A protocol for creating token economies
There are a lot of aspects to this one. Most notably, it was a token sale. I’m very excited to be a part of it.
First, for some background, Simple Token is a new protocol that aims to help businesses create and manage real token economies (meaning the tokens have real value and can be traded). Currently, it takes a lot of engineering, economic, and regulatory know-how to mint tokens and run a healthy token ecosystem. It’s not practical for an existing business to build the ecosystem, but once built, tokens and blockchains can play an important part in a modern business’s viability.
That’s what Jason Goldberg (of fab.com fame) is betting on, and he created the Simple Token company, protocol, and the OpenST Foundation, which controls the token independently of Simple Token the company. And it’s all open source.
In fact, the Simple Token team has done a lot to show that they’re upstanding, compliant, open, and responsible. That’s a lot of why I bought in. As I told my wife, I believe the team will do whatever it takes, no matter what, to ensure their tokens are valuable to the group of people that supported them early. There’s nothing better to bet on than that.
In order to get ST (Simple Token’s currency) going, they raised $186 million through the token sale. I originally saw Jason on This Week in Startups (a different Jason’s podcast), and I was convinced that he was someone who can handle that kind of money and this kind of company. It’s new territory, so predicting a founder’s success is especially tricky, but I feel great about the Simple Token team.
The token sale process
I started by reading the Simple Token website and whitepaper.
Then I joined the Telegram channel (and checked it a lot).
I tweeted some info to get a 10% community bonus on first day purchases, and I got pre-approved to invest on the first day.
I had a snag initially in the KYC process- my passport was expired. I tried unsuccessfully to get one in time for the sale, but Simple Token ended up allowing US residents to get verified with a driver’s license. From what I hear about the challenges of doing this type of thing in the US, I’m grateful that they were open to the US, but I’m especially grateful that they made that accommodation.
I took care about two weeks early to move some currency around and make sure I had plenty of ETH ready to go, and then I woke up at 7 am on the sale day and bought a bunch. By the time the sale was over, I (and everyone else) got a 45% bonus based on hitting pre-set sale milestones and mid-sale surge in the ether value.
All in all, I now have enough tokens that if they trade at $1 per token, I’ll be very happy. If they ever hit $25, I’ll be instantly accredited!
The wild thing is, I’m starting to think that selling ST for US dollars is moving in the wrong direction!
All in all, the best part about this investment is that it was really fun. Jason and the team have been really involved and created a community, and in the process of investing, I learned a lot about tokens, blockchains, protocols, and more.
I’m very excited to see the future of this company and the ST ecosystem. The potential is enormous!