The world of cryptocurrency is a very different place than the one it was just five years ago.
The meteoric rise in the popularity of Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies has resulted in a sudden influx of new players into the market, many of whom are looking to cash in quick on this seemingly get-rich-quick scheme.
As a result, there’s been an explosion in initial coin offerings (ICOs) for new cryptocurrencies and a proliferation of websites designed to help you find them.
But with so much money floating around, there’s bound to be some scammers looking to take advantage. And there are plenty of unscrupulous ICOs out there – or companies that haven’t yet delivered on the promises they made when their ICO launched.
What You’re Not Being Told About New Cryptocurrency: Get the inside scoop on ICO’s, cryptocurrency and blockchain.
This article will help you identify the cryptocurrency scams and companies you should stay away from.
The vast majority of new ICO’s are built on the Ethereum platform. In this guide, you will learn how to spot a potentially successful ICO, how to evaluate their team and product, and when to invest in an ICO.
The aim is to get you comfortable in investing in ICO’s by following my lead and by doing your own research and diligence. I’m not a financial adviser, nor am I qualified to give investment advice – this is simply a guide on how to do your own research and make informed decisions.
This guide assumes that you have some knowledge of cryptocurrency, blockchain, and the Ethereum network. If you don’t, check out Intro To Cryptocurrency: Bitcoin & Altcoin Basics [Udemy] or Blockchain Beginner Course [Udemy] for a quick introduction into cryptocurrency, blockchain and the Ethereum network.
The launch is the token sale, or initial coin offering (ICO). The ICO is basically a crowdfunding campaign. Investors are given the opportunity to purchase tokens that will be used on the network. These tokens are purchased with existing cryptocurrencies like Ethereum and Bitcoin. In return for their support, investors receive cryptocurrency tokens that can be used on the new platform when it launches.
The first ICO was held by Mastercoin in July 2013. Ethereum raised money with a token sale in 2014, raising 3,700 BTC in its first 12 hours, equal to approximately $2.3 million dollars at the time. Today, ICOs have become a popular way to fund new cryptocurrencies as they offer a simplified way of transferring funds between parties without requiring extensive legal paperwork or paying hefty fees to banks and lawyers.
As of October 2017, ICOs raised nearly $3 billion dollars for various projects. Currently, there are more than 800 different digital tokens available on various exchanges, with hundreds more planned for release in 2018. With so many options to choose from, it’s no wonder that investors are unsure where to start!
There is no doubt that 2017 was a huge year for cryptocurrency. The market cap grew from $17.7 billion to $613 billion, an increase of 3,300%.
According to the Bank for International Settlements (BIS), there are 20 million Bitcoin users worldwide. According to the Cambridge Centre for Alternative Finance, there are 2.9 to 5.8 million unique users actively using a cryptocurrency wallet.
This is a small fraction of its potential. Every currency has the potential to be used by millions of people, and cryptocurrency is no different.
However, the majority of people who hear about cryptocurrency have no idea how it works and what’s going on behind the scenes. This is not just true for cryptocurrency but also with every new technology ever invented in human history…
Every new technology started out as a mystery to most people and it took time for people to understand it and start using it.
The average person hears about ‘cryptocurrency’ and decides not to get involved because they either don’t understand it or they fear it’s too risky…
ICO is a new way of raising funds in the crypto space. The idea is to have a coin or token that can be sold during an ICO and traded on exchanges. This means that investors get quick returns if the token or coin increases in value. All this hype has led to a huge increase in the amount of money being poured into ICOs, which are now comparable to early stage venture capital deals. In fact, some of them are even bigger than VC deals.
It hasn’t all been smooth sailing, though. There was a time when many ICOs were launched as scams. Some companies would create a website, make up some information about their project and then raise a lot of money from investors without actually doing anything useful with it. Many people lost their money when these projects crashed and burned.
Fortunately, things have changed now due to the emergence of new regulations and more oversight by government authorities around the world. Nowadays it’s still possible to start an ICO but you must meet certain legal requirements and follow certain rules in order to do so legally without getting yourself into trouble with regulators later on down the road when they realize what you’ve done (or not done).
The Cryptocurrency market is a free market that is open 24/7. There are no limitations on when you can trade digital currency, how much you can trade at once or even how much you can make in a day. While it is true that the currency values fluctuate, there are many traders who take advantage of this fact. They buy low and sell high just as they would with any other asset. What’s more, they do not have to worry about banks freezing their accounts or having their assets seized by the government. Since everything is recorded on an open blockchain ledger, anyone can see what has been done and when it was done. It’s easy to gain trust when everyone knows what they are doing with their money.
As regulators, policymakers and media continue to clamp down on the cryptocurrency industry, more than $27 billion has been raised in 2018 through token sales. In the first quarter of the year alone, $6.3 billion was successfully raised through ICOs.
The ICO industry has been a remarkable success story, with hundreds of projects raising millions of dollars a pop. But as the space matures and regulations kick in, it’s likely that many of these companies will have to take their business elsewhere.
The good news is that entrepreneurs and investors are starting to realize that there are alternative ways of fundraising for blockchain projects. One such option is security token offerings (STO), which combines elements of ICOs and IPOs to provide a more compliant way of raising funds for blockchain-based businesses.