Auscoin Group's vision is to capitalise on the potential to integrate Bitcoin and cryptocurrency into daily life. This will completely change the way the world transacts; revolutionising conventional contracts between individuals, businesses, organisations and everyone in between.
Auscoin are looking to bring bitcoin to the masses. By deploying ATMs throughout Australia and Asia, they are attempting to allow new users to enter the cryptocurrency industry. Aside from raising funds, the token itself plays no role this vision. The whitepaper does mention a potential monthly profit (based on a very small set of data points), however they don’t tie this back to the token either. It is unclear how this token will provide value to investors following the fund raising effort.
The team have no relevant experience in the tech, business or blockchain industries.
Founder Sam Karagiozis is a self declared’hustler’. He is a high school drop out and his longest held job has been serving fries at Maccas. While I know of many success stories from beginnings like this, this does not seem to be one of those. Sam’s “wealth” is credited as coming from his security work and property development company, SK Property. This is questionable, as there is little to no evidence of this company or any of its achievements. Whilst his bio states that there are currently 8 properties under this umbrella, a search of the ASIC insolvency notices page shows that this company was wound up in 2016.
CEO Sean Harris is also from the personnel security industry. This includes 11 years leading the Executive Security Solutions (ESS) organisation in Melbourne. ESS at least does still seem to be operating and is currently a registered business. Although registered in Victoria, the security licenses published on his website (LSF: 733 199 20s and LSAI: 733 199 41s) do not appear to be valid in the Victoria Police security permit holders list.
Chief Marketing Officer Michael Sloggett is a Townsvillian. His publicly available work history begins and ends with being the CEO of a nutrition company based up there.
The website lists a number of team members. I did not, however, see anything in this leadership group to warrant further analysis of the team.
The Auscoin roadmap begins with the critical infrastructure required to launch a blockchain project, website development and marketing. In Q4 2017, they ‘Ramp up Marketing’ and release their whitepaper. In 2018 and 2019, there is a planned roll-out of ATM machines..
Their whitepapers, which are infact marketing papers, do not look anything like typical blockchain whitepapers. This combined with their roadmap, which details more marketing-type activities than anything else, is a massive red flag to investors.
I could not find out how they would tackle the KYC requirements for an exchange. Nor could I find information on how cash is sent to, or collected from, these machines (or if cash is even used at all!). There is zero information regarding the implementation of this token.
Raising $40m USD is a huge endeavor, especially when it is unclear on why they require this much and how they will spend it. According to their own (unverified) estimate, it will cost $15m AUD to roll out the bitcoin ATM network. This leaves a total of about $30m USD unaccounted for. It also shows that they are not relying on the profits of the bitcoin ATMs to fund the future rollout of additional bitcoin ATMs.
With a total valuation of $80m USD, and no purpose or profit linkage to the tokens, I simply can not see where the value to investor lies in this endeavor.
There is very little detail about the token itself. The roadmap mentions an app, however this app is not discussed anywhere in the whitepaper nor website.
It is interesting that the founders promote their assigned tokens as hard-locked, which is great. Typically, this shows that the founders plan to spend time building, developing and proving their project before accessing the funds themselves. I like to see lockup periods that align with the roadmap duration. However, the founders of this coin have agreed to a 36 month lockup period before they can access their assigned tokens. When you consider the lack of utility of the token, and that the roadmap is only about 16 months long, this overly ambitious lockup period is worrying. Do they believe their token is worthless? Or perhaps they do they not plan on producing an actual product or service.
This token first came to my attention via a facebook advert. I intentionally try to seek out Australian blockchain projects and I am exposed to many coin offerings, however this one relied on paid advertising to reach my eyeballs. While not usually this bad, I have yet to see a quality ICO that uses paid facebook ads to find intelligent investors.
The goal is to release no more than half of the tokens (50M) by the end of the ICO period. All remaining tokens (50M plus any leftover from the ICO) are subject to a lockout period of 3 years. After this period, the Auscoin group coins will release coins at a rate of no more than 5M per year. This means that there is a minimum of 13 years until all tokens are released. They will distribute the remaining tokens as follows:
Aside from their vision of making bitcoin more readily accessible by Australians, there is not one single positive to the Auscoin token ICO:
I would be excited to see one of their forecasted 1,200 bitcoin ATMs at my local shopping centre. I do not, however, expect them to be around for long, if at all.
This is one ICO which I will not be going anywhere near.
The author does not hold Auscoin in his portfolio.
No payment or private consultation was sought for this article.
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