When ICOs started raising tens and hundreds of millions of dollars in Bitcoin or Ethereum, most with no viable product to show for, based only on hastily written whitepapers, many people in the cryptocurrency community feared that we are entering a bubble. The idea was that the young entrepreneurs behind most of them will simply not be able to deliver sufficient results at the end to justify the exaggerated initial investment.
Now we see that the huge sums raised in ICOs are not only a problem for investors, but might actually hurt the projects themselves too by creating an incredible amount of loot for developers to fight over instead of focusing on creating the best service possible.
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Founded by husband and wife team Arthur and Kathleen Breitman, Tezos is an independent smart contract platform built as an alternative to Ethereum. It raised about $232 million three months ago and is now worth over $400 million (65,703 BTC + 361,122 ETH).
According to Reuters, the Breitman couple are now locked in a legal battle against the president of a Swiss foundation that they established to handle the raised funds, Johann Gevers. Both sides accuse the other of having conflicts of interest while trying to control the ICO money. The structure of the holding management is under dispute with the Breitmans who are trying to replace Gevers and gain more control over the way the money is run through a new foundation that they wish to create.
Obviously $400 million is worth fighting over for both sides for many years if needed, but what incentives do they have to create a viable, profitable service at the same time? The investors probably should have thought of that before giving them so much money to begin with.