Investing Through The Eyes Of A Crypto Trader

The last few years could rightfully be described as a rollercoaster when it comes to cryptocurrencies. Bitcoin became a household name overnight, and just as quickly, its bubble burst. Initial coin offerings (ICOs) enjoyed a boom but now their success is dwindling. Meanwhile, security token offerings (STOs) and other breakthroughs are vying to fill the void.

 

To navigate and understand where the cryptocurrency market is headed, I spoke to Anatoly Radchenko, the CEO of United Traders, which is an advanced investment and financial services company. At the age of 28, Radchenko was named the Best Private Investor twice and started a hedge fund. He has significant experience with financial markets in general, and a unique first-person perspective on trading cryptocurrencies.

Over the past year and a half, the crypto industry has become quite well-known. What happened?

“The period from 2016 to 2017 was the most interesting in the crypto market. ICOs appeared on the scene, and everyone had very high expectations. These prospects are still there today, but are much more grounded. In the beginning, expectations were too high, and were in a very short timeframe. That is why everyone quickly became disillusioned and the bubble burst—and why 2017 was very difficult for all traders. Even with top funds like Novograts and Pantera Capital, investors lost about the same amount as if they personally held bitcoin”.

Radchenko explains that in traditional markets, not all assets are correlated with the market—but with the crypto market, all assets fell alongside it. It was difficult to find a safe haven. So 2017 taught traders, especially new ones, that the markets are quite volatile. Many traders used leverage, which led to large losses and eventually to the elimination of all positions. They came with high expectations for a quick profit—and it did not quite pan out – he added.

Can we expect a rebound in the market?

“I think that the drop is a good thing, because a drop in value will ultimately lead to a decrease in volatility. When a large number of people have at least one bitcoin each, they press the button and the losses snowball. Now, though, most bitcoins will once again belong to large holders. This will reduce the circulation of bitcoins in the market, which in general should stabilize the markets a little bit. Such a strong drop also made investments possible for many serious players who were suddenly able to afford it”.

Radchenko is circumspect on what will happen next since, of course, everyone has different predictions about what will happen with cryptocurrencies—to the point that many experts are sick of being asked what they think at all. Wall Street’s main advisor has said he is tired of forecasting crypto, and recently wrote on Bloomberg that he is refusing to comment on the topic.

“We even decided to make a little joke out of it with a fun, quick quiz where anyone can predict what comes next”, Radchenko adds.

Do you think cryptocurrency prices were manipulated—and if so, by who and how?

“In principle, when the price was at $6,000, everyone understood that, okay, someone buys, someone sells. But with sharp movement from $6,000 to $3,000, many people got knocked off track. And it happened without any significant events. I do think Tether and Bitfinex, which are being probed by the Department of Justice, are at play here. I also think this may be some kind of manipulation by the same bitmix”.

Radchenko explains that a bitmix is an exchange which accepts only bitcoins. It is very easy to register. Most people—let’s call them gamblers—switched to this platform and there was high turnover. If you look at the volume on the bitmix, the total could reach 5 or 6 billion a day relative to the volume on the Binance and Bitfinex exchanges. So it turns out that we find ourselves in a situation widely talked about in classical markets: the volume of derivatives, which in one way or another indirectly affect the underlying asset, or spot price of the asset itself, is much higher. This holds true for gold and oil too. And with crypto, we do not have regulation or a central supplier, so prices differ everywhere. There is a lot of systemic and financial risk.

What are some rules for investing in crypto?

A great rule is to try to invest in large projects, because money tends to go toward money—that is, projects with good marketing. Another good rule is that there is no need to try to guess the bottom. It is better to allocate your assets evenly and in equal parts into different projects, because, once again, the price now does not reflect anything. As we recently saw, iOS just grew 30% in a day. Why did this happen? Nobody knows. And you will never guess whether it will start growing today or tomorrow. It is necessary to be patient and not try to look for the bottom.

With regard to the challenges traders faced in 2017, it’s hard to be happy when people lose money because of their inexperience. But the most important thing a trader must understand is that, even if he has been mistaken when it comes to his predictions and transactions, all is not lost. The market will be there tomorrow and the day after tomorrow and in a year. A trader must always have a margin of safety (or cash) in order to somehow correct a situation that has gone wrong. Do not go all-in and expect instant results. Gamblers get mowed down.

How do scam projects affect the industry and the value of currencies? Do a large number of them affect the cost of other cryptocurrencies?

Scam projects have always existed and will always exist. Most people try to focus on good projects, but there have always been both bad and good projects and novice investors might not be able to tell the difference. But I do not think most projects that failed were necessarily the result of organized criminal groups, for example. They did not intend for the funds to disappear. A lot of guys who raised money for ICOs had no background building businesses, and knew nothing about corporate culture or hiring staff, much less how to conduct B2B and B2C relations. They just had an idea, investors invested a lot of money in the idea, and the idea did not go anywhere. Plus, the crypto market fell. It was kind of a game, and they lost. I do not think most people wanted to throw their investors under the bus.

What trends await us in 2019? Maybe some that will be transferred from 2018 and so on?

The first is the development of various protocols, services, and chains for bitcoins, like Lightning. These are faster, reliable, simplified ways of banking and the user experience will only continue to improve in 2019. The second is the emergence, I hope, of the framework for security tokens. When companies collect money, they can only issue tokens a year later, so this year we will see how Telegram tokens, for example, will behave. Also, as services like Facebook have their own internal currencies (like it’s said to be creating for WhatsApp transfers) it will drive adoption so that people start to understand how, say, the Facebook cryptocurrency differs from Bitcoin, what decentralization is in general, and why it is needed. Finally, we will also see the use of blockchain technology by corporations.

