Why Understanding Token Utility Is Key to Finding Real Value

Why Understanding Token Utility Is Key to Finding Real Value

It feels a little like the heady days of the ICO boom of 2017/18 again with the rise of meme tokens, which have captured crypto investor’s attention following DogeCoin’s 14,000% rise in value in the first six months of 2021. Back in the ICO boom scores of crypto projects backed by little more than whitepapers and a compelling story pulled in newbie investors keen to benefit from the spectacular gains on offer. When the ICO market collapsed, and the lack of any real utility for most of these tokens became clear, as well as leaving people out of pocket it also left a question mark over the long-term value of crypto ventures.

 

With the rise of meme tokens the importance of establishing real utility is even more important in 2021, not just for meme coin projects, but also for the wider crypto and blockchain industry. For the crypto investor, faced with an overload of token listings, how do you find the hidden gem rather than fall for a dud, whether a new meme token or an innovative blockchain project? Billionaire entrepreneur, and head of Alameda Research and the FTX cryptocurrency derivatives exchange, Sam Bankman-Fried stated in a recent Vox article that some information are “clearly legitimate”, some information are “clearly bullshit”, and in-between that, there exists a plethora of information that are “a little bit confusing”. “In this financial environment”, he continued, even a token, stock, or asset with a meme can get “a $20 billion valuation”.

 

Projects like ChainLink, Cardano, BitcoinCash, Polkadot, XRP, EOS, Stellar, and many others have been backed by billions of dollars of market cap with billions of dollars in liquidity.” Luke Stokes, Managing Director for the Foundation for Interwallet Operability, pointed out the challenge in finding utility and thus getting in early on a crypto project. It is arguable in many ways that these projects are “innovative and providing solutions in ways investors (actual investors) believe bitcoin and second layer bitcoin solutions currently cannot.” Will these projects still be current in a decade? Is there a way to spot these projects before they reach the leaderboard?

 

As a shorthand for how to spot a coin with real utility and real value, there are several common characteristics worth paying attention to, Stokes. The first is to look at the team, what is their track record, do they have much experience or is their first venture. In such a new sector as meme coins this may not be easy to assess, but it’s still worth looking out for. Secondly, to review the product or service the crypto startup is looking to solve. In the case of meme coin DogeCola, the team not only took the initiative in launching the first crypto-backed cola drink, but has also followed up with its first GameFi product, MoonAlley. “This is a great example of how meme coins are maturity, as they see the need to demonstrate real utility to users, and not some ‘pump and dump’ token. I think it’s just the start of an exciting phase of development in the crypto space, which harnesses the power of the meme community to real world projects, from consumer products to eco campaigns,” said BigONE chairman Anndy Lian. BigONE exchange was the first central exchange (CEX) to list DogeCola, in large part down to its understanding of the value of utility to its long term prospects, confirms Lian.

 

DogeCola has entered the cryptocurrency gaming industry with the intention to bring cryptocurrency into the current traditional economy of the world. “DogeCola is here to stay”, confirmed the DogeCola team last month. When reviewing token value, it’s also worth reading the fine print too when considering the impact that its perceived utility can have on token price. For example, as the DogeCola’s website states: “Even though DogeCola DeFi/Crypto project is related to the brand, the token and the soft drink are not to be considered the same legal entity. DogeCola Token is made, managed, and maintained by a community of Devs in a decentralized way. DogeCola Trademark will be used from a different company aiming to connect crypto and real worlds. BigONE Exchange will continue to find innovative projects to be part of our ecosystem.”

 

So, when looking for crypto projects worth investing in consider whether the token utility helps solve a real need for the customers, from consumer-facing gaming projects to more business to business propositions. In the rapidly emerging play-to-earn (GameFi) sector, the utility token often has value both as the crypto currency to reward the gaming community and to fund in-game transactions. Consider the rise of Axie Infinity, the hugely popular crypto gaming platform which runs on Ethereum, created by Vietnamese developer Sky Mavis. After generating more than $220 million in revenue in 30 days to the start of August, the play-to-earn game has its own in-game token, SLP, that can be sold on an exchange, with top players earning up to 1,500 SLPs a day. As a further revenue stream the game’s cute digital pets called Axies can be sold as a non-fungible token (NFT).

