A Year Since Cindicator’s Token Sale: Results, Progress, Plans
Exactly a year ago we welcomed 4,075 people to our new, decentralised team. In the crypto world, twelve months feels more like a decade and it was certainly a completely different era.
While 2017 was a time of innovation and new experiments in the market, we had very clear goals for the token sale. First of all, we wanted to create a fair ecosystem for an innovative network organisation with many positive feedback loops and network effects that could improve every element of our company: technology, products, and business development. Additionally, we wanted to decentralise the model that utilises the value generated by Hybrid Intelligence instead of relying on the traditional (and in our case ineffective) B2B sales model.
In this post, we want to reflect on how we have achieved these two key goals and provide a glimpse of the future.
Cindicator in numbers
Before reviewing each track of our development, let’s briefly look at the key figures to put things in perspective. Before the token sale we had already been working on the core technology for two years, so we had solid foundations. As we anticipated, the token sale provided the much-needed fuel to simultaneously grow the community of analysts and the number of traders who use Hybrid Intelligence products. Three key numbers illustrate the progress.
Number of analysts: 10,000 → 116,000+
The token sale attracted a lot of attention and stimulated the organic growth of our collective intelligence platform. It took us nearly two years to get to the first 10,000 users and we managed to increase this by more than ten times in less than a year. A large, decentralised, and engaged community is one of the roots of Cindicator’s Hybrid Intelligence and the token sale was a major milestone for the growth of our platform. The ecosystem now has a strong positive feedback loop: the more analysts join the platform, the more intellectual data they contribute, the more valuable analytical products become, and the whole business strengthens, creating a healthy ecosystem.
Tokens held for accessing analytical products: 0 → 34%
As you know, all our analytical products and predictive analytics are available exclusively through the CND utility token. Just a year after the token sale, 34% of all CND tokens in distribution are held by traders who use it to access Hybrid Intelligence indicators. This makes CND the most widely used utility token in the world, as far as we’re aware. In fact, it’s probably one of the few (if not the only) case that validates the hypothesis that utility tokens can have true value for an ecosystem within the new economy.
Team members: 15 → 68
We have more than quadrupled the team, significantly expanding the scope of available skills. The community has also proven to be an important source of talent.
Progress to date
0. The team
The ambitious vision that our token holders have supported would have been impossible without a skilled and committed team.
Since the token sale, our team has grown from 15 people to over 68 full-time team members living in nine countries around the globe, from the USA and India to Australia and Russia.
The Cindicator team has also expanded in scope. Before September 2017, our team comprised developers and several data scientists and traders. We have now built up full teams with specialists in every relevant field: frontend and backend development, design, data science, analytics, trading, quant, marketing, business development, support and HR.
Creating a positive and productive environment in our offices and in our company, in general, is one of our key objectives. We value the individual input of every team member and go to great lengths to create conditions that enable everybody to unlock their unique talents and abilities. We even have a dedicated Environmental Director — he looks after all the plants in the office, as it’s proven that flowering plants reduce stress and increase productivity.
Despite significant growth, our team is far from complete. We are growing so fast that we are opening positions that don’t really fit into traditional job descriptions.
1. Collective intelligence platform
Before the token sale, we already had a core group of highly engaged analysts who were using our forecasting app. Over the last year, we have organically increased the analyst community by over ten times to 116,000+ registered users.
As a result, the average number of forecasts for each question has also increased by nearly ten times. The total number of data points we generate every month has increased by over 30 times, as we now ask more questions too.
At the moment our internal team of professional analysts is regularly creating questions about 100+ crypto and traditional assets. For analysts on the platform, questions themselves can act as indicators of market developments to which they should pay extra attention. Analysts often learn about assets that are moving, new blockchain projects, important events that can affect the whole market, or other major stories from questions.
Our internal analytical team continues to test new approaches. For example, this summer we added open-ended questions, which introduced a new data type. Using this type of question, we recently sourced insights from our analyst community to create a calendar of major upcoming events that could influence the crypto market. This new type of analytical product was received positively by our community and will be issued regularly in the future.
2. Machine learning
Before the token sale, we had already built the foundation of the Cindicator data science module and implemented several ML models that increase accuracy by processing analysts’ forecasts.
Over the last year, we continued to refine our machine learning pipeline. We now have over 30 active ML models for various types of questions. We’ve recently outlined our current pipeline and research in a dedicated post.
Perhaps the biggest milestone for the ML team was the launch of Cindicator’s first neural network as an ensemble model. The neural network now identifies the most appropriate model, resulting in a proven increase in accuracy as was forecast by earlier backtests. This became possible only after we accumulated enough data, which in turn was the result of a growing analyst community.
3. Analytical products
The key objective of the token sale was to put Hybrid Intelligence analytical products into the hands of a large number of users. Without this happening, it would be impossible to gather the feedback required to turn indicators into genuinely valuable instruments. To test different applications, strategies, and formats we developed three new analytical products over the past year.