Can you talk about how the ICO boom happened and whether it will happen again?

It can easily happen again, but it will just be called something else and have another mechanism. The rules will change a little bit, the names will change, the marketing will change, and the boom will repeat. I think security tokens will be the next boom.

And what is the importance of security tokens now for the industry?

The fact that your rights are described, and, roughly speaking, the company has some responsibility. These security tokens can have dividend distribution properties, they can have voting properties — that is, they can have properties like a security, but they can be stored and transmitted to each other like tokens.

With security tokens it is always clear how many there are, where they lie, who they lie with, how to find a buyer, seller, etc. It will help to make the market liquid and transparent. That is, it can lower the barriers for medium investors to invest during the earlier stage of a company. As a rule, all the best companies look at how they can attract Google Ventures, Andreessen Horowitz, Sequoia, and so on. But security tokens can also drive the democratization of investments in good companies.

How will current utility tokens, including security tokens, be regulated in the future?

This is actually, probably, one of the most difficult issues, and, in my opinion, no one knows, and everyone is waiting for that answer. I think the Security and Exchange Commission should listen to other regulators from other countries and figure it out. They cannot simply talk about how thing should be.


Source
Author: Gerald Fenech
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The Biggest Problem for ICOs? In 2018, It Was Their Own Investors

Simon Seojoon Kim is CEO and partner at Hashed, a crypto-focused accelerator focused on community building and impact investing.

The following is an exclusive contribution to CoinDesk’s 2018 Year in Review.

At the beginning of 2018, the blockchain community reached the pinnacle of the ICO bubble.

The slogan of ICOs, which promised that “anyone can invest in an initial project,” sounded wonderful and future-oriented. However, as the prices of most ICO tokens continued to tumble over the past year, it appears that the first chapter of this grand experiment has ended in failure.

Why do most ICOs fail to succeed? Some would cite the greed of individuals blindly looking to make a quick fortune, incompetent project teams led by entrepreneurs that lack expertise, the technical limitations of platform blockchains that lack scalability and inadequate regulations in countries that have been unable to keep up with changing market conditions.

These are all true. However, there is little to learn from this, as these are difficulties that all innovative, paradigm-shifting technologies face when forging new markets in their early stages.

In this article, I aim to take stock of the current situation by examining the inherent limitations of ICOs, in particular the belief that “anyone can invest in an initial project,” and discuss some potential solutions.

The popularity of group purchasing channels

Despite the burst of the ICO bubble, the blockchain craze in Asian markets is not waning.

In fact, interest in new technological trends and expanding ecosystems is growing. In particular, in markets like China and Korea where cryptocurrencies have gained greater acceptance, retail investors continue to take part in initial investments for blockchain projects through a variety of methods.

In China, the secondary market has become popular because Chinese nationals are restricted from participating in ICOs by law, while in Korea, a number of ‘coin group purchase’ channels are being operated surreptitiously through KakaoTalk messenger or other communities.

Setting aside government regulation, there are other important reasons behind these trends.

Up until as recently as mid-2017, anyone with an interest in blockchain projects could participate in an ICO without much difficulty. However, from the second half of 2017, there has been a movement towards larger private rounds instead of public sales and lower participation from individual investors.

In particular, projects that were more confident in their fundraising ability increasingly sought a greater proportion of investment from institutional investors or dedicated crypto VCs instead of through public sales. Key examples of this are Ontology or Handshake, who simply engaged in community airdrops after a private sale, without conducting an ICO.

Individual investors interested in these projects attempt to get involved through influential brokers that can grant them access to the private round. At the same time, there are many complaints within the community about the expanding trend of institutional investors taking up the lion’s share of private rounds.

A reluctance to accept individual investors

There is a large gap between the role that many projects had hoped individual investors would play during the ICO, and the reality that they have been faced with afterwards.

While providing the public with a fair investment opportunity, project teams also hoped to create a loyal community that would be aligned with the project’s incentives and share in its growth.

Compared to the existing startup model, where the company grows based on investment received from a small number of institutional investors through closed channels, teams believed that ICOs would facilitate the creation of a more open ecosystem which would lead to a virtuous cycle of rapid growth.

However, individual investors in blockchain projects ultimately failed to provide much help to the projects in many cases.

The majority of ICO participants who formed the community’s persona were often “creditors” who only cared about the token price, rather than “contributors.” Many of these individuals simply jumped on the bandwagon of popular projects without a clear understanding of or trust in the project’s core technology or business.

Accordingly, they contributed very little to the productive activities that promote healthy growth within communities. In addition to this, few of the individual investors who took part in ICOs for blockchain projects actually used the tokens they received for the intended purpose once the dapp or platform was released. Instead, they were essentially free riders who sold off their tokens as soon as the price hit a certain level.

This led to a growing awareness among teams that they could actually threaten the long-term development of projects. From the perspective of project teams, it seems more efficient to manage a small number of professional investors rather than have to communicate and provide explanations to a community of individual investors who constantly ask about the price and listing on exchanges, especially during the launch stage when the team is naturally spending most of its energy on development.

Institutional investors also tend to have their own networks and greater insight into the blockchain industry. In many cases, institutional investors have provided practical assistance to help grow the project by playing an advisory role to entrepreneurs or recruiting team members during the early stages. These investors can provide support in a number of ways, including building local communities in key locations, hosting hackathons to connect developers to the project, or acting as a liaison with major media channels.

Because there is a longer lock-up period in private rounds than in public rounds, institutional investors have no choice but to believe in the mid-to-long-term growth of the project and offer assistance where they can. Of course, not all institutional investors effectively contribute to the development of a project. The behavior of some institutional investors who fail to provide promised support or lack expertise and judgment has also been a source of complaints within communities.

