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Celsius ICO Review – P2P Lending & Borrowing Platform

Celsius Network aims to build a platform where traditional financial institutions no longer control the flow of credit to people across the globe, and lenders can earn interest regardless of their base currency or their local laws.

This platform will utilize a consensus-based, proof-of-stake approach to allow the community to borrow, lend, and vouch for each other in a self-governed ecosystem.

The core of the project will be the implementation of the Celsius Wallet. This is a crypto wallet designed to allow members to use coins as collateral to get loans in dollars. The goal is to allow anyone in need of cash to borrow from the Celsius platform without having to sell their crypto holdings.

In the future, functionality will be added to allow users to lend their crypto and earn interest on deposited coins. Coins that are lent from member wallets will accrue interest in CEL tokens, allowing members to earn up to 9% annual interest per transaction.

A diagram representing the network functions is shown below:

The Celsius concept and initial team were formed in Q2 2017. In January 2018, the team released the beta version of their mobile wallet and trader app.

Celsius Network has a partnership with MicroMoney.io, a mobile app with a similar business model. The partnership will hope to use the Celsius Network to expand the credit limits of loans issued to over 100,000 existing MicroMoney customers worldwide.

In April 2018, dollar borrowing against crypto collateral will be enabled.

The team plans to launch the Celsius margin-trading platform beta in November 2018.

For 2019, the only plans listed are to scale up the community and expand to decentralized coin markets.

CEL token is a utility token that is rewarded to crypto holders in the Celsius Wallet as interest generated from fees.

These fees will come from institutional traders, and will automatically be converted from fiat to CEL tokens, then distributed to the lenders’ wallets daily. Fees will be assessed when a margin trade is placed, and commission will be taken as long as the trade remains open.

After the tokens are issued in April, CEL holders will be able to apply for and receive dollar loans against their crypto holdings.

In addition, users who accept loans will have the option to pay interest in CEL tokens at a discounted rate.

In theory, as more people use the Celsius network, there will be a higher demand for CEL tokens and the value should increase. 

Celsius was founded in 2017, and since then the team has grown to 30+ members. They operate out of Israel, Serbia, and Germany.

The biographies of key team members are listed below:

Alex Mashinsky, CEO – Alex is one of the inventors of VOIP (Voice Over Internet Protocol), and has 35 patents issued to his name. He is the founder of seven New York City based startups, and has raised over $1 billion and exited over $3 billion. One of Alex’s first companies, Arbinet, IPO’d in 2004 at a market cap of over $750 million.

S. Daniel Leon, Founding President & COO – Daniel is an entrepreneur who worked as a managing partner of Governing Dynamics, CEO of Atlis Labs, CEO of Beyon3D and chairman of Here0. He started his career as Vice President at Gallup.

Nuke Goldstein, CTO – Nuke is a software developer, architect, innovator, and entrepreneur who designed a P2P credit protocol using distributed storage and smart contracts prior to joining Celsius. He was also the founder and CEO of Sevenpop, an interactive music technology provider across Israel.

Keith Baumwald, CMO – Before Celsius, Keith spent the past 3 years consulting for startups primarily focused on the financial, travel, and SAAS sectors. He was named Global Head of R&D for Travelex, where he created a new division within the company to look at emerging technology such as blockchain.

Ronit Dvir Bacalu, CFO – Ronit has 18+ years of experience in growing companies across the technology, communication, real estate, and financial services sectors. Prior to Celsius she served as CFO of Kalyx and Sapir Organization, as well as VP of Finance for DoubleVerify.

Advisors for Celsius include Miko Matsumura, Co-Founder at Evercoin, Moshe Hogeg, Co-Founder & President of Sirin Labs, Chris Dannen, Founder of Iterative Capital, and Ivan Bjelajac, Operating Director at GoDaddy, among others.

Overall, we are neutral about the flipping potential of this ICO but like its long-term potential. Our thoughts on buying the tokens for flipping and investing for the long term are as follows:

For flipping

Neutral. In the current market environment, it is getting a lot harder to reach hard cap with unmet demand. Celsius’ fund raising amount of $50 million makes flipping difficult.

For long-term holding

Good. We like the project’s idea which is backed by an all-star team who had created successful startups in the past.

Cryptocurrency lending projects are easier to gain traction compared to projects in industries where the use of cryptocurrency is not prevalent yet. Celsius Network also makes it easy to become a borrower. With the strong team in place, we believe it has a good chance to succeed.

For more information about the ICO, please visit the following links:

* The information contained in this article is for education purpose only and not financial advice. Do your own research before making any investment decisions.

This article is contributed by Victor Lai with the help of our intern Kieran O’Day.

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