Released in December 2017, Cindicator Bot remains the core predictive analytical product based on Hybrid Intelligence. This product has experienced positive dynamics across key metrics:
- Users received 889 indicators in Q2, which is significantly more than in the previous quarter and is more than double the number we sent in Q4 2017;
- Average accuracy has remained consistently above 61%;
- Approximately 34% of all tokens are held to use analytical products.
Launched as the personal market measurement tool for spotting arbitrage opportunities, Cryptometer is an exclusive product for CND holders with at least 1,000,000 tokens. In April, we released an updated Cryptometer 2.2, which introduced a method of looking for triangular arbitrages, i.e. profitable price differences between three assets, even on a single exchange. While there are also several other features, the most important update was the introduction of faster data collection from exchanges, a crucial element of Cindicator’s existing and future products for traders.
Token Sale Review
TSR offers comprehensive reports on the most promising token sales as identified by 115,000+ analysts and AI. Each report includes up to ten indicators to help you plan your investments. TSR has provided the grounds for several important experiments, including the introduction of open-ended questions and closer collaboration between decentralised analysts and Cindicator’s internal team of professional financial analysts. With TSR we also tested a new subscription model paid in CND.
New: Analytical reports
In addition to analytical products distributed via bots, we have tested several new reports that combine the unique data from Cindicator’s collective intelligence platform and the insights of internal professional analysts, traders, and quant researchers. The resulting products have explored different phenomena in the crypto market, offering a unique view that combines qualitative and quantitative research methods.
4. Extracting value from Hybrid Intelligence indicators
The most important metric for Cindicator’s Hybrid Intelligence analytical products is the value they provide. Yet this is intrinsically linked to the people who use these products. In order to better understand how traders use our products, we launched an important initiative: a series of trading contests.
In the first contest, 45 traders were invited to trade exclusively based on Hybrid Intelligence indicators. Everyone was trading on their own account, using their own funds, but could freely discuss strategies in a public communication channel. The participants made 1,170 trades in total. That experiment validated Hybrid Intelligence as a profitable instrument for trading and investing in the crypto market.
We invited the best-performing traders to the second stage, which modelled a new format of micro funds. All participants were randomly allocated to different groups. Every group had a representative from Cindicator’s internal team of traders and received some assets for management. All traders had several incentives for individual performance, group performance, and the overall profit of all participants. Additionally, each group was invited to create an educational artefact that described their trading strategies and insights. Sharing knowledge is a crucial element of our ecosystem that we will continue to actively develop.
The contests provided a tremendous number of ideas for further improvements to existing analytical products as well as risk management, resource allocation and trading infrastructure. The experiments also proved a great tool for recruiting — we’ve since welcomed several new members to the trading team. Seeing someone’s trading performance live is a lot more valuable than any kind of formal credentials. We are now conducting additional contests and will continue to share our findings with you.
The first year as a tokenised organisation was the most important in Cindicator’s three-year history. We are moving according to our plan for the year and are ahead of it in some tracks. By the end of this year, we expect to launch some new activities that were planned for 2019. Sign up to receive our weekly newsletter to stay up to speed with our development.
We are no longer a startup. We are an established fintech company. It’s not only about the number of people on the payroll, nor is it only about the publicity or products launched. It’s about responsibility and trust, the strength of connections with the community, and it’s about the value we provide to our analysts, traders, and other contributors to Hybrid Intelligence. The fact that our founders are now highly sought-after speakers reflects this new role of Cindicator as an industry leader. Over the past year, we have shared our expertise at such leading conferences as Consensus 2018, TOKEN2049, Global Blockchain Forum, TEDx for senior leadership at Fidelity Investments, and many others. Traditional media is also beginning to recognise the value of Hybrid Intelligence and we have shared our insights and data with Reuters, Nasdaq, and other influential organisations. We will continue to cultivate these relationships.
We have created a thriving community around our products and are now co-creating Hybrid Intelligence together as one team. Together with our token holders, we have learned to extract value from indicators at every stage of the market cycle. We have built a reputation in the market by staying open, consistently sharing our insights, and contributing to the new economy.
We are ready for the next chapter — decentralised asset management.
In the years ahead, we’ll move forward in delivering the vision that we outlined in our whitepaper. Our goal is to create a complete infrastructure for a new generation of decentralised financial products that will have access to Hybrid Intelligence.
This will include several key tracks:
- Strengthening the collective intelligence platform to increase the range and quantity of questions;
- Refining the machine learning pipeline to further increase accuracy during every stage of the market cycle;
- Building up a complete professional trading suite;
- Researching investment strategies and risk management systems;
- Developing technology trading infrastructure connected to major exchanges;
- Reinforcing the security of all modules.
Together we are making history. Whether you are an analyst on our platform, a token holder, or an active member of our community, you are already part of the Hybrid Intelligence ecosystem. We are actively shaping the future of asset management, distributed organisations, and decision-making. Thank you for supporting and contributing to Hybrid Intelligence as analysts, traders, and members of our community.