How to Participate – AVT tokens can be bought by contributing ETH (Ethereum) tokens
Soft Cap – 2 Million USD
Hard Cap – 15 Million USD
Total Max Market Cap At ICO – 25 Million including company allocation
Exchange Rate: 92 AVT Tokens per ETH
Total Tokens in Circulation At ICO – Total Contributed ETH * 92
(Max tokens in circulation if hard cap is reached is ~10 million)
Aventus is a project which aims to tackle the issue of ticket sales, fraud, and misaligned incentives in the ticket industry. Some 60% of all online ticket sales are usually bought by bots instantly and then flipped on to black markets where the fraudsters can charge exorbitant fees as well as counterfeit copies of purchased tickets. Currently, primary sellers of these tickets have no real incentives to stop this kind of behavior – after all, if your tickets sell out instantly it makes for a great story and some good publicity regarding the perceived popularity of an event.
Aventus aims to tackle this problem head on with the use of blockchain – putting tickets on a digital ledger with identifying information (about the person who bought the ticket, however it will be anonymized), who sold/resold said ticket, and even economic incentives to stop fraud in its tracks. For years the ticket industry has been something that simply has not evolved to modern standards with the advent of computing and the Internet – with Aventus, this is now possible.
One of the biggest positives about Aventus is their great whitepaper – it’s concise, to the point, and actually features technical details and realistic methods of how they will achieve their goals. Time has been put into this project, and one can easily see that they are investing in a project that has real opportunity as opposed to other less trustworthy projects.
Another positive for Aventus is their team – they don’t have any particular individuals on their team who are experienced in blockchain, but each member has years of experience on their respective field – combining their strengths will be crucial to the success of this project, and for a young and hungry team, this should be feasible.
Aventus also has a great community – their slack has almost 2’000 people in it, they have over 3’000 followers on Twitter, and I’ve personally seen their team members reach out to individuals to answer questions and allay concerns.
Finally, the details of the ICO sale itself are explicit and not greedy. They are only seeking to raise 2 Million USD, with a relatively small hard cap at 15 Million USD – investors who are looking to get on the ground floor of a possibly revolutionary project will find that their investment into Aventus will represent a strong portion of the total market cap.
One negative about this project is the use of cryptocurrency itself when marketed towards users – mainstream consumers currently have no idea what cryptocurrency is, and while Aventus takes measures to “hide” this settlement layer from the typical user, event organizers and marketers will get no such benefits. The volatility of something like a cryptographic token may turns heads for some, but for others it might simply be too dangerous to switch from a more standard system.
Another possible downside is the use of oracles as part of its technology layer – alone, a blockchain simply can’t get information from the outside world. In order to feed accurate, relevant data to a blockchain (to execute the Aventus smart contract), an oracle will have to be used (one example they noted was to judge the current market price of tickets). Details on oracles from Aventus are sparse, and if they haven’t managed to solve this problem, the entire project could fall flat.
Aventus is a solid concept, and one that is definitely worth looking into. The team is solid, the idea has definite potential, and the ICO details are fair and provide plenty of room for future growth. Don’t miss out on this one.
How to Participate – HERO tokens are an ERC20 asset, contributors will use ETH (Ethereum) to participate.
Soft Cap – Currently Unknown
Hard Cap – 250’000 ETH (79 Million USD at current prices)
Total Max Market Cap At ICO – 98 Million USD including company HERO allocation
Exchange Rate: 200 HERO Tokens per ETH
Total Tokens in Circulation At ICO – Total Contributed ETH * 200
(Max tokens in circulation if hard cap is reached is 50 million)
Pawn Hero is a Philippines based company focused on providing pawn services to its customer base. Pawning in the Philippines is a growing industry, mainly due to the large amount of unbanked citizens in the country and surrounding areas. These citizens, often lacking the ability to enter into loans or create savings accounts, must resort to other methods to fund their activities. A typical use-case might involve pawning a valuable for a set period of time in order to pay a bill on time and avoid overcharges, or for larger loans, enabling startups with the use of credit. Pawn Hero differentiates itself from its competitors by operating completely digitally, using mailing services to pick up items from its users and paying out loans in the form of debit cards or ATM withdrawals.
Pawn Hero is seeking to raise an ICO in order to evolve its business further, enabling larger collateralized loans, more accurate record keeping on the blockchain, and saving costs by removing the infrastructure of identity checks (which would also be kept on chain).
Most emerging markets lack centralized credit scoring.
Blockchain enables every person to have a unique and verifiable reputation-based identity that allows them to participate equally in the economy. By combining non-traditional data sources from social media profiles, previous work experience and transaction history with advanced machine learning techniques we expand our offering to provide access to unsecured loans.
