Money is king, especially during an encrypted winter.
This is the take-away of a report published Wednesday by the Aion Foundation, which raised $ 23 million in bitcoins, ether and fiat through a symbolic sale in October 2017. Compiled with the help of Deloitte, although not formally controlled by the Big Four accounting firm, the report describes in detail how Aion managed its crypto den, providing a rare level of transparency for a token project.
According to the CEO of Aion Foundation, Matt Spoke, the foundation sold half of the bitcoin and the ether collected for the fiat. Sales were timely to exploit the advantages of encrypted prices from the start of 2018.
Even after spending more than $ 10 million launching its unique blockchain platform and opening offices in Canada, Barbados and China, the non-profit organization had $ 14 million as of October 31 of this year, $ 5.8 million in fiat, the report reads.
"We have liquidated a decent amount of our bitcoin and et which we have collected as revenue to ensure we are stable in this type of period," Spoke told CoinDesk, adding:
"As we continue to invest in our operations we will end up paying off more bitcoins and over the next few months"
The Aion protocol already has active users as the start of the video game ClanPlay that experiments how this network could support applications, said Spoke, but for now the non-profit organization "will rely more heavily on money" to finance its growth.
The foundation has about 18 months of track, according to Spoke, and it will take up to five years because the network offers comparable services with centralized alternatives such as Amazon Web Services. In addition to currently supporting the Ethereum virtual machine, Aion is scheduled to support its Aion Virtual Machine, so developers can use Java tools to create decentralized software by the second quarter of 2019.
Meanwhile, Spoke said his team could request additional funding from encrypted funds and accredited investors in exchange for Aion tokens.
The goal is to avoid redundancies for the 61-person foundation team, modeling in some ways as the ConsenSys ethereal conglomerate, led by Joseph Lubin, as the foundation would sponsor projects through the network.
In the future, the foundation will publish quarterly updates and annual reports and will participate in the Messari disclosure database to increase the trust of the token holders.
The Aion tokens are currently traded on over two dozen exchanges, including large ones like Binance and Bitfinex, according to CoinMarketCap.
Despite that apparent liquidity, Meltem Demirors, founder of Shiny Pony Ventures and chief strategy officer at the CoinShares asset manager, has expressed concern that the foundation has listed its availability of Aion tokens as an asset on its balance sheet.
"I think they should be very careful about this" Demirors He said. "I do not think we have conclusively shown that the token model works."
Both she and Nic Carter, co-founder of Castle Island Ventures, have warned against the symbolic treasures as a substitute for traditional equity investments or employee stock options.
"You have to progressively pay more than that stack as it decreases in price and becomes a forced seller at certain points," Carter said. "Many of these projects are about to face liquidity crises".
Nonetheless, Demirors gave Aion credit for making the revelations. "They are trying to bring transparency and accountability to how they are spending money." All right, "he said.
There are also other risks. The regulators forced some encrypted startups to repay the tokens to buyers, a task that would prove challenging for the Aion Foundation as Spoke said it only had registrations from accredited investors who participated in the pre-sale before the public sale of tokens.
Looking ahead, the base is focused on expanding the platform's usefulness.
"Our grant and donation program was very active and focused a lot on the tools," Spoke said, talking about how to reward external developers with Aion tokens for creating software tools for his platform. "Over time we should not be the most important member [of the Aion ecosystem]".
UPDATE (December 6th, 5:00 pm UTC): This article was updated to clarify that part of the $ 23 million Aion collected last year was in fiat.
Image of Matt Spoke via CoinDesk's archive