What is the business model for protocol companies?
Yann Ranchere

Yann — great article! I think that he tokens should not be used as a security for investors because you’re not really creating any value or cash flow. You also don’t know if people will switch to the new infrastructure when a perfectly good infrastructure is already in place.

This ico craze is ludicrous because security researchers (not app developers) with white papers (just ideas), people with existing products lacking traction, and every other scammer are trying to create incentive structures or economic models that do not take into account the nature of decentralization as a business model.

I think that tokens SHOULD be used to commoditize an asset and incentivize user adoption, not find investors for the platform. Each decentralized protocol has a supply and demand for the network. Without any product adoption and a huge supply of value (tokens), there is a lot of promise without engineering or usage. Investors will try to extract rent and the model will implode or deflate to the extreme.

Look at how bitcoin works supply — demand. Miners of the digital asset (supply of power) — Users of the digital asset (demand). Do you see any investors in the middle?

I think the proper way to build an economic system, is to pay early adopters (users) in tokens and network providers in tokens to use the network and build it. Make them the investors in your network.

Lastly, make sure you have an asset that can be commoditized like a mortgage, a car, network storage, or computing power. Also take into account that the token / asset can be resold for a profit in the future and it generates rent from ownership. Whoever owns that token receives the rent.

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