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ICOs are a dime a dozen these days, but are all of them really successful? With roadmaps than span years to come, it is hard to gauge ‘success’ - however, we can measure their profitability, and that’s what this post is about.
Let’s take a look at the five most profitable ICOs of 2018. These are ICOs that started since January 2018 and have delivered the highest returns against USD. We will take a look at how much they improved on their initial price in terms of their USD and Bitcoin price increase and then take an overview of the project. The returns are checked against the current price, so they may have previously had a higher return on investment.
ICO price: $0.03
Current price: $0.21
Seele calls itself a fourth-generation blockchain project. Looking past the first cryptocurrency Bitcoin, second-generation Ethereum, and 3.0 generation platforms like EOS and DFINITY, it aims to be more efficient and faster. They have proposed a neural consensus algorithm which has the potential for very high scalability. The main idea is that performance and speed increases in line with an increase in the number of nodes.
The project is led by CEO Dr. Bi Wei who was the CTO at the Beijing Datong Blockchain Research Institute. The project was created in a partnership with UCL CBT (University College London Centre of Blockchain Technology) and other researchers and scientists from Asia and the US. It was hit by turmoil in February when scammers stole nearly $1.8 million by posing as Seele admins.
ICO price: $0.02
Current price: $0.10
Quarkchain uses a two-layered blockchain system and claims this will help it deliver up to one million transactions per second (TPS). It will also support smart contracts with Ethereum Virtual Machine (EVM) allowing developers to transfer Ethereum Dapps onto its network. Their main solution for faster payments is by splitting up payment processing into separate data sets that will be spread across different in-house blockchains.
In May, Astronaut Capital announced that they had invested in Quarkchain saying that they are confident in the team. The team comprises of founder Qi Zhou was a software engineer at Facebook (NASDAQ:FB) and has also worked at Dell and Google (NASDAQ:GOOGL). Core Engineer at QuarkChain, Zhaoguang Wang, was a senior software engineer at Facebook. On their advisory team, they have Arun G. Phadke who is a winner of the Benjamin Franklin Medal and Paul Veradittakit, a Partner at Pantera Capital.
ICO price: $0.007
Current price: $0.026
Iotex is a decentralized network for the Internet of Things (IoT). Their testnet alpha, Strive, will be open sourced on June 29. There have been a lot of privacy concerns over IoT applications as once devices are linked up, if a hacker access one, he may be able to access all connected devices. Iotex aims to solve this with a privacy-focused blockchain. They offer lightweight stealth addresses and constant size ring signature to maximize safety.
IoT devices also require a high-throughput of transactions in order to cope with the transaction demand. Iotex solves this by using recommended delegated proof-of-stake (RDPoS). They claim this will support millions of nodes with low latency and without causing the high energy usage of proof-of-work (PoW) methods. They are also focused on cross-chain support, similar to Ethereum’s Plasma.
Their team is packed full of blockchain and technology talent. Co-founder Raullen Chai Is a Ph.D. and Research Scientist in Cryptography at UWaterloo. Head of Crypto R&D at Uber, Security Engineer at Google. Co-founder Qevan Guo holds a Ph.D. in Machine Learning and Computer Vision at the National University of Singapore and was an Engineering Manager and Research Scientist at Facebook. On their advisory team, they have Fan Zhang, who has previously served as a Founding Partner of Sequoia Capital China, and a Director of DFJ ePlanet Ventures.
ICO price: $0.002
Current price: $0.005
Not content with keeping crypto separate from the real world, Pundi X are driving real-world usage by providing a way for any store to accept crypto. It supports Bitcoin, Ethereum, ERC20 tokens, NEM and Stellar. Pundi X provide hardware for businesses to accept payments via mobile devices including paying using contactless technology. They aim to make buying crypto ‘as easy as buying bottled water’ and call themselves the ‘Walmart (NYSE:WMT) and 7-Eleven of cryptocurrency’.
The aims set out in their roadmap to be completed this month include opening 2,000 XPOS units for individual pre-orders and delivering 4,000 XPOS units for corporate orders and 300,000 XPASS cards. In Q3 2018, they aim to establish two offices in North and South America. By the end of the year, they want to launch an annual XPOS summit and deliver 20,000 XPOS units for corporate orders.
Their management team includes CEO and co-founder Zac Cheah, who is the former W3C Chair of HTML5 Interest Group and has spent 12 years in tech in the browser and mobile gaming market. CTO/COO Pitt Huang is an entrepreneur who sold his first Groupon-like company at the age of 25 while President Constantin Papadimitriou (Kiki) was the CEO of two Indonesian fintech companies: Infinetworks and E2Pay.
ICO price: $0.0002
Current price: $0.0004
Holo is a framework for distributed apps (Dapps). It uses peer-to-peer networks to ensure that Dapps can be always online and are censorship resistant. They focus on helping people to own their own data, control their identity, and make transactions without centralized systems. This gives developers the opportunity to create lighter, faster, and cheaper applications. They call them Holochian apps (hApps).
Chief Architect Arthur Brock is the founder and systems architect for the Metacurrency Project which has been operating in the cryptocurrency sphere since 2008. He has been working with alternative currency systems since 2003. Executive Engineer Eric Harris-Braun studied at Yale University and DevOps Mamading Ceesay was a co-founder of London Creative Labs.
It is clear that successful ICOs are not those which create the most hype but those that have solid projects and are making real progress. The majority of ICOs looked at have teams with outstanding track records and highly qualified individuals.
Pundi X stands out for its aim of bringing cryptocurrency into the real world in an accessible way while both Quarkchain and Seele promise to deliver transactions speeds and throughput that can match VISA and other current financial payment systems. All of them delivered returns of at least three times for ICO investors and show the potential of investing in a good ICO.
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