2018 Recap: Move Over ICOs, It’s Time for STOs

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The year 2017 had been the year for Initial Coin Offerings (ICOs) when a number of mostly, blockchain projects used this channel for raising money from sophisticated and unsophisticated investors alike. Anecdotally, investors ‘invested’ in these projects by signing up for a share of tokens/coins (or digital rights), which were meant to give access to goods and services produced by the project, without giving equity/ownership of the company. ICOs were intended to be like IPOs (initial public offerings) without the paperwork, product, financial or regulatory approvals. Naturally, entrepreneurs were drawn to the hype cycle of ICOs, which are best understood as crowdfunding without regulations. This meant that many projects could raise money from investors even in the conceptualization stage – a remote possibility in the venture capital world. With little or no product developments or MVPs to show for, money raised through ICOs shot up to USD 6 billion in…

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