Fundraising has been around for as long as people have been launching new ventures and the ability to raise funds is one of the most vital leadership traits in any successful start-up CEO. Even the most incredible concepts can quickly fall flat if they do not get support from investors. This dichotomy has led technologists such Tesla CEO Elon Musk to propose that ‘fundraising’ should be taught to young people as a vital life skill.
‘Traditional’ fundraising can be an expensive and time-consuming distraction. Technology investor Tej Kohli bemoaned in a recent interview with The Telegraph that the CEO’s of the deep tech companies that he invested in spent too much of their time distracted by fundraising rounds when they should be focused on growing their company. Traditional fundraising involves legal registrations, consultants, licensing, vicarious liability and many other time consuming issues.
But now that blockchain has arrived at the intersection between technology and finance, the scope for the disruption of this status quo is significant. Blockchain offers a number of attractive attributes because blockchain systems operate as decentralized networks that do not require a central server. The functionality of the blockchain is inherently transparent and operates with a high degree of confidence, because all changes are visible to all parties, and transactions cannot be reversed or re-sequenced.
A number of ‘initial coin offerings’ (ICO’s), whereby start-ups use blockchain to issue their own ‘tokens’ to raise finance, have enabled some technology ventures to raise substantial funding. But as yet this method of fundraising has remained the preserve of a select few fast-growth technology start-ups. Blockchain crowdfunding has yet to be ‘democratised’ into the mainstream and lacks an easily accessible user interface.
One platform that is seeking to make decentralized fundraising through tokenization more accessible is MintMe.com. MintMe is focused on a new concept – personal monetization – and allows content creators to crowdfund their projects by issuing and selling their own branded ‘coins’. A key differentiator of MintMe, is that as well as minting coins for a start-up or venture or project, coins can also be minted for an individual.
For example, a creator of online content, such as a YouTuber, might ‘mint’ coins in themselves for their fans to buy and to trade, thus creating a symbiotic relationship between the content creator and their audience. Both can benefit from the long-term success of the coin as its popularity rises with the YouTubers success. This ‘personal monetization’ is built around mutual support. Like any cryptocurrency, the appreciating (or depreciating) value of the coins that are issued by an individual depend on the demand for them. When an individual or project grows in popularity, demand for their coins rises, and so does their value of those coins when they are traded on the MintMe.com blockchain.
Whilst personal monetisation remains in its infancy, the concept behind MintMe presents us with an enticing notion that individuals could convert themselves and their prospects into a tradable commodity. It is simply a matter of time before commoditising one’s self as coins becomes as normal posting photos in return for followers and likes. And when that adoption happens, the growth in personal monetisation using blockchain will be exponential.