 

So where else should investors look for the long-term gains of utility, rather than a quick buck? Paddy Osborn, managing director of the London Academy of Trading, says it’s clear that the returns from crypto with utility are far superior to coins with no intrinsic value or function. Osborn pointed out that the true challenge, within this complex and fast-paced industry, is to identify these very “hidden gems” before their price skyrockets. A good starting point is that when looking at token utility, any evaluation must be set in a business context. CEO Mayande Walker, who’s blockchain startup OpenCT first emerged in the ICO boom days of 2017, agrees that explaining the role of token utility within the business is key to persuading investors. “When you look at the technical details of how our OpenCT protocol delivers data transport – it soon becomes clear just how dependent it is on a utility token to drive our VPN-killer product, the Private Crypto Network. But it’s also our experience working with governments and global carriers that goes a long way towards convincing would-be-investors and partners of the OCT token’s long-term value” he added.

 

For rising stars of the GameFi sector, or with fast-moving NFT projects it probably involves doing more in-depth research into the sector, as much as an individual project. Attracting attention is Solana, which despite outage issues since the beginning of August, the price of Solana has risen by more than 100%, making it the tenth largest cryptocurrency by market capitalization.  In the recent Raconteur article Osborn highlights three other coins with real utility, he thinks are worth watching: Polkadot, Internet Computer, and Vechain. Polkadot is building a network with an aim to support a range of different blockchains, enabling them to work together. Internet Computer aims to disrupt the internet space through a decentralised web platform running on a blockchain. Vechain helps companies monitor and analyse their products through each stage of the supply chain in a safe and secure manner. Ultimately, it’s down to the individual investor to do their due diligence before parting with their hard earned cash, whether to back a popular meme coin or invest in a little-known crypto startup’s token.

 

Original Source: https://programminginsider.com/why-understanding-token-utility-is-key-to-finding-real-value/

 

Anndy Lian is an early blockchain adopter and experienced serial entrepreneur who is known for his work in the government sector. He is a best selling book author “Blockchain Revolution 2030”.

Currently, he is appointed as the Chief Digital Advisor at Mongolia Productivity Organization, championing national digitization. Prior to his current appointments, he was the Chairman of BigONE Exchange, a global top 30 ranked crypto spot exchange and was also the Advisory Board Member for Hyundai DAC, the blockchain arm of South Korea’s largest car manufacturer Hyundai Motor Group. Lian played a pivotal role as the Blockchain Advisor for Asian Productivity Organisation (APO), an intergovernmental organization committed to improving productivity in the Asia-Pacific region.

An avid supporter of incubating start-ups, Anndy has also been a private investor for the past eight years. With a growth investment mindset, Anndy strategically demonstrates this in the companies he chooses to be involved with. He believes that what he is doing through blockchain technology currently will revolutionise and redefine traditional businesses. He also believes that the blockchain industry has to be “redecentralised”.

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Hackernoon: Meme Tokens With Real Utility

Hackernoon: Meme Tokens With Real Utility

The cryptocurrency market can be extremely unpredictable due to its volatility rate of change, with new products and services arising from DeFi to NFTs to name but two key growth areas.

Even so, there are innovations that would be laughed off as something that could never happen even in the diverse cryptocurrency space. The unprecedented rise and rise of meme tokens in the cryptocurrency space are one such paradigm-shifting phenomenon. Meme tokens, led by DogeCoin created in 2013 as a joke version of Bitcoin, were dismissed in the cryptocurrency space as worthless tokens that were not worth holding, as they had no real utility.

However, fast forward to 2021, and meme tokens have taken over the virtual currencies space, as evidenced by the presence of the first meme token created, DogeCoin, in the top ten list of cryptocurrencies in terms of market capitalization. And when top crypto analysis company Chainalysis announced recently it would now cover Dogecoin, highlighting that on August 9, 2021, Dogecoin had its fourth-largest 30-day trading volume of all cryptocurrencies, with close to $200 billion in transfers. “Our coverage of the asset is good news for the continued global adoption of digital assets,” it concluded.

