will make all stages of production, distribution and even consumption of cannabis products completely transparent and clear for all market participants.”
They will first launch their project in the United States, specifically California. Their main goal is to have a full scale, seed to sale, production company. They will use their funds raised during the presale to fill out legal paperwork, acquire land, and start producing Cannabis.
The 2nd part of this project is the platform, which will bring together the cannabis industry in general and its standalone participants, including scientific and research labs, producers and suppliers of various cannabis products, equipment, seeds, and consumers. This transparent and secure ecosystem will allow streamlining of product sales, and simplified transactions.
One of the key goals of the project is to develop a “Gold Quality Standard” which will validate every product as being produced using the best strains, and high quality growing methods. They talk about the “Gold Quality Standard” in the whitepaper for way too long, revealing their own ignorance about the cannabis industry.
Their ultimate goal is to become the uniform payment instrument for all things cannabis worldwide
According to the whitepaper, the purpose of the MJT token is the following;
- Direct receipt by the MJT Owners of the Product in the form of Final Product or Raw Product in the relevant POS against settlement of the relevant number of the MJT Tokens
- Ordering the Product for delivery via the Platform in those Jurisdictions where it is/would be allowed under the law
- Discounts on third-party products purchased with MJT token in dispensaries
- Use the MJT Token for internal Project purposes and separate matters relating to its implementation (for example, when submitting feedback regarding the quality of the distributed Product).
During the initial stages of sale (i.e. pre-sale and sale) of the MJT token a total number of 60,000,000 MJT Tokens (Project’s hard cap) will be distributed, and the price will be 0,0011 ETH per token during pre-sale and 0,0033 ETH per token during the main sale stage.
Total supply: 60 million (?)
Presale: Dec 20. 10 million MJT token hardcap, 800,000 softcap .0011 ETH per token (currently $0.77) http://majato.io/
ICO sale: Apr 2018. .0033 ETH per token
All unsold tokens will be burned. And all tokens used to buy cannabis products with from Majato, in the future, will also be burned.
This team of eight is a hodge-podge of Russian, American, and German lawyers. At least that’s what it looks like, most of them come from a law background including their Founder and CEO, Mike Tretyak. Tretyak, a journeyman IP lawyer, who has no experience in large-scale cannabis farming. In fact, I went into their telegram and asked if any member on their team has experience with growing cannabis? My question got sidestepped, and when I pushed for an answer, I got called rude. I then asked if anyone on their team has worked together and had success in the past? The moderator told me I was out of line to ask such a personal question.
Although it is still just the presale, the lack of community around this team is extremely concerning. There is very little support on their Telegram and Twitter.
It doesn’t seem like they have what it takes to pull off such a massive project as Majato.
As a lifelong cannaseur, who currently is in Colorado, I feel like I am especially qualified to analyze this ICO.
Although owning a piece of this fast growing cannabis industry is an attractive proposition, this particular project is way too far fetched. The legal hurdles they face in order to accomplish what they are trying to do, are probably insurmountable. That being said, they do have a team filled with lawyers, if they defy logic and get this project successful running, the gains for presale investors could be huge.
There is currently no way to legally ship Cannabis. This doesn’t seem likely to change anytime soon. Therefore, the only MJT token holders that will be able to benefit by trading their tokens for cannabis, are the ones that live within traveling distance of Majato’s imaginary future Cali stores. This leaves very few benefits for token holders
- Pretty sure this project is considered illegal. Having a bunch of contributors to marijuana growing/selling, from different worldwide jurisdictions, can’t be legal… can it? -3
- They have absolutely nothing so far, but a whitepaper. They want to produce and distribute cannabis to the entire world, starting with the jurisdictions which its legal. The problem is, it’s illegal to ship cannabis ANYWHERE. They don’t seem very concerned about this. -5
- As far as I know, nobody on their team has experience with large-scale cannabis farming. In their whitepaper, they break down what they estimate the production costs will be. It looks amateurish and fake. And it’s obvious they have zero clue how this industry works. They have thousands of dollars set aside in their budget for “seeds”, which is hilarious because they don’t know about cloning. Nowadays plants grown on a large scale are clipped and cloned from a mother plant. Seeds are only used for all natural outdoor grows. -3
- A forecast done by Arcview shows the U.S. legal cannabis market will grow by 26% next year, and should hit $21 billion by 2021, $7 bill of that being California alone. This industry will only grow. Majatos roadmap says they will become a full-fledged, cannabis producing company by 2020. Here’s a quick summary of their roadmap +3
Dec 17- Jan 18: presale
Feb 18- Apr 18: Acquir land, obtain licenses/permits, form corporate structure for implementing project
Apr 18-June 18: stage 2 of the MJT token sale.
