Digix, a gold-tracking asset on the Ethereum blockchain, which structured the company as a Decentralized Autonomous Organization (DAO) has reached its crowdsale goal of $5.5 million in under 12 hours, kicking off the race towards DAO Initial Coin Offerings (ICOs) in the future.
The record interest in the Digix crowdsale will be closely watched by Ethereum enthusiasts, since it’s the first major DAO to crowdsale on the platform, and augurs well for the creation of similar economic entities without the legal structure of a corporation. Slock.it, a lock that opens via an Ethereum contract, combining the internet of things and Ethereum, is another highly anticipated DAO that is expected to crowdsale in the near future.
Digix is building a platform for trading gold-backed tokens on the Ethereum blockchain. The company is based in Singapore, and will store physical gold for each token issued on Ethereum. There are fees charged for storage at 0.39% per annum, similar to Gold ETFs. However, the big advantage of Digix tokens over gold ETFs will be its global nature and ability to divide the shares in order to facilitate micro-transactions.
The company sees parallels to e-gold, which at its peak was processing over $2 billion in transactions per year in 2006 but was later shut down due to allegations of illegal activity. Digix hopes to bring the same system with the creation of digital gold tokens with a much more transparent system, with each token being backed by gold kept in its vaults. The Digix tokens will also be redeemable for gold bars.
First Successful DAO Crowdsale
Digix put a cap of $5.5 million on its crowdsale, with a minimum target of $500,000. The crowdsale, that started at 8pm EST yesterday, was finished earlier today after it reached its goal. Other DAOs, such as Slock.it, will not have such a cap on its crowdsale limit, but will incentivize early investments via a schedule that rewards early investors (up to 2 weeks) with additional DAO tokens.
The DAO crowdsale is different from other cryptocurrency ICOs in that the money doesn’t leave the DAO (yet) and will sit in an Ethereum contract. The Ether will be spent only when a majority of the DAO holders agree to its use in order to improve the economic situation of the DAO. The legal companies behind the DAO, Digix in this case, will be paid a certain amount by the DAO in order to keep the gold in its vaults, provide proof of reserves, etc.