This newfound popularity of meme tokens has been heavily influenced by respected figures and celebrities such as Elon Musk, popularly referred to on social media platforms as ‘The DogeFather’ due to his constant tweeting and promoting of DogeCoin since 2019.

Another noteworthy aspect is the influencer culture, which has become a mainstay in the cryptocurrency industry. Various cryptocurrencies are being ‘shilled’ by individuals with a large social media following, and meme tokens appear to be benefiting massively from this recent wave on social media platforms.

Skeptics in the industry see meme tokens as a new “get-rich-quick” scheme with no inherent utility and advise people not to trade meme tokens. This is a widespread misconception exacerbated by the ‘rug pulls’ and ‘pump and dump’ mechanisms used by some meme token creators, which has resulted in many people losing a lot of money. This impression was no doubt exacerbated by Elon Musk’s appearance on the US comedy TV show Saturday Night Live in May when asked “what is dogecoin?”,

Musk replied, “It’s the future of currency. It’s an unstoppable financial vehicle that’s going to take over the world.” And when an SNL comic Michael Che asked, “So, it’s a hustle?”, Musk replied, “Yeah, it’s a hustle,” and laughed. Despite this Elon Musk has contacted Doge developers and is now collaborating with them to improve the platform, reduce its carbon footprint, and optimize it as a payment method. To try to correct the misconception about meme tokens, we must therefore first understand the concept of meme tokens, and then look at meme projects that have real utility and solve real problems.

 

What Exactly Are Meme Tokens?

As the name implies, meme tokens, meme coins, or cryptocurrencies are created around internet memes, an image, video, or text that is usually humorous and quickly shared across social media platforms. Meme coins are frequently regarded as coins with no real utility and are thus considered worthless by many. For example, Dogecoin, the first meme token created, was based on a popular Doge meme viral on social media. Typically, meme tokens have an eye-watering huge circulating supply – often in the quadrillions.

Meme tokens have recently become extremely popular, owing to the ease with which they can be created and the massive influencer culture that surrounds some of these meme projects.

Creators of some meme tokens have capitalized on celebrity social media activities such as tweets and Facebook posts. For example, in May 2021, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg posted a picture of his pet goats on social media. As a result, a meme token called ‘Aqua Goat’ increased in value by 300% in less than a day based on Zuckerberg’s social media post.

 

Are There Meme Tokens With Real Utility?

A few days ago, I sent out a tweet asking crypto enthusiasts who follow me to tell me about meme coins that they believe have real utility. I received some very interesting feedback and took the time to investigate some of the coins mentioned to see if they truly had the utility claimed. I made some very interesting discoveries and found that contrary to popular belief there are meme coins with real utility. I’ve highlighted a few of these tokens below to emphasize the point:

 

Ninja Doge is a charity utility token on the Binance Smart Chain Network, with plans for a mobile game and NFT, all in one nifty ninja package! Like other Doge tokens its designed with a 5% reward to encourage ‘hodling’, and a 5% set aside for liquidity to ensure price stability, as well as a 2% burn to maintain its value. But what’s also built into the token mechanism is 1% for charity for local animal charities. As the team explained in its whitepaper, one of the key reasons for creating this token is the desire to raise funds for local animal charities: “We believe the funds donated to smaller organizations will have a bigger impact on the surrounding communities. $5000 or even $10,000 for a conglomerate animal charity may not do much, however donating to that ‘mom & pop’ local animal charity across your street will make a difference.”

What’s nice about the charity donation mechanism, as well as it is targeted specifically at local animal charities, is that the Ninja Doge community gets to vote on which charity to select at every 3,000 holders’ increment. With the winner being randomly drawn after all entries all received, and confirmation of the donation is shared to their community and social channels. Also, part of the Ninja Doge’s exciting plans for the is a mobile game, created by the same people that designed Fortnite. A portion of the revenue from the game will be used to benefit Ninja Doge holders, the team confirmed. The aim is to have the game ready for distribution to users by the end of August. Finally, there are plans for limited edition NFT’s that will have attributes that benefit the token holders, though no date has been set for their release yet.