Pawn Hero is currently in an emerging market in Southeast Asia – regarding pawnshops themselves, they have grown massively due to the unbanked population problem, reaching over 5 billion US Dollars in total market cap. Pawn Hero, which was started in 2015 is a rather small competitor compared to other more established franchises – still, its advantages and user experience (they have a simple mobile app and easy site to pawn items on, as 50% cheaper lending rates compared to average pawn shops) provide a possible entryway to increasing market saturation.
If Pawn Hero were to capture even 10% of the market in the future, this would mean a total valuation of 500 million US Dollars, or a 5 times return on investment of HERO tokens should the hard cap be hit during the ICO.
Pawn Hero also has an pre-existing Minimum Viable Product, which is their Pawn Hero web site – having personally gone on their site and tested the service myself, I can say that it’s very well done and has the aura of a business that will easily grow in time. The link to the web site can be found here. Finally, it’s appreciated and noticed that 80% of HERO tokens will be given out to the public during the sale, one of the largest figures we’ve seen in ICO’s.
Pawn Hero ultimately feels like you’re investing in exactly their company and nothing else. While they speak vaguely and mysteriously about their actual use of blockchain technology, there is no real meat to this story. Ultimately, all of Pawn Hero’s concept can be reduced to a money drive to further fund their company – even usage of the blockchain itself is likely not something that is necessary for this kind of project. Looking over the team behind Pawn Hero leaves something to be desired, as there is very little in the way of real blockchain developers – a definite misstep if there is to be one, when the entire purpose of this ICO is to leverage the advantage of blockchain.
Secondly, there is a large question of future potential as a project. Pawn shops are only utilized in South East Asia because of the lack of banking for individuals – once banking systems begin to accept these unbanked citizens (or, a blockchain project that actually addresses this problem), I foresee that Pawn Hero will likely lose a lot of steam and popularity unless they pivot.
Finally, Pawn Hero has several conflicting ideals and statements when it comes to their marketing and their actual solution. They tout that Hero can be used to generate credit and create “banking for the unbanked” people of the Philippines and neighboring areas, but their entire product has very little to do with banking itself and more to do with funding their current infrastructure.
Pawn Hero is a great concept, but ultimately one that I feel has no business in blockchain. It has a large hard cap at almost 100 million dollars (at the time of this writing), little in the way of an all-star developement team, and few details regarding how they will actually use the advantages of blockchain. For these reasons, I believe that this ICO must be passed up.
How to Participate – RPX tokens will be sold in NEO, requiring users to contribute NEO as opposed to BTC.
Soft Cap – 15 Million USD
Hard Cap – 15 Million USD
Total Market Cap At ICO – 37 Million USD including company RPX allocation
Exchange Rate: 1’000 RPX Tokens per NEO
Total Tokens in Circulation At ICO – (15,000,000 / (USD/NEO rate)) * 1’000
(At current NEO price of 34.18, this would mean a circulation of 438MM RPX)
In today’s information age, there is no shortage of market data and financial research. Yet, due to historically entrenched market dynamics, the economics of financial research production and distribution are dominated by only a few gatekeepers.
This prevents independent analysts from having a voice, while research consumers are forced to accept whatever coverage is already available. What market participants truly need is context – providing relevance in addition to scale.
Red Pulse intends to employ the $RPX cryptocurrency as a mechanism to fairly and directly incentivize research producers for their works, while providing research consumers with a mechanism to guide research coverage and provide fair compensation.
Red Pulse is a pre-existing China-based company that provides its clients with real-time market analysis, verified data, and news aggregation in the financial/investment sectors. Red Pulse’s current clients include investment banks, asset managers, retail investors, and others. The RPX token and ICO is a bold attempt at creating a more robust digital research platform, built for a wider variety of data aggregation and analysis than is currently possible. A semi-decentralized form of review by financial experts will be rewarded on this new system in the form of the RPX token. Holders will be incentivized to keep their tokens as the emerging markets in China attract more financial attention, while researchers and consumers of data will be rewarded with RPX tokens for their work, or by real actionable data curated by the Red Pulse platform.
Red Pulse will use quality scores and popularity systems, including a voting system similar to Steemit in order to further enforce that good research is done, as well as implementing a Natural Language Processing software that will be used to combat things such as plagiarism, double posting, and untrue data.
This is the first of its kind in the world, and set in an emerging market such as China, Red Pulse is in perfect position to take advantage of all of the great features that decentralization has to offer along with their own decades of combined experience that Red Pulse can leverage towards success.
