ICOs continue to gain momentum. However, it is difficult for those interested in investing in these new coin offerings to assess which are trustworthy. ICO HeadStart provides a means to address this dilemma, which through a pre-screening mechanism.
HeadStart is a fundraising platform that curates the most promising ICOs. The purpose is to perform the due diligence test so that those using the platform have assurance that the offerings are stable and legitimate. This is through the ‘ICO HeadStart Seal of Approval’.
To understand how ICO HeadStart goes through this screening process, Digital Journal caught up with Nawid Habib, the ICO HeadStart Founder.
Digital Journal: Thanks for the interview. How important is blockchain technology becoming in the world of business?
Nawid Habib: With blockchain technology, you have been given the opportunity to carry out financial transactions yourself, with more reliability than a bank can ever give you. That is why many tens of millions of people worldwide are already attracted to blockchain.
The blockchain community will continue to cause an economic revolution. True potential value of companies and projects will be available for the community, for the crowd, for everybody. The large financial centralized institutions will no longer be the only ones to profit from the growth of young companies with smart ideas. The potential value of the entire economy will be at the fingertips of the crowd.
DJ: How about ICOs, how important will cryptocurrencies become?
Habib: There are seeds for massive transformations of the real world, a phenomenon that should be embraced by financial incumbents. Tokens allow economic participation at the protocol layer of a next-generation Internet due to emergence of decentralization, smart contracts and cryptocurrencies. Cryptocurrencies and the blockchain ledger are changing the way companies and people transact globally. ICOs provide unprecedented opportunities in the world of crypto finance. This phenomenon is growing at an extremely rapid pace and, while not being comparable one-on-one, blows crowdfunding and venture capital out of the water.
DJ: It can be confusing for consumers to work out which ICOs to trust. Is there a solution for this?
Habib: This is actually one of the main reason we started our concept. When we started ICO HeadStart, our vision was to help the community to get access to the safest and most promising ICOs on the market. So, we built a platform that lets backers and project creators both benefit the most from the crypto revolution. Not just with the help of industry insiders, but rather with the help of any user – the wisdom of the crowd.
We provide the projects with everything that is needed from smart contracts, legal advice and marketing to technical support, in order to ensure they get a true head start. We want the right projects to participate and commit ourselves to lead with presenting ICOs that conform to community regulated and evolving best practices via the blockchain community.
It will offer a possibility to keep up with the speed of the relevant markets and stakeholders in a way that cannot be matched by traditional institutions who via their regulations and oversight share a large part of the intent of ICO HeadStart.
DJ: Please explain what the ‘Mother of all Tokens’ is about.
Habib: The ICO HeadStart ecosystem is powered by Mother of All Tokens (MOAT). MOAT is an ETH-based token that follows the ERC-20 standard and plays a variety of utility roles within our platform and provides risk management. The utility and crypto-based value of MOAT is related to the success of all the projects on our platform. In total, 80 percent of all profits will be used to buy back MOAT from token holders and 20 percent will be used to give newly listed ICO project a head start through funding.
DJ: What’s involved in an ICO screening process?
Habib: In the screening process, the first protocol determines the basic data of the project and the people involved. A first selection is made to assign the best fitting relationship manager for this project. Basic legal aspects are checked to ensure that the project passes the first protocol stage and limits risk where possible. During this stage, ICO HeadStart assigns experienced and reputable law firms.
The second protocol stage assesses the project viability from a financial, operational, strategic, technical and commercial perspective. On every single element, the project is rated 0-100. It is all about a reality check.
Next is the risk assessment stage based on both assessed protocols. Our data model of successful and unsuccessful projects – run by our risk manager – determines whether we will allow a project on the platform. During this stage, it is also determined which agreements must be implemented in the timed token release (fulfilling an improved escrow function and linked to clear-cut milestones) and the “buyback” contracts. Combined with the first and second protocols, it results in the ICO HeadStart Scorecard Analysis.
After these three protocols and achievement of the Seal of Approval, it is up to the community to vote which projects will be selected. Before the actual ICO, the compliance department will check to ensure if it is still compliant.
DJ: How is your platform launch going?
Habib: The launch is going great! On a national and international level, a lot of different media is writing about us. We are engaging more and more with our community and the number of people involved is increasing every day.
We have also created strategic partnerships with Flashboys, Blonde 2.0, VironIT, MassMovement, Publiq and Weborama. These are all quite prestigious companies based in Europe. We have built an operational team of over 14 people and momentarily we have an advisory board consisting of 5 advisors. Among these people are experts from the ‘old’ economy and experts from the ‘new’ blockchain community.
DJ: Have you attracted any big backers?
Habib: We have attracted big names from different areas who believe in us and in our project.
DJ: What is your marketing campaign strategy?
Habib: A combination of data driven marketing and PR. Good communication with our community through social media channels and newsletters.
DJ: Do you have any competitors in this area? If so, how are ensuring that you’ll stand out?
Habib: There are platforms which create awareness for ICOs and there are platforms which do basic rating. None of these platforms have built a unique ecosystem where these two aspects are combined. We believe that ICO HeadStart is the safest ICO fundraising platform out there.