This ICO Startup Didn't Die During Crypto Winter. It Has DAI to Thank

Published on by Coindesk | Published on

Monolith turned a $16.9 million ICO into $25 million-worth of assets by riding the bull market of 2017 then taking out DAI loans.

Ether fans can spend crypto with a Visa debit card because Monolith liquidates designated funds on the back-end, providing the merchant with fiat.

Monolith CEO Mel Gelderman told CoinDesk he wants to promote an "Ethereum lifestyle," starting with the way he runs his London-based token startup.

Since Monolith was funded by an initial coin offering of TKN tokens that raised $16.9 million from retail investors in May 2017, Gelderman said his team turned the ICO proceeds into roughly $25 million worth of assets through prudent trading and collateralized debt positions, using ether as collateral to take loans denominated in dollar-pegged DAI tokens.

While a slew of ICO-funded startups ran out of steam in 2018 when the price of ether crashed, Monolith's strategy provided the startup with plenty of runway.

Lately, Monolith stopped trading and started collateralizing ether for DAI loans instead. And Gelderman is hardly the only entrepreneur taking this road. Treasury management trend.

The initial white paper suggested Monolith, formerly known as TokenPay, would launch services in China and an automatic system for burning TKNs to cash-out a portion of the company's earnings, held in an independent smart contract.

Monolith worked with licensed Visa issuer and banking service provider Contis Financial Services Ltd to launch a working product for European crypto fans in May, a Visa debit card that allows users to indirectly spend DAI, ether, TKN, and several other tokens.

Although merchants aren't accepting DAI or ether directly, Monolith contrived a way to connect the ethereum ecosystem to real purchasing power.

On the backend, Monolith trades those assets and puts the equivalent fiat value on the cards.