However, the competitive nature of markets is helping to correct this problem.

Because of the free and transparent flow of information in the hyper connected crypto ecosystem, information about reputable and not so reputable institutional investors spreads quickly between blockchain entrepreneurs. In time, only reputable crypto funds will be given the opportunity to invest in promising projects, similar to the growth process that venture capital markets went through.

Is investment the only way to contribute to a project?

Thus far I have looked at the growing trend of smaller public rounds in 2018.

I am not trying to raise the dichotomous question of whether individual or institutional investors are more suitable for investment in initial projects. The more fundamental question is, “How do we create an ecosystem in which those who contribute to projects can become initial shareholders?” and I believe the mechanism to enable this is Proof of Contribution.

Think back to the advent of the world’s first cryptocurrency, bitcoin, which represented the beginning of the decentralization paradigm, and the process through which tokens were issued. Bitcoin issued tokens to the community purely through mining, without any token sale targeting investors. When miners provided hash power, their contribution would be verified in a way that enhanced the security of the network, and they were rewarded with bitcoins in return.

Although the protocol-defined method of contribution to the network was simple, it was fundamentally a proof-of-work (PoW) concept, which could also be viewed as a form of ‘Proof of Contribution’ that reflected the philosophy of compensating those who contribute to a project. During the long period where no one paid attention to the price of Bitcoin, the majority of early shareholders in the network were people who carried a strong belief in decentralized currencies rather than those looking to make a short-term profit.

In the IT industry, there is a clear distinction between the role of 1) investors, 2) the company and 3) employees during the early stages of a startup. Investors receive equity in the company in return for providing initial capital. It is then the company’s job to use these funds effectively to grow the company. Employees receive stock options upon joining the company, and are incentivized to work hard because of the clear upside potential of a higher share price.

I believe that this stock options system was the biggest driving force behind innovation in the Silicon Valley startups of today.

Accordingly, it is unfortunate that most blockchain projects have reduced the role of external stakeholders who join the project in its initial stages to that of ‘investors’ in traditional IT startups. This is demonstrated by the fact that the token allocation section in the white papers of most blockchain projects resembles a business development plan and marketing budget that was determined entirely by the project team, instead of a system of autonomous token distribution through the protocol. In most cases, the token model is only described briefly, with a focus on the main activities that will take place once the network is sufficiently established.

In other words, the model for network growth is selling tokens to investors through marketing, sales or partnership activities, with the use of such funds arbitrarily determined by the project team. This suggests that blockchain projects to date have not taken full advantage of the benefits of decentralization. Instead of treating individuals who make early contributions as merely financial investors, projects that are truly pursuing decentralization should recognize them as more akin to employees who receive stock options (and can actively contribute to the network from outside the organization) and adopt a philosophy of ‘compensation through the protocol’ to leverage them.

Blockchain projects have the potential to design detailed and effective reward systems catered to the nature of their token model that can verify the contributions of members and compensate them accordingly. For example, even if initial investors are given bonuses as a reward for financial contributions, the calculation and payment of the bonus could take place at a later date once it has been proved that the individual has reached a certain level of use on the project’s sapp or made a contribution to PR activities though a method defined by the protocol.

This would incentivize investors to participate in a more substantive way. In addition to this, a variety of protocols could be designed that encourage non-investors to contribute through participation in permissionless networks, and distribute tokens for such involvement.

In the future, we will see blockchain projects with more complex value chains that have greater crossover with the real world. The ultimate goal of decentralized projects should be decentralizing the project’s entire value chain. To achieve this, all of the key sections of the value chain of ordinary companies, from R&D to marketing and sales, should be turned into protocols that are as detailed as possible, and companies should also consider mechanisms to incentivize top experts from outside the organization to contribute to the project’s growth in efficient ways by offering rewards.

Tokens can be used as effective tools in this scenario, but it is critical that the method for calculating incentives for contributions is based on a transparent and defined protocol that is made public, unlike in centralized startups where it is based on the fleeting, arbitrary decisions of the management team.

This can give protocol-based organizations the competitive edge over centralized companies.

Distributing tokens only to real contributors

Investment is merely one of many ways to contribute to the growth of a project.

I believe that the underlying reason behind the failure of so many ICOs these days is that the communities are filled with initial shareholders who only care about the token price because they joined as investors.

The identity of any organization is determined by the nature of its initial shareholders. This leads to a chain reaction which influences those who join the community later on, and also has a critical influence on the direction and speed of the network’s growth. In order to succeed, blockchain projects from 2019 onwards will have to demonstrate more advanced methods than their predecessors when it comes to determining the composition of their initial shareholder pools.

They should look to move away from the current methods of giving tokens to anyone who invests, random airdrops and relying on partnerships based on the decisions of centralized entities when forming initial shareholder communities.

Despite the failure of so many ICOs, many still believe in the strong underlying value of blockchain technology which has the potential to completely change the foundations of our economic systems.

Moving forward, I hope that more blockchain projects will take up the challenge of using token distribution models where ‘not just anyone can become an initial shareholder,’ and consider a “proof of contribution” model which distributes tokens only to those who have made a substantive contribution.


Source
Author: Simon Seojoon Kim
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The countdown: The top three most remarkable ICOs in 2018

When it comes to initial coin offerings (ICOs), we tend to hear many of the negatives – about how risky they can be, how projects can target easy prey using them as scams, and how they are often wildly unregulated – but they’re not all bad.

Sometimes a fantastic project just needs a little help in the money department and a coin offering is a great way to get that extra support. And sometimes that extra support comes in the form of many, many dollars worth. Here we take a look at three of the biggest token sales this year.