In contrast to more established financial markets such as the US and Europe, where institutional investors make up more than 90% of participants by trading activity.
China’s stock market activity is dominated by individual investors, representing an estimated 80% of all trading activity.
Although investors are very quickly becoming adept at developing their own investment strategies and views, most investors are newcomers to the market and have only a few years of experience, given how nascent China’s capital markets are, and the relative short period of time that individual investors have been given access.
Red Pulse was founded by Jonathan Ha, Stanley Chao, and Peter Alexander. Combined, these three have worked for such companies as LG, IBM, Dell, and Nationwide. They all have over 10 years of experience in their respective fields, and can be easily be seen as an all-star team of managers for this new project.
The Red Pulse platform has already been running since 2015, which is a big plus to early investors looking for Minimum Viable Products. A concise roadmap is stated in the Red Pulse whitepaper, neither promising the world nor selling their platform short – Red Pulse is an extremely pragmatic project, being both realistic and ambitious in their goals.
The ICO sale will also be limited to just 15 million dollars, which is absolutely a major plus for investors. This means that tokens will be relatively rare, with less holders and more profits to be made.
The biggest challenge that Red Pulse as a platform will face is getting consumers and researchers onto their platform – similar to starting a new social network web site, you require a vast amount of initial “seed” members to get the platform going. Red Pulse has taken steps to mitigate this issue, however, as investors of the RPX platform will be the same demographic that would be interested in their product (providing a double dip essentially in terms of advertising) as well as their current users of the Red Pulse service who will migrate to the new system.
Red Pulse is a project that will likely not require any real form of marketing, as the benefits of this kind of platform (should it be successful) will bring in masses of people by itself.
Red Pulse is my favorite project of the year, and one of the top ICO’s to be investing in for 2017 and beyond. Don’t miss out on this amazing project that simply ticks all of the check-boxes for an extremely lucrative investment.
How to Participate – The sale will be done in 3 phases, with users able to contribute BNB (Binance) BTC (Bitcoin) or ETH (Ethereum) tokens during each phase of the ICO.
Soft Cap – 10’000 BTC / 40 Million USD
Hard Cap – None
Total Market Cap At ICO – 40 Billion TRX Tokens * Final Token Price
TRON, also known as TRONIX, is a token created for the Chinese digital entertainment industry. The problem that TRON solves is multifold – as we approach ever increasing variations of blockchain technologies, it will become difficult to choose the best ones for each job. TRON is cross-compatible with existing blockchains such as EOS, Bitcoin, Ethereum, and Qtum. TRON is a platform that leverages the advantages of all of these blockchains and enables developers on the TRON network to make the best use of these technologies. Usage of the TRON network will also lessen the requirement of new services to gather data from an individual or group – that input data will already be saved to the blockchain. In similar fashion to how you can now sign up to services such as Twitter, Facebook, and others using your G-Mail credentials, TRON will enable users to sign up to new services and products seamlessly and with the touch of a button.
TRON was founded by Justin Sun, who served as Chief Representative of Ripple in China, was mentored under Jack Ma, and most importantly created Peiwo, which is the largest pay-to-chat application in China. Peiwo currently has over ten million registered accounts and one million active users per month, which is set to be the first TRON-enabled application this September. Those looking for Minimum Viable Products will surely be pleased with this kind of investment.
Some of TRON’s investors include the infamous Jihan Wu, who is the CEO of BITMAIN, as well as other prominent Chinese businessmen such as Clash of King creator Binshen Tang, and Chaoyong Wang, founder of the ChinaEquity Group.
This project has an all-star team backing and investing it, a great concept, and an actual product that is already used by millions of people. The problem is that the ICO is uncapped – in similar fashion to projects such as Ethereum and Tezos, uncapped ICO’s can lead to massive overbuying. This massive overbuying during the ICO phase can lead to reduced profits once the tokens are on live markets, and with as much hype that China currently has regarding cryptocurrencies, it’s a rather safe bet that this ICO will likely finish with somewhere in the neighborhood of 100 million market cap on release.
It’s also rather a slow project, as some of the stated timelines for their roadmaps extend as far as 2025 – quite the long hold time for an investor looking to leverage faster crypto gains.
This is an absolutely incredible project, with great backing and a surefire system to get this product in front of people and get lots of use in the future. The aspect of an uncapped ICO however, leaves something to be desired with TRON.
