Earlier this year, popular messaging app Telegram revealed it was plotting a record-setting initial coin offering (ICO). The company is set to raise a whopping $1.2 billion through the sale of its GRAM tokens, and some investors are already flipping the Telegram ICO tokens they bought for millions, although the sale isn’t yet public.
Telegram’s GRAM tokens are set to be a native currency to the Telegram Open Network (TON), which will be integrated into the Telegram platform. Telegram itself is expected to reach 200 million users in the first quarter of this year. These numbers, by themselves, are attracting investors.
The token sale is split into two parts. The first is a private sale to institutional investors, where GRAM tokens can be purchased for $0.3 each. The round is aiming to raise $600 million and will finish at the end of this month. Reportedly, venture capital firms that backed Google and Uber already bought tokens. The public token sale will begin in March, and will bring in another $600 million.
According to Quartz, investors who got in on the private sale are already flipping their GRAM tokens for twice what they paid. These are selling large blocks for millions of dollars, as a tranche of 5.3 million GRAM tokens was going for $0.6 per token. Another, Quartz states, was at $0.57 per token.
This, according to an email Quartz had access to. In it, a broker to a firm explained the sellers were invested in the ICO, but wanted to sell part of their allocations. The email read:
“The [sellers] are oversubscribed and will allocate this on a first-come, first-served, basis as most wires have already been coming in. We need to get the buyer on the phone with the seller today. The seller will only speak to the actual buyer. A deposit must be wired or proof of wire as soon as possible.”
Telegram ICO tokens undesirable for crypto investors
While big-name venture capital firms are seemingly going nuts for Telegram ICO tokens, old-school crypto investors may not want them at all. Several well-known investors reportedly revealed they aren’t investing because of the project’s incredible ambition and the token’s price.
Civic CEO and Gyft co-founder Vinny Lingham stated that it was raising too much money for a small team, of only 15 individuals. He added that the project’s deadlines are seemingly too tight as well.
As Quartz points out, not a single line of the Telegram Open Network has yet been written. As such, doubling the token’s price may not be prudent at this point. The project aims to offer micropayments within Telegram, distributed file sharing, and more. The TON wallet is set to become the world’s “most adopted” crypto wallet, according to the company.
As recently reported by Core Media, hackers used a zero-day exploit in Telegram to infect users with cryptocurrency mining malware.