The DAO

The ICO sale for the DAO (Decentralized Autonomous Organisation) project brought in $152 million USD worth of ether in May 2016 and then carried with it a whole lot of scandal.

The project, set to a craft a decentralized blockchain version of a venture capital fund, hoped to offer a way in which new projects could be built on Ethereum’s blockchain.

It turns out that with great money comes great controversy, and one month after the crowd sale began, things started to unravel. It was found that there was a major compromise in the security of the DAO’s system which let in a hacker who made off with close on one-third of the sponsored funds.

After ‘the DAO hack’, as the scandal became known, the thread started to pull and things fell apart quickly from there and the project dissolved. The incident also raised an alert to the US securities and exchange commission (SEC) which declared that the sale of the DAO coins would be considered as having been issued that of a security. That means the tokens should have been subject to regulation and the endeavor sparked new ICO regulations for US based projects to consider.

It’s easy to note the negative aspects of the DAO project, but one cannot forget the success before the hack and the massive amount of money which was raised before the theft.

bancor protocol

Bancor

Hey, want a protocol which can allow you to release new ‘smart token’ cryptocurrencies easily convertible against reserve tokens? Sounds good, right? Thus enters Bancor.

The project allows that and more – the procedure is designed to lessen issues in trading such as liquidity and price discovery for newly listed tokens. Since the demand for cryptocurrencies increases so does the necessity for a user-friendly trading platform.

Held in June of last year, the ICO for a blockchain project by the company managed to pull in an impressive $153 million USD in Ether.

The prediction market project run by the exchange network allows users on the platform which hold Ethereum coins to “cut out the middleman” when exchanging them for another token listed on the network, reducing unnecessary fees.

The project’s token immediately had an initial success with a spike on its first day – hitting its highest of $4.49 USD before dipping to a low of $1.49 USD trading price.

eos

EOS

Like Bancor, EOS’s ICO was also launched in June of last year but the project has nothing else in common.

The founders developed the project with a legally composed system in mind in order to create a system which can act as a common authority for blockchain disagreements. The platform, often compared to the sought-after Ethereum network, also hopes to tackle the scalability issues seen in its “bigger”, older counterpart and alleviate the congestion we’ve all grown to know and despise.

The project has done impressively well and has attracted a significant amount of attention – and funds – from investors especially based in China, the company’s home nation.

Telegram

Bonus – Telegram

The Mac Daddy of all coin offerings entered the ring in a fashion a little different to the others.

This ICO receives a different light owing to the fact that the public token sale has not – and might not – taken place.

The company initially set an ambitious goal of $1.2 billion USD for its planned project – which will come in the form of a new blockchain dubbed the Telegram Open Network (TON) – and the company’s private token sale has just blown that figure out of the water. Currently, the coin offering (not open to public investors) has collected a staggering $1.7 billion USD in funds for the project. It gained $850 million USD in the first phase of the sale in February of last year and then managed to double that last month.

It would be unfair to hold it in the category of the top public initial coin offerings since it isn’t open to the public, but it’s a coin offering too jaw-droppingly impressive not to mention.


Source
Author: REBECCA LEIGHTON
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GSC: At the Forefront of a Revolution

With the continuing emergence of blockchain technology disrupting the more conventional forms of practices today, we take a closer look at the vision outlined by Genesis Supply Chain on exactly how they plan to solve some of the most common issues, in one of the biggest industries suffering from a lack of autonomous management. We are, of course, referring to the supply chain industry. Although to most this is an industry flying relatively low under the radar in terms of attention, it certainly is one that could potentially be revolutionised by the utilization of this new and wonderful technology.

The supply chain industry makes up two thirds of global GDP, making it patently obvious that with a positive restructuring of the way this industry operates, we could see some drastically improved statistics. Whether by means of human error or a lack of general technical procedures, the supply chain industry is currently fraught with problems.

Serious investors in blockchain solutions will take note of how well the technology could potentially revitalise any particular industry, and there’s no doubt that the supply chain is one particular sector in need of a serious re-boot. GSC Platform aim to be at the forefront of that particular revolution!

THE STAKES OF SUPPLY CHAIN
WITHIN THE INDUSTRY

Wide and complex supplier’s clusters constantly appear and produce connected objects
(IoT) which are getting more and more innovative, having an impact on traditional
approaches for the supply chain industry. A company might have to deal with thousands of
suppliers and partners through various industries to fulfil its client’s needs.

In Deloitte’s article* regarding risks impacting the supply chain, companies highlight their
difficulty to manage sudden demand changes as well as the mark-up erosion, mainly due to
globalization and worldwide connectivity. Indeed, companies have no other choice
than trusting their stakeholders – internal and external to control the various flows of
their business activity. Even by using outsourcing as a lever, numerous companies fail
when they attempt finding a reliable visibility on their whole supply chain and remain
dependent on their stakeholders.

In any efficient supply chain system, partners share data, financial information or even
intellectual property. Beyond contracts, audits and insurance, trust in integrity and
performance of everyone is a priceless asset. However, in wide and fluid systems,
constructors lack visibility regarding data and activities of each stakeholder, implying trust
must be built another way. In these situations, where a high volume of transaction between
actors which most often do not know each other, quickness, trust and efficiency become
vital. An automated and outsourced blockchain solution based on sharing and data management appears as logical. Please see below some cases of blockchain utilization among various industries:

-Moog is developing a blockchain platform to share in complete safety details of computer assisted design aircraft parts with its suppliers.

-Maersk and IBM are working on cross-border and crossed transactions using blockchain technology to improve process efficiency.

Blockchain Matters

Blockchain is a wide outsourced network of computers, recording every transaction
made by a member of the chain in a shared register (blockchain) which is
continuously and collectively updated live. In addition, a consensual algorithm
working in each of the computers ensure the validity of each transaction and prevents
fraud, malware attacks as well as data forging.