So you want to invest in Crypto? This guide is meant for people who may have previously had an interest in this kind of technology, but as of yet have not dug too much deeper into this burgeoning empire of bits and code. Cryptocurrency is where millionaires are made and where dreams come true, but it’s also a place full of dangers lurking behind every corner. One wrong step here and you’ll be among many of the sad stories of lost accounts, stolen wallets, or gambled-away earnings. I’ll be your guide as I take you along this harrowing cryptocurrency journey and, with diligence and patience, you too can benefit from the fruits of this growing economy. So let’s talk basics.
What is Bitcoin?
Put simply, Bitcoin is a digital form of currency that has several advantages over your typical Fiat (paper) currency. Some examples of Bitcoin’s advantages include the ability to send it overseas to other countries with no cost (or very little), the ability to keep your funds privately, and increased security compared to things like credit cards and paper money. If someone were to steal your Bitcoin wallet, it would be useless to them without knowing the private key – but more on this later.
Why is it so valued?
Bitcoin is the first of its kind (asides from the now-closed E-Gold), created by a man named Satoshi Nakamoto. While initially, Bitcoin was worth fractions of a penny (in 2009), it slowly grew in strength and network effect, completely undisturbed by the worlds financial systems. Bitcoin would grow over time, in dimly lit computer rooms and closed off hacker communities, earning reputation and a massive influx of new users in just a few short years. As of today, the price of a single Bitcoin is now over 4’000 U.S Dollars. Bitcoin is capped at 21 million coins, making it extremely rare compared to even the amount of dollar bills in circulation.
It is also decentralized, using computers from all over the world to support the infrastructure that Bitcoin uses, known as the “Blockchain”. With blockchain technology, Bitcoin can evade the control of governments and function as a truly democratic form of currency, giving the power back to the people and away from political interests. Bitcoin is also irreplacable – many who don’t know much about it simply believe Bitcoin to be some lines of code that are randomly decided to have value – this couldn’t be further from the truth. While there are as of this post over 800 digital currencies (known as Altcoins), Bitcoin has remained the top dog in the race of decentralized currency, due to its purity of code, rarity, and network effect – no other coin even comes close to Bitcoin when it comes to the amount of users.
Who controls Bitcoin?
This is the beauty of decentralized systems – no one, not even (the as of now missing) Satoshi Nakamoto can make any changes, updates, or revisions to the code of Bitcoin without requiring a significant amount (usually over 90%) of Bitcoin miners to agree to a change. Because Bitcoin miners operate from mining rigs all over the world (and the cost of entry to being a miner is relatively cheap), it means that the system is completely democratic, and there is no “dictator” at the top leading the way. Even if the government wanted to, they could not stop the proliferation of Bitcoin, and with the recently launched Blockstream Satellite, Bitcoin is poised to be functional even outside of the boundaries of the Internet itself.
How do I purchase Bitcoin?
For most users, the easiest place to buy Bitcoins will be at coinbase.com. From there, you can enter credit card or bank details and pay for Bitcoin there. Coinbase is a legal US based company, and your money is insured up to 250’000$ USD in the event of thefts, hacks, or otherwise when it’s in a coinbase wallet (they are not, however, responsible if your password gets hacked or the error was on your end). You’ll buy coins there at the current exchange rate of Bitcoins to US Dollars, which is always reflective in the price. For example, if a Bitcoin costs 4’000$ today and you buy one, you can later sell it back to Coinbase for 5’000$ (if the current exchange price reaches that point). Bitcoin price is usually always growing, however like any growing system, there are points and times where price is in a decline. These present excellent buying opportunities for those who are looking to increase their Bitcoin exposure, and you can get some relatively cheap coins by doing this.
I have Bitcoin, now what?
Now you have a few options; you can either leave your Bitcoin in your Coinbase wallet, or move your Bitcoins to a wallet of your own that you own. There are many different types of wallets, including Web based and hardware wallets. Personally, I own a Trezor, which is a hardware based wallet. It features great security, and if you’re investing more than, say 1’000$ or so into Bitcoin, is your most secure option when storing currency.
Remember, Bitcoin gives us power over banks, but in doing so we become our own banks – this means we are responsible for the security of our funds, and it should be of utmost importance. After you’ve decided on a wallet, you can send the funds out of Coinbase using the public address key – on all wallets this will be a string of numbers and letters. For example, my Bitcoin address looks like this:
In order to send funds to my private wallet, I would set the destination address as: 1PyyinjbsWLGpbmnjQqGg49nS4ESeC88aB
If you’re looking to send Bitcoin to your own private address, yours will look similar – simply copy and paste the address from your chosen wallet into the destination address on Coinbase.
