ICO Analysis: Soar
Almost every mobile device with the Android OS has Google Maps pre-installed. Rated 4.3/5 by more than nine million users alone on Google Play, it is truly one of the most popular maps and navigations applications out there. It truly does a great job when it comes to navigation and so on, but it is truly hard to say that the average image quality of its satellite feature is exceptional. As many people and companies need higher-quality images, the commercial usage of drones is soaring lately.
High-quality drone content is used in many industries including but not restricted to mining, agriculture, news, real estate, security, military and scientific research. Thus, we can say that the market is in high demand, but this is not to say that the market participants do not face problems. In fact, it is extremely hard for professional drone operators to sell drone content since there is no marketplace at the moment. In such an absence they have no choice other than selling their products to local or regional customers on their demand, making it extremely hard to earn money.
But no more. Soar is a platform aiming to connect drone operators with customers for high-quality drone images, videos etc. It enables commercial drone operators to monetize their hard work by creating a market-place for drone content. The blockchain will be used to store metadata on-chain, but actual media content, media with large file sizes, will be stored in Alibaba Cloud. Thanks to Soar’s not appealing to a decentralized storage solution and going with a centralized one, storing large files will not be an issue for Soar.
This is not all. Soar’s ultimate goal is to create a dynamic super-map of the world with great detail at the end. It should be also noted that more than 450 commercial drone operators, each having 70 GB of drone content on average, are already working for Soar, due to their pre-existing relationships. This means that the lack of supply for drone content should not be a source of worry for investors on short-term.
The SKYM token is used for several features as follows.
- Gaining access to drone content
- To create SkyBounties
- To become SkySponsors
SkyBounties are used to incentivize drone operators to take pictures, videos etc. of certain geographical grids by rewarding them SKYM tokens. Thus any commercial drone operator, properly licensed, will be able to collect SKYM tokens in return for their effort. Being a SkySponsor is another way to obtain tokens as well, acting as intermediaries, agencies or sponsors as the name suggests. SkySponsors are asked to stake some tokens to prevent malicious and illegal behaviors.
The initial total supply of SKYM is 350 million tokens with the following token distribution:
- 3% public sale
- 3% team
- 4% ecosystem
- 4% community building
- 0% advisors
- 7% partnerships
- 9% private sale
Team, advisor and partner tokens are locked up for one year. Although public sale participants will be able to buy tokens, each for 20 cents, it is important to note that private sale investors were able to for 15 cents, implying a bonus approximately of 33%. Only one-eighth of tokens allocated for private sale is allocated for public sale which might cause a dump when the token is listed on exchanges.
The team is planning to use the token sale proceeds as in the following manner:
- 30% marketing and sponsorship
- 35% operations
- 20% research and development
- 10% infrastructure
- 5% legals/IP
CEO Amir Farhand: Farhand is the CEO and founder at Takor Group, a geospatial company focusing on location-based technologies.
Jim Rhetta: Rhetta was a satellite and systems engineers at Lockheed Martin for 25 years.
Guy Perkins: Perkins is a non-executive director at Spookfish, a company focusing on aerial imagery. He also worked as COO at NearMap, a location-based technology company.
Alibaba Cloud: Drone images, videos, aerial mapping etc. will be stored in Alibaba Cloud. The extent of this partnership is not clear.
Below is a breakdown of the risks and growth potential of Soar.
- It is not obvious that the project needs any implementation of blockchain technology. (-1.5)
- Big companies can hire teams of professional drone operators instead of using the Soar platform. (-1.5)
- Considering the possibility of low demand for the platform, a hard cap of $20,250,000 seems too high. (-1)
- The commercial use of drones is in high demand and expected to increase even more. (+3)
- Soar has the first-mover advantage as there is no blockchain project that creates a marketplace for drone content. (+2)
- So many commercial drone operators’ existences on Soar implies that the supply for drone content will not be an issue for the short-term. (+1.5)
- The demand for professional drone content is surely soaring, but the lack of a marketplace is quite annoying for drone operators who look to earn some cash. Soar creates a decentralized marketplace to connect professional drone operators with so many industries and even some small adoption might yield a snowball effect. Still, it is not obvious that why the use of blockchain is a necessity for the project and token metrics are not the best.
- Soar receives a 2.5/10.
- Type: ERC20 – Utility
- Symbol: SKYM
- Platform: Ethereum
- Crowdsale: Unspecified
- Minimum Investment: Unspecified
- Price: $0.20
- Hard Cap: $20,250,000
- Payments Accepted: ETH
- Restricted from Participating: Unspecified
Featured image courtesy of Shutterstock.