In any industry, whichever sector, holding data regarding the product quality and being
able to locate the supplier of a faulty component is essential for the main actors
of the sector. Moreover, reliable and verifiable characteristics of blockchain technology
shape a quick and efficient answer to fraud detection processes. Blockchain technology will
improve safety, speed, and make those ecosystems more reactive.

Today, supply chain industry represents two third of the global GDP (around 54 thousand
billion dollars worldwide). However, the increasing segmentation of economics, safety
and fluidity brought by blockchain technology to financial operation, will drastically reduce
risks linked to loans.

Thus, those loans will make the SME activity soar, being billion dollars opportunities for the
global supply chain market.

Purchasing services play an essential part in companies’ organization. With a
portfolio representing 40-80 % of the global revenue, the buyer is at the centre as he
is the link between all services (internal clients such as production, commercial, financial),
with clients but also and mainly with suppliers.

Please see below a simplified process of production among the industry:

Purchasing department is at the center of each company, in any industrial sector.
Its efficiency is essential for the good development of the company.

The relationship Buyer – Supplier:

  • Suppliers bring you a wider business network.
  • A good partner (buyer or supplier) becomes an efficient shield to face competition.
  • He strongly develops the company’s growth.
  • He increases the ROI.

It is clear that choosing a partner shall not only be made regarding its price offer. In this
case, you might make some quick savings but on the longer term, if your supplier is not
efficient, your ROI will be minimal.

Numerous factors will sway the choice of your supplier. Its prices obviously, but we should
also assess the quality-price ratio, quality of service, its reliability, speed in terms of
execution and other criterion which are all to be borne in mind to make the good
choice.

In the current supply chain, purchaser must go through tedious, manual and time
consuming tasks. Moreover, companies work on centralized database, prone to industrial
espionage and not connected with clients and supplier’s systems. In addition, spare
parts market is threatened by counterfeiting and documents forging, which are at the
origin of dead weight loss as well as risky in terms of human lives (plane accident, train
derailing).

In this context, GSC Platform, thanks to the Blockchain technology, brings:

  • An outsourced ecosystem.
  • A higher data safety.
  • A process automation.
  • A digital link between every actor’s databases.
  • A mark-up save for companies and a higher safety for consumers among sensitive
    industries.

 

Founders Vision

Provided with more than 7 years of experience as a purchaser in the aviation area, Maxime Legros has noticed that tools and communication channels available do not fit, leading to a
deadweight loss for their company. After discovering Blockchain technology in 2016, studying technologies such as Bitcoin and Ethereum, Maxime sees, via Blockchain, the ideal solution to improve purchasing processes.

I have thought GSC Platform, ever since its creation, as a way to create a virtuous circle in the relationship between suppliers and buyers, by improving trust, avoiding time consuming tasks for the purchaser. For me, the buyer is the engine of every company, and by using GSC Platform, he spares time in favour of added value missions, such as negotiating or searching for new suppliers.

“GSC ERP 3.0 will adapt to any company, regardless of its activity area or its size and substantially improve purchaser’s efficiency. The company will increase its mark-up without a need for weighty contribution nor modifying its intern processes.

My wish is to make GSC Platform the ultimate solution for every stakeholder of the industry, and to be pioneers in terms of purchase process improvement among cutting edge technologies such as Hyperloop, drones or IA.

The industry we are building together today will be our kid’s tomorrow!”

*https://www2.deloitte.com/ch/fr/pages/operations/articles/the-ripple-effect.html


Learn more at https://gscplatform.io/

South Korean Startup Presto to File Constitutional Appeal Against Local ICO Ban

A South Korean blockchain startup, Presto, will reportedly file a constitutional appeal over the county’s ban on Initial Coin Offerings (ICOs), South Korean economic media outlet Sedaily reportsDec. 6.

Presto claims on its website that it provides a “total solution to development teams from website building to token issuing.” The startup was reportedly trying to run a Decentralized Autonomous Organization-based Initial Coin Offering (DAICO) in South Korea for the first time.

As Cointelegraph explained in a dedicated guide, DAICOs aim to improve the ICO fundraising method by integrating some features of Decentralized Autonomous Organizations (DAOs).

This fundraising method enables users to use smart contracts to vote for a refund of the funds if they stop trusting the developers or lose faith in the project, Sedaily notes.

As Cointelegraph reported, South Korea banned all ICOs in September last year. Sedaily reports that Presto’s CEO and founder, Kang Kyung-Won declared that the startup has “been hitting a snag as the government and the National Assembly have done nothing over the last one year since the government’s blanket ban on ICOs.”

He then announced their intention to file a constitutional appeal:

“We will ask the court to rule on the ICO ban and the legislature’s nonfeasance.”

Sedaily explains that according to Presto, the ban infringes on “people’s freedom of occupation and property and equal rights and scientist’s basic rights.” Kyung-Won said that given the fast pace of technological development that came with the fourth industrial revolution, “such unconstitutional and pre-modern measures as the ICO ban should not exist any longer.”

South Korea’s stance to crypto regulation stands in clear contrast with other countries like Malta. As Cointelegraph reported in July, Malta has been acclaimed as “the blockchain island” after the local parliament approved three bills that gave the crypto industry unprecedented legal clarity.

The Maltese government is also reportedly working on an artificial intelligence (AI) strategy of which the ultimate objective is to “explore a citizenship test for robots in the process of drafting new regulation for AI.”

That being said, South Korea recently overtook the Maltese crypto exchanges daily trading volume in November according to a CryptoCompare report. In the document, analysts suggest that the reason behind this shift are “competitions, trans-fee mining and rebate programs.”



