ICOs have become a modern way to raise funds for blockchain startups and for some traditional companies to stay relevant.
Three big Silicon Valley venture capital firms, Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, Benchmark, and Sequoia Capital want to invest in Telegram’s upcoming USD $1.2 billion ICO.
Telegram, the encrypted messaging app has gained immense popularity among cryptocurrency traders and it may emerge as the blockbuster ICO of 2018. According to The Financial Times, three big Silicon Valley venture capital firms want to invest in Telegram's upcoming USD $1.2 billion ICO. Reportedly, Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, Benchmark and Sequoia Capital have each told the messaging startup that they want to invest USD $20 million.
ICOs have become a modern way to raise funds for blockchain startups and for some traditional companies to stay relevant. In 2017, ICOs were able to raise around USD $4 billion, while the data-storage startup Filecoin was able to raise the highest amount of USD $257 million.
FT reported that Telegram is seeking USD $600 million in this private fundraising round to build a virtual economy within its mobile app in which big investors are getting a discounted price to the crowdsale of the same size that's planned for March.
Unlike various other ICOs, Dubai-based Telegram has 170 million users sending across billions of messages each day, which eliminates the chances of the speculation and risk associated with many of the similar but unverified business models that intend to launch token sales. However, this doesn't mean that there is no risk involved. TON, which is Telegram's planned blockchain, is a platform where business owners and Telegram's users will exist, cannot be expected before 2019.
This ICO is attracting a range of U.S. investors and the intersection of Silicon Valley's venture capital with ICOs is becoming more persistent as more and more VCs are looking to chase blockchain opportunities. Telegram backers Sequoia and Kleiner Perkins, for instance, are of the dot-com era, when they both backed Google. Moreover, Google Ventures is supporting ripple, a cross-border payments startup.
In 2017, US venture capital invested $84 billion into more than 8,000 deals, as per PitchBook data. Now, in 2018 traditional VC are overlapping ICOs, with venture capitalists such as Raleigh-based early-stage backer Full Tilt Capital targeting USD $25 million for a cryptocurrency fund.
Telegram was founded by Pavel Durov, a Russian entrepreneur who was the founder of Russia's Facebook, aka, VKontakte.
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