9 Initial Coin Offerings Launched In Africa

Written by Peter Pedroncelli

 

With the popularity of cryptocurrencies increasing and adoption in Africa on the rise, a handful of local initial coin offerings (ICO) have been launched in Africa.

Globally, the ICO trend has seen many companies attract investment. In 2017, more than 230 companies raised over $3.7 billion by creating and selling their own tokens, or digital currencies, with the likes of Bancor and Tezos raising as much as $200 million.

The success of those initial coin offerings has been the catalyst to a number of African attempts, both successful and otherwise, with South Africa, Nigeria, Kenya and Zimbabwe leading the ICO charge.

Here are 9 initial coin offerings that have been launched in Africa.

SureRemit

Nigerian remittances firm SureRemit launched its initial coin offering in 2017, raising $7 million from a host of investors in over 60 countries. The funding was dedicated to developing and implementing the company’s digital voucher system that makes payments easier and cheaper. That amount meant that the remittances firm succeeded in raising the largest African ICO in 2017, according to DisruptAfrica. That amount was surpassed this year by another of the companies on this list.

ProsperiProp

South African property investment platform ProsperiProp is one of the success stories on this list of initial coin offerings. Despite the fact that it did not reach its intended ICO target in 2017, it managed to raise an impressive $200,000. The amount raised from investors will be used to develop software that will help financial institutions to offer blockchain technology-based property investment products.

eKasi Bucks

South African blockchain consultancy eKasi Bucks fell short of its ICO target, which was set at an ambitious $3.6 million. The tech firm only managed to raise $36,000 in its efforts to fund a Blockchain-based rewards programme for township residents that buy from affiliated township businesses. eKasi Bucks returned most of that investment to investors in the U.S. to avoid a conflict with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), retaining a fifth of the eventual amount, according to Ventureburn.

Wala

Fintech startup Wala raised $1.2 million from its initial coin offering in 2017. The South African company admitted that it considered their ICO to be a success in spite of falling well short of its $30 million target. The Dala token, as they it is named, is a new financial services utility token built on the Ethereum blockchain.

The Sun Exchange

South African-based blockchain startup, The Sun Exchange, allows anyone in the world to own or lease solar panels used to power African businesses and communities; earning them a solar powered income. With this concept in mind, the company launched an ICO that was run out of Malta, with commitments of $1.3 million received in a private presale of SunEx tokens during March and April, according to Businesslive. They are currently available for purchase through a public token sale event which runs until 31 Dec. 2018. By the middle of October, the startup raised just over $2.7 million of their $5.4 million target, Ventureburn reported.

Initial coin offerings are gaining popularity in Africa. Photo - AP - Rick Bowmer
Initial coin offerings are gaining popularity in Africa. Photo – AP – Rick Bowmer

Golix

Golix, a Zimbabwean cryptocurrency exchange that makes it possible for users in Zimbabwe, Uganda, Kenya, South Africa, Cameroon, Tanzania, Nigeria and Rwanda to invest in a variety of digital currencies, launched its own ICO this year. Golix privately sold $2 million worth of its token GLX, and publicly sold around $8 million to finance the setting up of cryptocurrency infrastructure across the African continent, according to BitcoinAfrica. Despite falling short of its $32 million target, it was hailed as a success, becoming the largest amount raised by an African ICO.

Wealth Migrate

South African Real estate investment marketplace Wealth Migrate launched an ICO earlier this year. The utility token, known as the WealthE Coin, is part of the company’s real estate project that aims to democratize access to quality real estate assets for the underserved and unbanked populations at subsidized prices. The ICO is still ongoing, with 11 percent of the $30 million target reached thus far, according to the company.

ImpalaPay

Based in Nairobi, ImpalaPay is a fintech company focused on digital payments in emerging markets. The company is in the middle of an initial coin offering which began in August, with ImpalaCoin aiming to be the cryptocurrency behind a crypto financial network improving financial inclusion and cross-border trade in Africa.

NuruCoin

Based in Nairobi, Kenyan blockchain company NuruCoin launched an initial coin offering to further its aims of enabling and increasing intra-African trade. Countries on the continent do not trade with each other at near the same volumes as Africa trades with Europe. While NuruCoin aimed to raise $100 million with its initial coin offering which ended in March, it has not released details of the ICOs success or failure.

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