July 18- May 19: Production of batch 1 of product, establishing distribution channels, Platform R&D
Dec 18-Dec 19: Commencement of offering product to MJT owners
- If they have a successful ICO, and follow through, they will first start production in California. As just stated, Cali is forecasted to have over $7 billion in cannabis sales in 2021. It’s a shame this project isn’t specifically for California. It seems way more doable if they kept their focus on just the one jurisdiction +2
This ambitious project is too early, mostly illegal, and lead by a less than stellar team. One almost wants to call it the “H” word. -4 out of 10
Presale starts December 20th.
Featured image courtesy of Shutterstock
ICO Analysis: Rentberry
Rentberry is offering a decentralized home rental platform for long-term rentals, allowing for tenants and landlords to complete all rent-related tasks in a single location, while also eliminating the need for third-party middlemen and all.
The Rentberry ICO aims to transform the existing Rentberry platform, which has been around since 2015. The current long-term rental platform manages every step of the rental process, including everything from open houses to rent payments.
Rentberry increases transparency for renters employing an auctioning protocol, where tenants can customize their offers based on the competition and demand for a specific property. The protocol also provides landlords a tenant score that is calculated based on reviews, public information, and rental history.
Rentberry uses the blockchain to deploy their token (BERRY) to the existing Rentberry ecosystem. BERRY is to be used to pay rent and other third party services such as maintenance and housekeeping, as well as allowing roommates to split rent.
Rentberry plans to use the raised funds to fuel their international expansion and development of new features including the tenant scoring system, advanced apartment search algorithms, and crowdsourced community expansion.
Price: 1 ETH = 2,500 BERRY
Accepting: ETH, BTC
Minimum investment: 0.1 ETH / 250 BERRY
Soft cap: 3,000,000 USD
Hard cap: 30,000,000 USD
Rentberry has been around since 2015, and is headquartered in San Francisco, CA.
The CEO, Alex Lubinsky has history as a financial analyst at Cisco, a consultant at Deloitte, and worked at several investment firms.
The CTO, Aleksey Perfilov, studied Computer Science at UC Berkeley, then received a degree in Management Science and Engineering at Stanford. He has experience as a software engineer at Phoenix Technologies, Hi5, Altera, and Amazon Music.
- The Rentberry team has quite a bit of work on their hands when it comes to onboarding new tenants. Their proprietary tenant scoring protocol is likely going to need a bunch of data to actually be effective. Being one of the main selling points for landlords, the tenant scoring system is heavily reliant on tenant adoption, which could pose to be a bottleneck to the process. They’re aiming to process 500,000 rental applications with 1,000,000 rental properties in 2018, and then 3.5m rental applications with 6m rental properties in 2019. -3
- I’m a bit wary of their ICO bonus structure. I understand use of bonuses to push incentivization, but as new investors hear about the ICO moving forward seeing that they’re getting less favorable terms, they’ll be less likely to buy into the platform. The ICO bonus structure is as follows (-2):
- Dec 5 – Dec 19 : 1 ETH = 2,500 BERRY + 33% Bonus
- Dec 20 – Dec 26 : 1 ETH = 2,500 BERRY + 27% Bonus
- Dec 27 – Jan 16 : 1 ETH = 2,500 BERRY + 20% Bonus
- Jan 17 – Jan 30 : 1 ETH = 2,500 BERRY + 13% Bonus
- Jan 31 – Feb 13: 1 ETH = 2,500 BERRY + 7% Bonus
- If you’ve ever rented a place or owned a rental property, you’re likely aware of the headache that comes with each new location or tenant. What I like about Rentberry is that it aims to make the process much smoother. +1
- As someone who lives in New York City, the concept of rental transparency is hazy at best for me. The city is littered with people on leases who happen to be subleasing to other tenants for more money than the lease is worth. Cities like NYC such as San Francisco are all undergoing their own housing crises for whatever reasons, and a lack of transparency in the rental system isn’t helping at all. If Rentberry can change that, it’ll solve a huge issue. +2
- BERRY makes it possible for expats and migrants living in other countries to facilitate the process of renting out their properties. +2
- Rentberry has been around for a few years and has established itself as a relatively successful business. It has over 110,000 users and 180,000 properties. +3
- The company has also raised over $4 million from a handful of VC funds and high-profile investors from 11 countries. +2
- Rentberry also noted that it will use 15% of the token sale proceeds to buy short-term rental properties, and everyone who participates in the ICO is going to become a member of the “Rentberry Club.” Buying physical real estate makes sense for this company and it’s a proactive approach to grow their network of assets. It’s also a pretty cool perk for ICO investors. +2
We arrive at a +7 for Rentberry.
I really like the application of the blockchain here to encourage international property owners to interact with their properties anywhere in the world. Rentberry’s team may be capable of solving several issues in the long-term rental space, and if executed correctly, would make life much easier (and more cost and time effective) for hundreds of thousands of tenants and landlords.
The Rentberry ICO launched on December 5, and will continue until March 1st, 2018.
Check out their website to learn more.
ICO Analysis: Deepbrain Chain
Deepbrain Chain will provide a low-cost, private, flexible, secure, and decentralized artificial intelligence computing platform for artificial intelligence products.