After that, wait some time – the blockchain needs to confirm your transactions which can take anywhere from 5 – 15 minutes. Once confirmed, your funds will show up in your destination address. The advantage of having a private wallet is that you own your private keys – on creation of a wallet, you will usually have a pass phrase or string of numbers and letters. This is your private key (not to be confused with your address!) – write this down and keep it somewhere safe, as it is the only way to actually use the funds in your wallet. If you lose your private key, your funds are gone.
And that’s it! You’re now a crypto investor. You can also start paying other people in Bitcoin for goods and services by sending them BTC in similar fashion to the way you sent it to your wallet – just be careful how much you send, as you don’t want to mistakenly send your entire balance.
Bitcoin is a wonderful product, as it liberates us from central banking institutions and government currency control. It is also dangerous, and security should always be your primary concern. Remember that the price of Bitcoin is always rising – with some speculators placing it above tens of thousands of even millions of dollars a coin, it’s a perfect time to start investing in this bold new technology.
There is a certain mass psychology in the Ethereum community with respect to its competitors, Ethereum’s design/governance principles, and even generally unrelated projects such as Bitcoin. Make any singular attack or critique against Ethereum, its potential, or its “based god” Vitalik will likely leave you open to a vitriolic backlash that borders on the edge of insanity. In the eyes of those who support Ethereum, kids and grown adults alike coalesce to form an echo chamber of ideas, support, and more fatally, the rejection of criticism of anything challenging their status quo.
This kind of group-think is dangerous to any society, but especially so when it comes to technology and building the future. After all, that’s what Ethereum’s claim to fame is – “the future of smart contracts” or some other trite that is needlessly repeated over and over until the voice of the crowd drowns out dissenting opinion. Sharding won’t work? The Ethereum blockchain can’t scale to meet world demand? Oracle bribing and Turing Completeness pose dangerous threats to the stability of the platform? No, these aren’t legitimate concerns, but FUD! If you can’t understand that this is the future, then get out of the way! Obviously, this echo-chamber mentality of parties with the same interest repeating and consoling each other is evident enough in politics. Once you add in the prospect of money and people putting in their house mortgages, savings accounts, or college tuition fees towards a product, it’s going to magnify the pathology even more.
It’s important in this industry (whether you’re a miner, investor, trader, or otherwise) to always be paying attention to your own biases. Keep them in check, because falling in love with one product over another equally viable one can lead you to financial ruin. There was once the era of Bitcoin Maximalists, investors who truly believed in the network effect and capability of Bitcoin to such an extent that Alts were nothing more than trash, humorously nicknamed “shitcoins” and ignored by the vast majority of these Bitcoin Maximalists. Of course, we know how that turned out – as of today, Bitcoin Dominance is more like Bitcoin Majority, making up less than half of the market cap of all cryptocurrencies combined. The Bitcoin Maximalists took a hit for their ideology where it hurt most – their wallets. And the remaining Maximalists? The ones who could get over their biases stopped talking about Bitcoin and started putting their money in alts.
"May 2013, I got a whole pile of shit from Mr. Peter Todd, because I'm a Bitcoin maximalist. I'm still a Bitcoin maximalist." CW, Scammer
But this isn’t an Ethereum or a Bitcoin piece. This is about Bitcoin Cash.
Bitcoin Cash, the hotly debated new kid on the digital block, started out with less of a bang and more of a whimper. Their first block took around 13 hours to actually show up on the network and they’ve been having issues since, namely with the ongoing difficulty adjustment and the ironic tx malleability bugs that have started to crop up on the network. For the first few days, Bitcoin Cash was also almost entirely locked up on hardware wallets or otherwise, and those that could move their corresponding BCH tokens had to wait almost an entire day for their transactions to get confirmed on the Bitcoin Cash network. The result? A massive pump due to limited supply and relatively high demand:
Now that’s a pump.
What followed was the floodgates being opened – massive amounts of confirmed deposits of Bitcoin Cash came in, exchanges started accepting the currency, and most of it was dumped on the open market, crashing the price down to as low as 150$ before things slowed down. Here’s where the cult mentality part comes in, however:
Turns out most people, in their ideological rage, dumped all of the free BCH they got on the open market the second it was available to them. This made the actual price of the coin ridiculously cheap compared to where it would likely be – in essence, people sold themselves short. They either believed that Bitcoin was simply superior and that Bitcoin Cash didn’t have a chance, wanted to cash in some free money, or simply sold out of spite of Jihan Wu and company.