Source
Author: Adrian Zmudzinski
Image Credit

GSC Platform is the Future of the Supply Chain.. on the Blockchain!

The Supply Chain Industry is a 54 Trillion U$D Industry!

WHAT IS THE PROBLEM?

The main source of expenses for companies is related to purchases and it is up to 80% of the total expenses. The current supply chain process is full of tedious and time consuming tasks for the purchasing department.

The lack of transparency (parts certification-counterfeited parts), speed, security and automation lead to huge losses for companies and significant delays in their sales, while jeopardising their customers safety.

HOW WE SOLVE IT?

We provide to businesses a blockchain backed purchasing management software to bring them an easy way to handle their supply chain process. Businesses will be autonomous to improve their sale margins and secure their own data.

The purchasing processes are crucial. When the purchasers are efficient in their work, the
company saves time, money and improves its sales margins.

HYBRID BLOCKCHAIN

GSC Platform implements GSC ERP 3.0 blockchain technology to allow any company in the world to use a purchase management software, based on blockchain, to handle its purchase as well as commercial relations. This ready-to-use technology is easy to set up, allows savings in terms of time and money through the purchasing process, securing and improving relationships between stakeholders. The features will be created on the public blockchain via smart contract (ETC) and IPFS and the data will be secured and stored on a permissioned/private blockchain (Hyperledger). The blockchain technology used by GSC Platform for its GSC ERP 3.0 product offers an efficient way to fight against authentication problems, counterfeiting as well as industrial espionage.

GSC has 4 key features which together form the GSC ERP 3.0


ECOSYSTEM

IT PLATFORM

SMART PURCHASES

PARTS TRACEABILITY

IT PLATFORM

A powerful IT platform to provide a real time business analysis and being a constant support for our users through their supply chain process.

The platform is IT tools dedicated to SMEs. Indeed, GSC’s team provides IT tools in order all analyses are stored and available in the user’s dashboard in real time. The Purchaser has a complete vision of their Purchasing areas, current purchase orders and the archiving. In a few clicks they are able to get all the information needed and can search through the daily tasks of the buyer.

               IT Tools

The purchaser has the real time vision of his suppliers portfolio with a tracking of   their performance.

Decentralized Blockchain Database

Supply chain professionals are protected against industrial espionage.

Interoperability

All users make business together and this increases the global trust significantly.

Immutable Records

Users secure and store indefinitely their business’s data at no cost.

 

SMART PURCHASES

Smart contracts technology is in the heart of the GSC Platform’s ecosystem to provide automation, speed and trust in businesses between purchasers, suppliers and freight forwarders.

Based on the Smart Contract blockchain Technology, GSC Smart Purchases manages the purchase orders of GSC Platform’s users and secures the transaction and the purchase orders information into the blockchain.

Disintermediation

No need of a third party as a bank or insurance policy

Instant Payment

For cash in advance as the payment method for a purchase order. The fees for payment are only cents worth of $.

Automation

The smart contracts are automatically and self-executed into the blockchain.

PARTS TRACEABILITY

A blockchain technology to track every part or component in any industry which brings trust between supply chain’s parties.

The traceability is a main concern for supply chain professionals and companies as the lack of transparency in the parts’ traceability leads to huge losses for companies. Furthermore and above all,this could lead to accidents even to human deaths in some industries such as the Transportation or the Pharmaceutical Industries.

Safety

The tamper-proof data/part certificates implemented into the blockchain guarantee that the part aren’t counterfeited. It brings safety for the consumers.

Users self regulation of the ecosystem

Suppliers are accredited by GSC Platform users’ whom validate the authenticity of the data/certificate. It increases suppliers’ reputation in the market.

 

We are ready to disrupt the Supply Chain Industry! Take a look at our new and improved website here!

Useful Links:

Official Website- https://gscplatform.io/home.html
Facebook-           https://www.facebook.com/GSCPlatform
Twitter-              https://twitter.com/GSCPlatform
Telegram-           https://t.me/GSCPlatformOfficial
Linkedin-            https://www.linkedin.com/company/gscplatform
Youtube-            https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC1Sh6OUnImZOajl6_Imzl9w
Medium-             https://medium.com/@gscplatform
Reddit-               https://www.reddit.com/r/GSCPlatform
Instagram-        https://www.instagram.com/gscplatform/

Crypto VC Funding Up Even As ICOs Drop, Market Thrashing Continues

  • ICO investment down 74% for 2018 Q3 versus Q1
  • However, VC funding in crypto is strong and growing, up 3x versus last year

Funding in the crytopasset industry is undergoing a broad shift amid the ongoing decline in market values. Institutional and venture capital (VC) money is taking up the slack as retail investors leave the space, according to a new review by Outlier Ventures, an early-funding technology VC firm based in the UK.

Outlier reports that VC investment in the crypto industry is up 316% so far in 2018 over last year, with the majority of funding coming from the US. However, the increase in VC funding is backgrounded by a major drop in overall initial coin offering (ICO) investments of 74% between Q1 and Q3, or to about $1 billion from $3.8 billion earlier this year.

The report also reveals a shift in the type and quality of project funding being pitched today, claiming a “drastic reduction in the frequency and size of token sales,” which were in the past mostly bought up by retail investors. In lieu of the ICO model, private equity investment is increasing at all funding stages, with late stage funding becoming more common this year versus last year (mergers and acquisitions fall in this category, which have also risen this year).

Increasing Professionalization

Projects are bringing more to the table now, with a “considerable improvement in both the amount of traction and complexity of token design by startups before they approach […] markets.” Outlier “expect private investors to increasingly dominate the earlier stages of [projects’ lifecycles],” who will only later offer public markets stake in their ventures.

