A new blockchain venture, ChronoBank.io, is launching an initial coin offering (ICO) to fund marketing and development for a platform aimed at disrupting the short-term recruitment sector. The initiative combines time-based cryptocurrency payments with the gig economy to offer employers and freelancers easy access to each other.
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The basis of ChronoBank is Labour Hour (LH) tokens, which will be created on a range of blockchains, including Ethereum, Waves and others. These will each represent an hour of labour and will be redeemable with participating organisations.
The developers explain that because labour hire costs tend to rise above inflation, LH will be an excellent store of value and will likely be adopted by cryptocurrency traders as well as for their primary purpose, to purchase labour. LH coins will be created for each country, since different countries have a different cost of living and average wages.
Australian labour-hire company Edway is signed up to use ChronoBank’s services, and ChronoBank says several other large labour-hire companies have also expressed interest.
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ChronoBank is an evolution of timebanking, an idea that allows participants to swap an hour of work for a time credit, which can then be used to buy labour or other facilities from participating businesses.
One of the best-known early attempts at timebanking systems is Ithaca HOURS, founded by Paul Glover, who is also a consultant for the ChronoBank project. But, he says, there is a fundamental difference now to when he launched HOURS 25 years ago. “Ithaca HOURS began before the world-wide web and email. As more commerce moves online, cash is eclipsed by electrons. So I’m looking forward to hybridizing paper, coin and e-trade.”
New technology allows a more sophisticated design to trading labour than timebanking’s one-size-fits-all approach. “LH will trade on our LaborX exchange, allowing individuals and organisations to buy and sell their labour time. However, using a decentralised reputation system we can make sure that workers are rewarded in line with their expertise, training and talent, as well as with the cost of living in their country,” comments Sergei Sergienko, who is both co-founder of Edway and CEO of ChronoBank.
ChronoBank’s ICO will distribute TIME tokens to investors on the Ethereum blockchain. TIME holders will be rewarded with transaction fees every time LH tokens are created on their various blockchains, or traded on LaborX. It will start tomorrow, 15 December, and will end on 15 February 2017.