The next question you have to ask yourself is, “who actually bought all of this Bitcoin Cash?” For every seller there’s a buyer. This part is completely my own speculation, but I personally don’t see Jihan Wu and Roger Ver as the idiots that people in the Bitcoin community make them out to be. I believe that this entire event was planned months in advance and executed with people being none the wiser. What they did was possibly the greatest hat trick that has ever been seen in the crypto space. What did they do? Let me explain.
It’s common knowledge that miners will always gravitate toward whatever chain is most profitable at the time – it’s a simple aspect of game theory that we can rely on to support blockchain technology. Let’s take a look at the current differences between Bitcoin and Bitcoin Cash’s profitability to get a better picture of what I mean:
Bitcoin Cash, while admittedly starting out slow, has been having a meteoric rise in terms of its profitability in relation to the Bitcoin chain. While initially, it was over 11 times more profitable to mine Bitcoin, this gap has lessened at a frightening pace. Once Bitcoin Cash reaches around 500-700$, it will at that point be more efficient to mine that chain over Bitcoin.
Considering that BITMAIN owns most of the hash power of Bitcoin, and they have pushed Bitcoin Cash themselves, there’s no debate that Jihan wants to make Bitcoin Cash the dominant blockchain. At this point it’s simply a matter of driving the price of Bitcoin Cash up to the required levels as to make it more profitable than Bitcoin. Once this happens, BITMAIN can swap all of their hashpower to the now more lucrative version of the chain, leaving the original Bitcoin in a weakened state, with a small fraction of current hashpower:
What’s the easiest way to drive the price of a currency up? Supply and demand – and most people walked right into this trap, quickly selling off their Bitcoin Cash to others for reasons stated above. Who bought all of this seemingly worthless Bitcoin Cash?
In Jimmy Song’s overview of Bitmain, he estimated the company to have a valuation of around 1 billion dollars, with about 200 million dollars in profits this year off of their AntMiner’s alone. It’s difficult to find financial data on Bitmain as it is a privately held Chinese company, however it’s certainly possible and likely that this was orchestrated by the company to buy everyone’s cheap Bitcoin Cash. With the lowest valuation of the BCH tokens at 150$, it would only take around 2.2 billion dollars in total to buy out the entire Bitcoin Cash network at this price (15 million coins in circulation multiplied by 150).
That’s speculating that absolutely everyone sold their BCH (they didn’t), that Bitmain had no Bitcoin in their wallets at the time of the fork (they almost certainly did), that no one is working together with Bitmain to orchestrate this scheme (highly unlikely), and that you need 100% of the tokens in order to control the market (even something like 30% is likely enough).
If this gambit actually works, Bitcoin Cash will be the predominant chain – whether for a short amount of time or more permanently largely does not matter. Once people see the signs that a potential “flippening” might occur, they’ll buy back those same BCH tokens they sold at a premium, thus driving demand and lowering the network effect of Bitcoin. At this point, mass panic might start to hit the markets, and we all know what happens when traders start panicking.
It’s a dangerous game that’s being played here. One is best served by remaining vigilant, keeping an open mind to new information, and thinking their moves carefully. In the case of Bitcoin Cash, hedging might be the last, best option for those who have already liquidated their positions.
Welcome back everyone to my continuing analysis on some of the top cryptocurrencies that you should be investing in. If you haven’t read part one, you can find it here. Today I’m going to go over 5 Mid Cap picks – cryptocurrencies and assets that as of yet have not hit it big time and are under a 100 million dollar market cap. These are riskier picks than big caps simply due to less stability, however the ideas are solid and the gains will be much more explosive in this tier.
Edgeless – EDG
In a world where it can be difficult to find actual use cases for blockchain and its technology (mainly due to how new it is), Edgeless gives us one of the most obvious answers to the usecase problem: provably fair gambling.
Currently, online gambling is a 50 billion dollar industry, and despite this, gamblers and users of online gambling software have many complaints such as the house advantage, rake, and even scandals. Edgeless promises to get rid of all of these entirely, and provides a service with a 0% house edge – it is a completely fair game, and Edgeless bets that they will make money simply due to players themselves not playing perfectly (if every player played perfectly, they would come out 50/50)
Edgeless is currently sitting at at 38 million dollar market cap. Quite a ways to go to reach that 60 billion.
For such an auspicious project, it’s hard to find any real drawbacks to it. One possible problem is that players will simply play to the best of their ability in order to gain an edge against the system in games such as Poker, where you can make positive Expected Value (EV) maneuvers against the house. However, there are far more unskilled players that will use the platform compared to skilled ones, and this is only one game where +EV is possible. Thus, downside risk is quite minimal.
