In Q32017, the Korean conglomerate, Dayli Financial Group, started a blockchain project, ICON, that would be soon coined as the “Korean Ethereum”. Dayli Financial Group also owns Yello Mobile, which is the largest mobile startup in Korea worth $4 billion, Kakao, which is the MOST popular application in Korea (equivalent to WhatsApp or WeChat in China), and The Loop, which is the company behind ICON’s blockchain technology. In essence, ICON has one of the largest Korean Conglomerates backing this project, this is as real as it gets. ICON’s central technology is called LoopChain, which is described as “a high-performance blockchain that can provide real-time transaction.” LoopChain is built for enterprises and provides smart contract functionality that can be customized, but most importantly, can be linked to other distributed ledger networks. Today, ICON trades at $8 a coin, however, since ICON is framing itself to become the master key that unlocks blockchain interoperability and connects requested services to every business and government sector, ICON can be trading at $70 per coin within the next 2 years.
- The ICON project started in 3Q2017 from Seoul, South Korea
- ICON is an interconnecting blockchain network and can connect to independent blockchains without the use of additional third-party intermediaries
- The ICON project offers established industries access to a blockchain solution that allows them to perform data and monetary transfers, verify identity, leverage smart contract environment (SCORE), and utilize a decentralized exchange
- The Loop, the company behind ICON, has already received several rounds of funding
- Ticker: ICON
Ranking by Market Cap (Token): 3
Market Capitalization: $3,063,911,421
Circulating Supply: 380,045,004 ICX
Max Supply: 400,230,000 ICX
Average Trading Volume: $83,249,600
Consensus: Ethereum consensus
- The ICON project is lead by JH Kim, who is also the CEO of The Loop and part of the ICON Foundation Council. Mr. Kim has almost 20 years of experience in the information security field.
- KJ Eee is the CEO Dayli Intelligence and is also on the ICON Foundation Council. Previous to Dayli Intelligence, Mr. Eee developed ‘SUHOSHIN’, the first firewall in Korea
- The ICON team has an additional 15 blockchain managers and engineers
- Rounding out the ICON team are 5 AI developers and product managers, as well as 5 marketing professionals
Drivers of Growth:
- The ICON project is the first blockchain network in Korea that is pushing the country towards widespread blockchain adoption
- The ICON team is setting up dozens of partnerships and side chains with the goal of connecting the entire ecosystem using their protocol
- ICON’s DEX will provide a safer, all-encompassing alternative to traditional exchanges. When ICON’s core wallet is released, users will be able to trade directly from their wallet
- The ICON platform utilizes a Smart Contract On Reliable Environment (SCORE). SCORE is designed to have high-performance contracts run directly in the node environment without the need of a separate virtual machine. This can be easily created for various applications because it runs separately from the underlying blockchain
- ICON platform offers flexibility within their ecosystem, giving other blockchains the ability to connect with the ICON network via their smart contracts
- To reiterate, the ICON platform was created by the parent group, DAYLI financial group, and DFG has a partnership with ripple
- The Loop is a member of the Korean Financial Investment Association that includes 27 financial firms in Korea. Some of these partners include Daishin Securities, which has close to a $1 Billion market cap and Kiwoom, which has a market cap is well over $1.5 Billion. The other partners also manage billions or hundreds of millions of dollars
- ICON signed an agreement with Woori (second largest bank in Korea) to create a Tether equivalent but for the Korean Won
- Dayli Financial Group (DFG) owns Coinone, the second largest crypto exchange in Korea
- DFG has a close partnership with multiple universities including Sogang University, which is currently developing a blockchain vending machine called U-Coin
- DFG has recently formed an insurance consortium with hospitals and insurance companies to help with ICON’s blockchain adoption
- Korea is ideal place for blockchain technology to accelerate because they are one of the largest leaders in cryptocurrency trading volume and supporters
- The ICON blockchain solution is already enterprise tested. Their platform is one of the world’s largest enterprise blockchain networks that includes 25 security firms, 6 hospitals, various universities and banks
- Since regulation will always trail innovation, the digital currency space can be subject to new regulations in the future
The one aspect of ICX that sticks out to me the most is the lack of headwinds. Apart from regulations and the general challenges of the blockchain space, ICON does not have any serious competition within enterprise ready blockchain solutions in Korea. Plus, they already have a functioning product that enterprises, both in business and government are utilizing. Once you do the research, it becomes clear very quickly that ICON is backed by one of the largest conglomerates in Korea giving the project almost unlimited resources, manpower, and influence to execute their roadmap. This is why I see this coin touching $70 within the next 2 years.
To my dedicated readers, I am excited to announce that I have just launched my advisory service and fund, Masi Digital Ventures.