By way of explanation, Outlier partner Eden Dhaliwal identified an “[exasperation] over valuations of tokenized networks” that has caused a renewed interest in “equity based blockchain investments,” and away from ICOs. Another source of token frustration is the difficulty of getting a token listen on exchanges, with Outlier suggesting that hundreds of tokens from 2017-18 sales are yet to be listed on a large exchange.

Overall, the story told is one of increasing professionalization of the crypto industry, as professional (private) investors replace retail (public) investors, and take stakes in more polished and fewer projects. CrypoGlobe has been reporting on the increase in institutional interest in cryptoassets even as prices tumble to new year lows.

Other Takeaways

Institutional interest in Zero-Knowledge Proof (ZKP) technology – whose flagship cryptoasset is perhaps Zcash – is growing according to Outlier, who cite EY’s and ING’s experimentation with ZKP during 2018.

The review took special mention of the state of crypto in China, saying that not only is the Chinese government monitoring blockchain transactions, but also that Chinese “[s]ervice providers are also expected to monitor on-chain transactions” and report their findings to the government – although such an attitude would not be exclusive to China according to other sources.


Source
Author: Colin Muller
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Colorado Regulators Shut Down Four More Fraudulent ICO’s

According to a recent press release, Colorado Securities Commissioner Gerald Rome signed orders instructing four companies to cease offering unregistered securities in the state.

Colorado’s Department of Regulatory Agencies (DORA) took a firm action against four Initial Coin Offerings (ICOs). DORA has ordered the companies to immediately stop and refrain from conducting all activities in violation of state finance laws. The latest crackdown brings the total number of “cease-and-desist orders” against cryptocurrency companies in Colorado to 18.

The affected ICOs include Cybersmart Coin Invest, CrowdShare Mining, Cred, and Global Pay Net. While the companies’ locations are unknown, according to a spokesperson for Colorado’s Division of Securities, they advertised their fraudulent products and services to residents of Colorado.

Global Pay Net

According to the press release, Global Pay Net is a company that claims to offer GLP Coins, which provides a blockchain-based international financial platform. The company also listed several prominent figures on its websites who have denied any knowledge of the company.

Cred

The second company is Cred, which according to the report, claims to offer a tokenized mobile application that promotes green energy. The firm markets as an ICO for its cryptocurrency dubbed “Cred (CX).” “The website asserts that “Cred holders can rest assured knowing that their Cred will be worth tangible value,” the post reads.

CrowdShare Mining

The third company is known as CrowdShare Mining (CSM) which claims that it will mine digital coins on behalf of investors through green energy sources. In return, investors will pocket 50 percent of the mining profit.

CyberSmart Coin Invest

The last company is CyberSmart Coin Invest which offers digital token named “CyberSmart Coin (CBST).” According to the site, they use bots to trade on Bitmex and other cryptocurrency exchanges. The site also claims to have a secret method of gaining profit. Investors also get 20-35% dividends on a monthly basis.

At least two more cessation orders are still pending, according to the official announcement.


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SEC Report: Reducing Cryptocurrency Scams Among Their Top Priorities

In the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission’s (SEC) latest annual report, the regulatory authority explained that reducing the number of cryptocurrency-related scams is currently among their top priorities. The report specifically cites initial coin offerings (ICOs) as one such sector of the industry that they are focusing on.

The report comes amidst an exponential increase in crypto-related scams that has resulted from increased public interest and the complex nature of the industry that leads many neophyte investors to fall prey to savvy scams.

Cryptocurrency, DLT, and ICO Markets Their Primary Focuses

In a section of the report titled “Focus on the Main Street Investor,” the agency explains that their main goal is to protect traditional retail investors from falling prey to complex scams that specifically target their lack of technological knowledge.

Naturally, the cryptocurrency industry is one such industry that has a problem with scams due to its unregulated nature, and the SEC states that they are launching multiple initiatives with partner agencies to reduce fraud in the crypto and DLT sectors.

“Additionally, in partnership with the Division’s Cyber Unit and Microcap Fraud Task Force, as well as the Division of Corporation Finance’s Digital Asset Working Group, the RSTF has launched a lead-generation and referral initiative involving trading suspensions related to companies that purport to be in the cryptocurrency and distributed ledger technology space.”

With regards to ICO-related regulation, they explain that in 2018 alone they have already brought 20 stand-alone cases against ICO companies that have been accused of legal misconduct and/or misleading investors.

“Since the formation of the Cyber Unit at the end of FY 2017, the Division’s focus on cyber-related misconduct has steadily increased. In FY 2018, the Commission brought 20 stand alone cases, including those cases involving ICOs and digital assets. At the end of the fiscal year, the Division had more than 225 cyber-related investigations ongoing.”

As for their strategy to reduce fraud and misconduct in the nascent markets, they say that they have focused on increasing the public’s alertness to the amount of fraud, prosecuting cases to the full extent of the law, requiring that issuers have the proper broker-dealer licensing to offer tokens, and by holding platforms accountable for the quality of the tokens being offered.

Despite the SEC being keen on reducing fraud, they have yet to lay out a formal regulatory framework that focuses specifically on cryptocurrencies and ICOs, rather than using existing laws that are geared towards traditional investments.

Thailand’s main regulatory agency (also called the SEC) is one example of an agency that is regulating the markets through the use of specific frameworks that are designed to help the markets progress while still reducing fraud and misconduct.

The Thai SEC states that, with regard to ICOs, funding must be done through approved venues and that token issuers must receive licensing from the government:

“ICO fundraising needs to be done through an ICO portal approved by the SEC. The ICO acceptance criteria may include due diligence and screening of funders from dishonest people. The source code of the smart contract will automatically be enforced against the contract. After the sale, the SEC publishes a copy of the statement on the SEC website.”