Etheroll is a competing service that offers provably fair dice rolling and gambling. The advantage that Edgeless has over DICE however, is that Etheroll is only a dice game while Edgeless plans to include games such as Poker, Blackjack, and more. In addition, Edgeless has a 0% house edge compared to Etheroll’s 1% house edge, thus making it the clear winner if you’re a gambler looking for a platform.
With such clear advantages, low current market cap, and large potential for future adoption and gains, Edgeless is my top pick out of all the mid-cap coins for crypto investment opportunities.
BlockNet – BLOCK
Blocknet is a project aiming to provide inter-connectivity between blockchains and provide the advantages of all of them to the user without ever having to worry about which blockchain to use. As an example, you might want to pay someone privately, but instead of converting your funds from Bitcoin to Monero and back to Bitcoin again, you could simply use Blocknet to carry out this service for you:
No single blockchain could carry the load of storing and serving humanity’s data. There is already a vast array of technologies upon discrete, isolated blockchains. Together they are capable of realising the vastly disruptive power of a decentralised internet – if they could be made to work together.
The Blocknet is designed as infrastructure for the emerging token ecosystem. Any service or orchestrated sequence of microservices provided by dapps may be delivered over the Blocknet’s infrastructure.
Using decentralized exchange, these services are intrinsically monetizable, removing the friction and high costs of traditional payment networks – friction which has prevented the monetisation of the bulk of the API ecosystem.
Due to the decentralized exchange, consumers of a service may pay in their native token even if the service consumes a different token.
Blocknet is an extremely complex project – bridging together blockchains is no easy task, and their success as a platform will depend entirely on the scalability and strength of their XBridge protocol. It’s possible to have bugs and errors which would reduce the credibility of this already hard-to-understand product and people may decide to simply do these operations themselves. If Blocknet can make the process as simple as clicking a button, it will be a great boon to their future growth potential.
Blocknet has several competitors that have risen up including Polkadot, Cosmos, Internet of Coins, Supernet and others. The advantage that Blocknet will have over all of these however, is its technology – I’ve compared the tech advantages of each of these infrastructures and Blocknet has the best features of all. Other attempts at unifying the blockchain come close, but there is usually a feature or two that are missing (that Blocknet provides) which make it the clear winner. There will likely be some more comparisons made between Blocknet and Polkadot in the future, but that project is still too new to make comparisons.
Blocknet takes the best features of each blockchain and combines them in such a way as to make transactions instant (only limited by the confirmation times of the used chains), fully decentralized (compared to other blockchain networks) and lightweight, offering the chance to use the powerful advantages of blockchain even on weaker devices such as mobile phones.
Their decentralized exchange promises an even faster experience for trader/investors as well as the capability of keeping your own private keys when doing any kind of trading – while it’s not necessarily the main focus of the Blocknet project, this should not be left as an afterthought, as a fully functioning decentralized exchange (similar to the Counterparty DEX) with enough mainstream appeal can move mountains.
Ubiq – UBQ
Whereas Ethereum and other Smart Contract platforms attempt to mass market their product and software, the team at Ubiq chose to move the other way and narrow their focuses. Ubiq is focusing primarly on the FinTech (financial technology) industry and aims to be the premiere enterprise solution for professional companies looking for reliable, affordable solutions.
I don’t often mention developer team as they are a small part of my overall analysis, but Ubiq is backed by Julian Yap, who himself has gone through almost all of the codebases of every cryptocurrency and asset that has been added to the popular Bittrex exchange, giving him professional status in this burgeoning space as well as the experience and knowledge that he and his team will be able to leverage to improve the Ubiq system.
Ubiq’s strength in being a niche platform could prove to be a downside in the future – while it is simple for Ubiq to implement code that is created on the Ethereum chain (as it is a fork of Ethereum), this will have to be done sparingly and reliably. No company is going to trust Ubiq in the future with highly sensitive operations if their code is not absolutely up to par and at a greater standard than more generalized platforms like Ethereum.
Syscoin is another great blockchain based project that is attempting to bridge the gap between distributed ledgers and business application, and while it may initially seem like these two are direct competitors, Syscoin and Ubiq are not intensely battling for the same market share. Whereas Syscoin is more interested in delivering business solutions to individuals, storefronts, and online marketplaces, Ubiq is focused on providing services to more corporate companies and backend systems.
Ubiq has great developers, a solid concept without going too far into territory where they can bite off more than they can chew (unlike Ethereum, Ubiq is a much more secure chain). This is one solid project that has an immense room for growth and one of my top picks for 2018 and beyond.
