Do you remember the ICO craze in 2017?
Some might say it was one of the most successful years of the industry.
However, while crypto startups raised a record amount of funds in that year, a large portion of these projects were reportedly operated by scammers. Even some genuine projects have failed, while others are still struggling to generate a profit.
Only a few projects have managed to survive until now and provided positive returns for token holders.
In this article, we’ll take a brief look at the crypto market’s biggest bull run while exploring the top projects that survived 2017’s ICO craze.
The Rise and Fall of ICOs
Initial Coin Offerings (ICOs) took 2017’s crypto market by surprise, generating billions of dollars.
ICOs revolutionized crowdfunding. Native tokens offered a new way to attract capital, in the form of Bitcoin and Ethereum, or in hard dollars.
According to ICODATA’s statistics, cryptocurrency projects were able to raise record amounts of funds from investors, collecting a total of $6.2 billion throughout the year.
However, more often than not, purchasing a token during an ICO did not provide holders any rights to influence the future of the project or guarantees that the creators would continue working on the project.
Furthermore, regulatory oversight was lacking.
As a result, numerous crypto projects launched their ICOs primarily to attract funds instead of actually providing value to users and investors.
Statis Group’s study revealed that – while genuine projects collected 70% of token sale contributions – over 80% of all ICOs were operated by scammers.
Deadcoins, a website dedicated to collect fraudulent and dead crypto projects, has listed over 1,000 coins that have since “deceased,” indicating that a significant number of startups failed to deliver on their promises after launching ICOs.
Even some genuine crypto startups who successfully raised funds in 2017 and managed to create a working product failed to generate positive returns for investors – this was not helped by 2018’s bearish market conditions.
Despite falling prices, overall 2018 impacted the cryptocurrency industry positively. In addition to ending the ICO craze, bear market conditions filtered out fraudulent and dysfunctional projects, attracted attention from the regulator, and made investors more critical.
AAX’s Ultimate List of ICO Survivors
Here we discuss some of the best crypto projects that successfully raised funds in 2017, managed to survive, and were able to generate significant returns.
We conducted an analysis of all crypto projects which held their ICOs in 2017 and are currently listed on AAX. Here’s a selection:
ChainLink (LINK): +1,809%
ChainLink – the blockchain platform to bridge the gap between smart contracts and real-world applications – has shown one of the best performances among 2017’s ICOs.
After collecting $32 million from investors, the initial price of LINK tokens climbed from $0.11 to $2.10 in less than three years, representing an all-time Return on Investment (ROI) of 1,809%.
TRON (TRX): +499%
In September 2017, the global entertainment industry-focused decentralized protocol TRON‘s ICO reached its hard cap of $70 million.
Since TRON’s token sale, TRX’s value has increased by nearly five times from approximately $0.002 to $0.011.
Basic Attention Token (BAT): +362%
From the initial price of $0.03, BAT is now trading at $0.139, representing an ROI of 362%.
Next in line is the enterprise-ready blockchain platform QTUM.
After selling 51 million tokens in March 2017, the value of one QTUM token surged from $0.292 to $1.19 since the project’s ICO.
0x (ZRX): +207%
In addition to a decentralized exchange protocol that developers can use to build their own crypto exchange services, 0x also boasts an ROI of 207% since the project’s ICO.
The startup’s ZRX token – which was used to raise $24 million in August 2017 – is currently trading at $0.148, representing a two-fold value-increase from the initial price of $0.048.
While the highly scalable smart contract blockchain platform EOS‘ token sale lasted from June 2017 to June 2018, we decided to include it in this list anyway.
After raising a record-breaking $4 billion in a year-long token sale, the $0.99 initial price of EOS tokens have since increased to $2.19, generating an all-time ROI of 121% for ICO investors.
OmiseGo (OMG): +42%
The last entry in this list is the B2B open finance blockchain project OmiseGo that raised $25 million in June 2017 from ICO investors.
While the other ICO survivors in this selection featured significantly better investor returns, the project’s native OMG tokens are trading at nearly $0.5, representing a moderate (42%) ROI based on the coin’s initial valuation at $0.35.
ICOs: the Crypto Industry’s ‘Necessary Evil’?
Due to a large number of fraudulent and non-functional projects, 2017’s ICO craze has tainted the industry’s reputation.
However, as only the genuine and most valuable projects survived and the crypto winter introduced a higher level of maturity into the space, some may see the ICO boom as a necessary evil that had to happen.
Learn more about the projects listed on AAX here.
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