Factom blockchain firm going into liquidation
This is one of probably very few cases where the ICO was a better bet than the equity.
Factom is, or was, a blockchain firm focused on using the Bitcoin blockchain to create immutable audit trails via the FCT token.
On 2 April, it said that in the absence of further funding, it will have to enter liquidation.
This came as unpleasant news for Factom's chief investor, the FastForward investment company.
"We are extremely disappointed with this news from Factom," said FastForward director Ed McDermott. "In light of this Dissolution Event under the SAFE (simple agreement for future equity), we are taking swift action to protect our position as best we can in the circumstances albeit the ability to generate any meaningful return is uncertain.
"As we go through the Receivership process and understand more of the events that led to this position, our position as investors in Factom is expressly reserved."
The gist is that FastForward, which owns more than 90% of Factom equity, will set about stripping the company for parts such as intellectual property and office chairs to try to recoup as much of its investment as possible, although it doesn't sound hopeful.
The fun part
The Factom network and token will continue operating as usual without the company, which is good news for the businesses that use it.
Japan's Coincheck exchange, for example, just started using the system the day before the liquidation was announced. In a blog post, Coincheck said it doesn't anticipate any problems as a result of these events.
Meanwhile, the total market cap of the Factom token (US$16.45 million at the time of writing) is several times higher than the equity value of the Factom company.
Even now, FCT's current price of $1.70 a pop is many times higher than its ICO price of $0.12 equivalent, even though it's a solid 98% down from its all-time high of $87.
This is one of probably very few examples where the tokens ended up being a much, much better bet than the equity.
Many warnings around ICOs, exchange tokens and similar have been focused on highlighting the lack of protections associated with holding tokens rather than equity, and the fact that a token may be intrinsically worthless.
Here we see the flip side. The value of equity hinges on a company's ability to generate revenue, but it's possible for a company to create a self-sustaining token ecosystem without generating a sustainable business.
The scoreboard is still pretty lopsided, but this is one point for the ICOs.
Disclosure: The author holds BNB and BTC at the time of writing.
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