TenX – PAY
TenX is blockchains killer app – applying cryptocurrency to the real world and enabling users and holders of cryptocurrency to spend them as they wish, at any store in the world using their TenX VISA debit card. Users no longer need to liquidate their positions in, say Digibyte, to Bitcoin in order to spend it using more traditional Bitcoin debit card services. With TenX you have the capability to spend your blockchain assets and cryptocurrencies at any time, instantly, and with no fees.
So TenX is basically what I had always envisioned as the natural evolution of crypto currencies. Looking to invest.
TenX largely depends on the functionality of the COMIT Network – a brand new infrastructure created to allow for swapping of crypto tokens through blockchains, similar to Blocknet. However, COMIT will require a large amount of users to be using the network in order to find the liquidity to be able to convert a lot of these coins. For example, if you’re looking to spend some Digibyte and few people on the network wants Digibyte then you’ll likely pay a large spread fee to Liquidity Providers – this fee will still likely be magnitudes lower than current payment systems but people largely prefer static fees as opposed to dynamic ones.
Monaco and Tokencard, in my opinion, are both weaker products overall. In the case of Monaco, they only provide Bitcoin and Ethereum assets, while TenX will eventually add any cryptocurrencies that fit their minimum requirements as specified in the COMIT whitepaper. On the other hand, Token is strictly Ethereum-based, which removes yet another viable asset for spending in the real world (Bitcoin).
The TenX team has created a wonderful product here, and should the COMIT network and Liquidity Providers function to a high level, mainstream adoption will take a huge leap forward. Taking an esoteric concept like cryptocurrency and applying it to well known concepts such as debit cards is a master stroke and an investor would be remiss not to have some PAY tokens as part of their digital assets portfolio.
BitBay – BAY
BitBay, in plain terms, is a decentralized eBay. Not only are eBay and Amazon the only relevant services people can use in the current day if they’re looking to sell their products, they are also highly centralized, tyrannical companies that leave the seller at the mercy of the buyer. For anyone who has ever used eBay/Amazon, they can attest to the high fees and bias towards buyers.
BitBay attempts to change all that, making e-commerce operate entirely off of Smart Contract. The system works in such a way that the buyer and seller are put on equal ground – they must both deposit money into the Smart Contract – this way both parties are incentivized (by the escrowed money) to work together and resolve the Contract. BitBay is also Peer to Peer as opposed to blockchain – it’s an interesting move, especially in crypto. To someone with the hammer of blockchain, every problem can look like a nail – BitBay is a more refined solution to the problem of centralized marketplaces.
BitBay is currently selling for 2 cents per token, with plans to peg the currency to 1 dollar.
One of the downsides of decentralizing a marketplace like eBay is exactly that – for most novice buyers and sellers, they are likely much better off trusting and paying a third party (such as eBay) to take care of all of the disputes and make sure things get sent on time, etc. For more professional sellers, however, using BitBay becomes the clear choice once the market moves in that direction as they will save up to 10% or more on fees by using the BitBay platform over eBay/Amazon.
That’s also a second possible downside however – BitBay will require mass user adoption, which as of yet remains to be seen if it can be done. BitBay will likely need a large marketing team and strategy in order to secure a large initial following of members with which to springboard the platform and attain more market share.
Syscoin is yet again a competitor in this space, as BitBay and Syscoin do compete for the same marketshare. The advantage that BitBay leverages over Syscoin, however, is that BitBay is Peer to Peer – it doesn’t use blockchain as its basic infrastructure. The ultimate result of this is that BitBay will simply be faster than a blockchain-based architecture that has to continually stay synchronized to a server (without light nodes) and download the massive amounts of data that a marketplace would entail (images, descriptions, videos, etc.)
OpenBazaar is a more powerful competitor, offering many of the same features of BitBay and a superior marketing team, which is a big plus to OpenBazaar. However, BitBay wins out on the user experience aspect as OpenBazaar requires what essentially amounts to trusted third parties to mediate and settle disputes while BitBay is a fully trust-less exchange between two parties and those two parties alone. For this reason, BitBay has the clear advantage, and once they start focusing efforts towards marketing the product, it will easily be able to outpace OpenBazaar.
BitBay is a great piece of technology that has advantages by not being blockchain – individuals such as Chris DeRose often have the question of why do we even use blockchain in the first place, and this is a good query. Blockchain can be slow, inefficient, and overall a massive data and CPU hog – the key was never blockchain but decentralization. With that concept in mind, BitBay looks to be the finest solution we have to the centralized marketplace problem, and is a great investment for 2018 and beyond.
Join me next time as we delve deeper into the mid-cap cryptocurrencies and go over 5 more amazing picks to invest in. Remember to play the long game, and happy trading.