There are currently no signs as to whether or not the U.S. SEC will eventually release a similar framework that is designed specifically with cryptocurrencies and token offerings in mind, but until then it is likely that accusations of fraud and misconduct will continue growing.


Source
Author: COLE PETERSEN
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Introducing Ethermium: New DEX crypto exchange

Thanks to the blockchain technology, we are moving towards an economy that does not require third parties to trust in exchange of goods. However, today’s cryptocurrency exchanges are centralized: they are vulnerable to hacking, react poorly to processes associated with the blockchain (for example, hard forks) and are often associated with the risk of regulation by governments. Fortunately, we can recognize the problem, but we can also understand how to tackle it – blockchain project EtherMium tries to meet the obvious needs of the modern community.

EtherMium is a decentralized cryptocurrency exchange based on Ethereum, operating with cryptocurrency pairs and ERC-20 based tokens.The main goal of our project is to earn the trust of traders on a global level and become No. 1 trading service.

In order to achieve this goal as soon as possible, we have developed a highly secured platform that provides access with a large list of not only cryptocurrencies based on ERC20 standard, but  the possibility of participating in ICOs.

EtherMium serves only an informational role, while all funds are stored in users’ wallets. In this case

  • Deals occur under the management of a smart contract, directly between the parties.
  • The risk of hacker attacks is minimal because funds are not stored on the exchange.
  • No intermediaries, control and censorship, no one can block accounts or freeze funds.

Our trading platform uses smart-contracts that allow users to manage private keys, and all trades are performed Peer-To-Peer without any intermediation. The user has the ability to sign each of the transactions with his/her private key, and the Exchange performs the transaction on user’s behalf, committing the output of this operation to the Ethereum blockchain. This approach allows users to update their account balances and order books online. Thus, the ease of use of the decentralized exchange does not decrease the security of the system in any way, because no trade executes without the user’s specific signature.

EtherMium operation principle

Like most other decentralized cryptocurrency exchanges, EtherMium is all about smart-contracts.All funds are stored on a smart-contract that can only be accessed and managed by its owners.

Thus, it can be an excellent basis for exchangers, where neither party should trust the other one or intermediary or meet in person for exchange. Everything provides an ordinary contract.

The Ethereum blockchain is used for a reason. There is no physical office or legal entity. Smart contracts are introducing a new concept of “Code as law”, therefore we do not need to be placed in any jurisdiction as our product operates under strict rules defined in current contract, that cannot be changed or interpreted.

Our platform is characterized by the simple and user-friendly interface. After registration and authorization on ethermium.com, you will see whatever is required to trade is right in front of you (your cryptocurrency wallet balance, trading charts, orders, trading pairs and etc.).

Roadmap

In general, all decentralized exchanges operate on the same principle. EtherMium is no exception. Very soon we plan to launch derivatives trading solution for futures that will allow users to trade crypto assets on other blockchains (Bitcoin, Monero, etc.).

This will provide advanced access to professional and novice traders who play to raise or lower their assets. At the same time, the commission for operations will be several times lower in comparison with centralized cryptocurrency exchanges (Bitfinex, Binance, Kraken, Poloniex, etc.) which charge way more fees (up to 2%).

Another advantage is the ability of short ICOs that no one is currently offering. Anyone can release their token and trade one on the exchange. Thanks to the integrated solution for creating and conducting ICOs based on our DEX exchange users will be able to participate in the ICO directly from EtherMium in a decentralized, anonymous and secure way. With complete anonymity, the trader does not need to identify his / her identity for work, security of funds storage and open source code.

Currently, ICOs collect funds from customers through proprietary collection systems that open up the risk of hacks and theft. We offer the opportunity to raise funds through the EtherMium smart-contract, the ICO will be totally secured, as funds cannot be hacked or stolen.

At this stage, the development is being tested in beta to provide its customers with the best user experience.

Trading pairs on EtherMium

As previously noted, the cryptocurrency exchange supports exclusively digital assets on the Ethereum blockchain and ERC-20 based tokens. At this stage, the platform deals in 1093 cryptocurrency assets.

Theoretically, we have no restrictions on the number of assets we can add to the platform. We must  make sure that the platform is adapted to handle the corresponding number in a user-friendly form.

By opening the appropriate website section, you can monitor them, find out their cost and the dynamics of alterations in rates.

Webpage of available trading pairs

EtherMium customer support

The cryptocurrency trading platform interface includes a question-and-answer  chatbox, where users can turn to representatives of customer support and, accordingly, solve a number of problems. We’ll be glad to answer all questions dealing with service operation.

Customer support chatbox

All you have to do is just make a request – a customer support specialist will respond online as soon as possible.

The cryptocurrency community reaction to the new project

EtherMium trading platform appeared not so long ago, so the number of its users is just extending. At the same time, those users who have already tested  the exchange were able to assess its advantages such as:

  1. Lots of trading pairs
  2. Steady operation
  3. Professional customer support
  4. User-friendly interface

In the near future seek to avail yourself of opportunity to conduct ICOs and to launch derivatives trading solution for futures.

Conclusion

EtherMium is a really worthy project that deserves the cryptocurrency community representatives attention.

EtherMium provides users with immense decentralized ecosystem that allows to trade tokens immediately and also will be suggested such options as advanced financial and conduct ICO soon. All of these features will be implemented in one platform, thus saving time for crypto enthusiasts and making it convenient to use the DEX. EtherMium can change the worldview of those users who consider it is difficult to work with decentralized platforms due to fewer trading tools. Join us and enjoy all the benefits of EtherMium right now.


Source
Author: Adrian Mathieu
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