 

DogeCola: Dogecola, a meme token that debuted in late July, has as the name suggests its own soft drinks brand, as well as an essential feature known as auto-boost. The DogeCola team’s plan is to have the ‘MoonTaste’ soft drink in the hands of consumers by the festive season in December. It would also be the first cryptocurrency to enter the food sector, expanding the reach of the cryptocurrency market. To help reduce plastic pollution caused by corporations like Coca-Cola, DogeCola will be launching a community-led vote, to decide which eco-charities to donate to, along with partnerships with charities worldwide.

The auto-boost function is another distinguishing feature of DogeCola. This is done to avoid the ‘pump and dump’ type mechanisms common with some meme tokens on the market. To maintain stability, DogeCola uses auto boost to repurchase and burn tokens based on transaction volume. Another noteworthy feature is the high commission on selling DogeCola tokens, which was implemented to discourage selling and encourage holders by utilizing the ‘reflection mechanism’. DogeCola is currently available on the BigONE exchange.

“It’s really exciting to be listing such a creative meme coin, and not just simply as it has real utility as a soft drink beverage, but due to its ‘reflective’ token functionality,” said BigONE Chairman Anndy Lian. “We kicked off with an outreach program to bring in more users, as we want as many people as possible in our global community to enjoy becoming a token buyer with DogeCola!” he added.

 

BabyCake: BabyCake is the first CAKE reflection token launched about 3 weeks ago. The concept is simple, hold their native token and get a reward in CAKE on every transaction. Their auto claiming feature gets you CAKE automatically in your wallet every 60 minutes too. Tokenomics are clear: 7% of every buy/sell is taken and redistributed to all holders in Cake. 3% of every transaction is added to their liquidity pool. An extra 1% fee is applied to all sales and the game-changing function. 5% of every transaction is allocated to marketing.

Their ambition to become mainstream can be seen in some of the recent plans that they have rolled out. In their roadmap, it is also clearly stated that they will be launching their very own BabyCake AR gaming app too. Monk, CEO of BabyCake also told his community that they should be expecting animations, toys, and their own merchandise as well.

 

Closing Thoughts The meme tokens industry is currently worth $38 billion and comprises just under 3% of the total crypto market cap. With the latest crop of meme tokens providing real utility and with the support of social media influencers and their engaged communities, it is not far-fetched to predict that meme tokens will be widely adopted shortly. Meme.com, for example, is a new marketplace where people can compare meme tokens and mint their own “memetic tokens”, whose worth is based on the trends or memes they represent.

Clearly, there is still a lot of work to address the remaining issues in the meme tokens industry, but I believe that as more meme tokens with real utility are created, it will only be a matter of time before these issues are resolved and the meme sector within the crypto industry grows further.

 

 

 

Author: Anndy Lian

Anndy Lian is a business strategist with over 15 years of experience in Asia. Anndy has worked in various industries for local, international, and publicly traded companies. His recent foray into the blockchain scene has seen him manage some of Asia’s most prominent blockchain firms. He believes that blockchain will transform traditional finance. He is currently Chairman of BigOne Exchange and Chief Digital Advisor at the Mongolian Productivity Organisation.

 

 

Source: https://hackernoon.com/anndys-opinion-meme-tokens-with-real-utility

Anndy Lian is an early blockchain adopter and experienced serial entrepreneur who is known for his work in the government sector. He is a best selling book author “Blockchain Revolution 2030”.

Currently, he is appointed as the Chief Digital Advisor at Mongolia Productivity Organization, championing national digitization. Prior to his current appointments, he was the Chairman of BigONE Exchange, a global top 30 ranked crypto spot exchange and was also the Advisory Board Member for Hyundai DAC, the blockchain arm of South Korea’s largest car manufacturer Hyundai Motor Group. Lian played a pivotal role as the Blockchain Advisor for Asian Productivity Organisation (APO), an intergovernmental organization committed to improving productivity in the Asia-Pacific region.

An avid supporter of incubating start-ups, Anndy has also been a private investor for the past eight years. With a growth investment mindset, Anndy strategically demonstrates this in the companies he chooses to be involved with. He believes that what he is doing through blockchain technology currently will revolutionise and redefine traditional businesses. He also believes that the blockchain industry has to be “redecentralised”.

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