Coming out of China, based on NEO, Deepbrain Chain is an incredibly difficult whitepaper to read. Many concepts are both lost in translation on paper, and in my simple brain.
I came across a Reddit post from a man named crypto_oxford, who does a great job summarizing.
“It is a data computation platform and a Data trading platform that uses distributed spare computing ressources, makes AI computational demands cheaper, protects against data leakage via hacking, secures the seperation of data ownership and usage rights, and secures intellectual property for the data and for the products.”
They figure to reduce the cost of AI by 70% by making it minable on the blockchain. I cannot verify these claims, I am no expert in this field. Here’s a good example possible investors face when trying to learn about this project. It sounds great, but what does it really mean?
“The founding team believes that DeepBrain Chain is a project that has been verified by the market, has huge market scale and significant application value, lets the process and economic value associated, and is gradually issued with the core business sharing storage and the mechanism of computation capacity of mining. Each token corresponds to the computational value of the service provided during its issue, and is a truly valuable asset and digital currency that has already landed. Due to the difficulty of issuing, the value of the flow needed by every new token will increase. The earlier one holds, the more the expected value of the market will be.”
- NEO platform (nep 5 token)
- A max hard cap of $15 million,
- There’s a total supply of 10 billion Deepbrain Chain (DBT) tokens. 50% of these will be mined over time.
- 1.5 billion tokens will be for sale
- 600 million sold during the Presale, which ended 10 days ago, and was almost impossible to get in.
- Token sale stars Dec 15th. You must fill out a KYC form to be eligible. No USA or China allowed
Only 1.5 billion of the total 10 billion tokens will be for sale.
600 million in the presale, and 900 million in the public sale
Use of funds. 55% R&D, 25% marketing, 10% daily operations, 8 % incentives, 2% patent fees
Based in China? The team is doing things. They recently won 1st and 2nd place prizes in Academic Sector & Enterprise of SMP, at the Chinese Man-Machine Dialogue Field Authority Evaluation Contest. This contest had over 30 of Chinas best competing.
Their resume’s check out pretty well. And just look at these faces… JACKPOT!
When it comes to the technical side of this project, I am out of my element. They have a hard cap of $15 million, $6 million of that already came from private investors, one of which being NEO, who funded them $1 million.This gives them serious street cred.
AI data computation, neuro networks, machine learning, all these concepts are no doubt where our world is going. On Deepbrain Chains platform, one can compute and trade data. They have a working platform with more than 1,000 semantic skills.
- This being a Chinese project, on NEO, makes it more susceptible to regulations than other projects. It doesn’t seem likely, but is a risk nonetheless -1
- The token metrics are funny. Only 15% for sale. They have a whitelist for the presale (which may be filled up by the time readers see this.) They didn’t limit the amount people bought during the presale, and won’t for the public sale either. This could lead to whales owning most of the supply. -2
- They are having KYC implementation difficulties with their sale. It has been a huge issue in their telegram the last 24 hours. What looks like is happening, is there is no way to verify what customer is connected to what KYC. This could be an in for investors who currently aren’t signed up for the KYC to buy these tokens. These issues could be a bad sign of things to come.-2
- The Deepbrain whitepaper states; there have been over 5k startups since 2012, collecting over $22 billion. This is without counting the money large existing companies put into ai, which makes the total amount of money over $100 billion. It is certain that this is just the beginning.+4
- NEO partnership. NEO alone has an endless amount of growth potential. They have a large community that gets exdcited and involved with the projects NEO backs. This partnership is worth a lot. +3
- The ICO has a strict KYC rule. This is going to create a tremendous amount of demand for this once it hits exchanges.+2
- This is a $20 billion industry, that is only growing from here on out.+2
The 10 billion supply with only 1.5 billion being sold is scary. However, the rest of the ICO seems to make up for this. 5.8 out of 10
Sale starts Dec 15th, however, you need to fill out the whitelist/KYC app in order to get in. This application is having technical issues which may allow anyone to buy in without previously being KYC whitelisted. It’s worth a shot, but need to hurry!
Sign up here https://www.deepbrainchain.org/pc/kycEnglish.html
Cover image courtesy of Shutterstock.com.
- ICO Analysis: Majato December 17, 2017
- Trade Recommendation: Litecoin December 17, 2017
- Trade Recommendation: IOTA December 17, 2017
- ICO Analysis: Rentberry December 17, 2017
- Trade Recommendation: Ethereum December 16, 2017
- Long-Term Cryptocurrency Analysis: All Majors Stretched as Ripple Finally Breaks-Out December 16, 2017
- Trade Recommendation: OMNI/BTC Range Trade December 16, 2017
- Trade Recommendation: NEM December 16, 2017
- Risks abound with Ethereum and its Application Developers December 16, 2017
- Technical Analysis: Bitcoin Up Again as Altcoins Mixed in Volatile Trading December 15, 2017
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