The BAT crowd-sale begun on May 31st, 2017, at approximately 8 am PDT / 3 pm GMT / 11 pm CT-China which was initially proposed till Jun 30, 2017 or early if cap is reached, actually ended in just 24 seconds. It happens to be the fastest ICO in history of digital currency, in just 24 seconds BAT raised a capital of $36 million. The ICO started funding at block 3798640 and accepted its last deposit at 3798642. It literally ended in 3 blocks.
Basic Attention Token (BAT) ICO was one of the most discussed, most awaited ICO in past couple of months and now is the most controversial too. BAT raised their capital just a week ahead of the ICO in an announcement made on May 22, 2017. According to the post,
“Since announcing the BAT crowdsale, we have received tremendous support and interest. Both public and private communications have expressed genuine concern that the entire investment amount may be taken up quickly by large investors, leaving insufficient opportunity for smaller investors. We discussed this internally. Our conclusion was that by raising the cap and increasing the number of tokens, we could offer a better chance for smaller investors to participate.”
Yet, the ICO could engage only about 190 participants in total. Almost 50 % of the tokens were purchased by 4 addresses and one of the participants holds more than 24%. This was the most astonishing figures ever received in the history of ICO. The whole concept of crowd-sale is to decentralized power, give more opportunity to small investors to participate in the sale and invest in the project, they believe in, but the statistics here shows it otherwise for this project.
Many small investors were excited to invest because they believed in the concept of this project. A few might have seen this as an opportunity to get better returns on their investment. After this electrifying crowd sale performance of BAT, most of the small investors are very disappointed. Because of rich investors who paid thousands of dollars in transaction fees, the genuine crowd sale investors even couldn’t participate. It was supposed to be a ‘crowd- sale’ but turned out to be a ‘whale-sale’. The average transaction fee of Ethereum is $1, but a $2220 transaction fee was used to cut in line in BAT ICO. This is totally against the spirit of cryptocurrency. The level of disappointment was so high that a few uninstalled the Brave browser, a few demanded to redo the sale and some thought of boycotting the project above all. The Ethereum Community also seems a little anxious about it. Vitalik Buterin, the founder of Ethereum tweeted,
“No moral connotations intended with “cut in line”; it just so happens that capped sales degrade into highly wasteful all-pay auctions.”
However, the group of those few people who were not the ‘big whales’, yet managed to get their transactions through, believes that the allegations on the BAT team behaving unethically or even somehow assisting the whales getting in early are not correct. BAT followed a model laid down by a number of ICOs before them. There was no way that anyone (not even the BAT team) could have predicted that the sale could end in just 3 blocks. Moreover, ICO is not the ultimate factor to determine the success of the project. So, if anyone previously believed in the project and was willing to invest, should continue to have their faith and wait for the next opportunity to be a part of the project.
For this particular ICO, the reaction was mixed, nonetheless crowd-sale has definitely disrupted traditional investment industry. More small investors are getting opportunity to be a part of the digital currency revolution and to grow along with the community.