DarcMatter ICO Review
Investments and banking are one of the most profitable industries in the world and if we implement blockchain technology onto it, we will receive a decrease of transaction cost and increase in its speed. That is why these industries are so popular within blockchain-based projects. DarcMatter is one of such projects and they are going to create a platform for alternative investments. One important detail makes this project outstanding of others – using the NEM blockchain technology instead of traditional Ethereum blockchain.
Investors and projects who are looking for investments may find each other on the future DarcMatter service. All transactions will be held by blockchain and will have a high level of transparency and low transactional costs. The problem of transparency called one of the biggest pains of the alternative investment industry in the project whitepaper and to bring transparency, DarcMatter appeared.
DMC is the custom token created to fuel the DarcMatter platform. It is declared as a utility token, but there are no use cases except – access to the DarcMatter services. It looks very strange because if the token has only one purpose like this, it might be replaced by existing currency like ETH or BTC (doesn’t actually matter). In the whitepaper, we didn’t find any other use cases for the DMC token. Let’s check token metrics:
- Total supply: 1 000 000 000 DMC
- ICO Price: 0.2 USD (base price without bonuses)
- Pre-Sale bonus: 28 %
- Tokens for sale: 500 000 000 DMC
- Tokens for team & advisors: 450 000 000 DMC
There are too many tokens for team and advisors and it makes an opportunity for the market manipulation. Those tokens will be locked for 12-24 month (depends on category) but still 45 % of the total supply allocated for advisors and team is too much.
DarcMatter has already conducted their private round and successfully raised $10MM from private investors and funds. Regarding the project’s website, their platform (which is actually an MVP) is currently used by very famous companies to access alternative investments. You may find Merill Lynch and J.P. Morgan amongst them. Here, we also have questions. If it is an MVP, how come that such huge and famous financial companies are using it as a source of potential investments? We have sent inquiries to those companies, but they didn’t reply and we are not sure about the validity of the information.
The team of the project and Advisory board
A team of the project looks very strong and ambitious. The only thing is there are just 5 members mentioned, but on the website, we found information about 20+ employees and 4 different offices. In our opinion, it is better when all the team is transparent and accessible through social networks. Let’s check executives of the DarcMatter project:
- Sang H. Lee – CEO and President of the company. His previous experience includes positions in very famous companies and mostly he was working as a Top Tier manager. His career has started in 2008 and currently, he is involved in 3 businesses at a time: DarcMatter (CEO); KSE (President) and contributor at TheStreet.com His skill set is verifiable and includes all necessary skills to perform his duties as a CEO of the project.
- Natasha Bansgopaul – COO of DarcMatter. She has received a master degree in a Penn State University and her career has started since 2008. She was working for a PepsiCo holding and then came to the ReturnOnChange, where she met Mr Lee. Her skill set consists of marketing and operations skills which are verified by other people, so she looks quite confident in her role in the project.
- Stan Salodky – CTO of DarcMatter. He is a very experienced developer and his background is very strong. He was working for several companies as a tech lead and also he has founded few companies which are currently operational. Skillset has been verified by many people from the software development industry.
Advisory board of the project includes 11 people and 2 companies – one is VC fund another is a marketing agency for ICO projects. Amongst them, you may find such famous in blockchain industry people as Dr Moe Levin or Mr Mark Mai (OKEX founder). Those people were participating in several successful ICOs and should be very useful for the DarcMatter.
RoadMap and a current state of the development
Huge advantage for the DarcMatter project is their Minimum Viable Product – darcmatter.com – which is already operational and even used by J.P. Morgan (as mentioned on the DarcMatter website) It is really working platform but in basic terms, it’s just a marketplace where projects may find investors. Everyone may register on the platform using 2 roles: Investor and Asset Manager.
RoadMap itself is confusing. They started from 2014 and the last milestone is 2018+. We can’t understand what exactly did they mean, but only 2018+ milestone has enough details. It is divided into 4 quarters and each quarter has its own tasks and achievements, but all stages before the 2018+ milestone should be more detailed and now there is a lack of information.
DarcMatter is going to operate in the investment area and it is a very competitive market with a lot of different players in it. There are many centralized players and huge funds alongside with dozens of startups including blockchain-based. DarcMatter is going to provide an easy access for alternative investments and for now, there are no blockchain-based companies working within this field. It gives the DarcMatter a competitive advantage as they are first-movers in the industry.
When we analyzed DarcMatter project we found that they have a lot of promotional materials which make them very attractive, but when we checked we found out that those activities mentioned were performed at less important places. For example, DarcMatter mentioned that they were chosen as Top-15 startups at TechCrunch in 2016 (Beijing) but there were no links to the actual contest results – all we found was an only regional conference in Hong Kong where DarcMatter became one of the Top-3 companies. Their partners also gained a lot of questions and no answers received (for now).
Our interest level to the project is Neutral and we are not going to include DMC to our portfolio of ICO projects.