My crypto senses are tingling...
If you're not familiar with Kik Messenger, it's important to realize the significance of this platform before evaluating the Kin token. Here's some stats:
- Founded in 2009
- Over 300 million registered users (9/16)
- Over 20,000 bots (8/16)
- Active in over 230 countires (12/16)
- 40% of US teens and young adults use Kik (10/15)
- 50% of registered users are active daily (11/14)
Sources: 1, 2
In short, Kik is a BIG deal. It's especially popular by the younger crowd, which has historically been on of the major criticisms of the platform. 3
The Kin token
Kik first introduced "Kik Points" in 2015, and has historically been a leading innovator in the chat application space (first chap app to become a full platform in 2011, and first Western platform to integrate bots in 2014). The Kik points functioned as a digital currency used to buy in-app items and services while still maintaining privacy and the consumer experience. The next logical evolution of this monetization model was to expand this asset beyond the limits of the app, and the recent boom in cryptocurrency development has finally made this a possibility. 4
The Kin token is an Ethereum-based ERC20 token that will be used as Kik's primary transaction currency. Kin will sit at the center of monetized content creation, curation, commerce, products & services, merchants, developers, influencers, and more.
When I first heard about Kin, I immediately thought about the popular app WeChat. Although it's primarily used in China, WeChat had over 889 million users in Q4 2016 along with a slew of other staggering statistics. 5
One of the major reasons why WeChat is so popular is that it is widely used as a payment service for all kinds of things from bills to goods and services from stores. If Kik manages to bring a WeChat-like experience to the Western world, the potential reach could be astronomical.
Solid ICO fundamentals
While this post isn't an ICO review, it is worth noting some of these fundamental aspects:
- Kik is an established company with an existing user base and market for Kin
- Kin solves existing issues within current currency models
- The development team is well-known, and is getting help from established names like Jake Brukhman (CoinFund)
- The development roadmap, token issuance model, and distribution event are planned in a logical way
See the whitepaper for details.
At this point, Kin is looking like a solid project that makes a lot of sense. There's some concern about the amount of Kin being issues during the ICO (only 10%), but I think the majority of this worry is due to people not understanding where the rest of the tokens are going. If the devs were taking the other 90%, yeah, that would be a massive red flag, but that's not at all what is planned.
So what got my attention and motivated me to create this post?
One last kicker - why Kin may explode in value after the ICO
If you go to the registration page for the Kin token distribution event, you will be greeted by the "know your customer" (KYC) page asking for full name, DoB, address, and government ID.
Since Kik is based in Canada, I'm not at all surprised that there are more invasive requirements for participating in the ICO. While I think this is in the best interest for the company, it certainly will prevent some from participating. In fact, I think it could be a pretty big deal...
If people are too concerned about their personal information, they may skip this ICO and leave it to the whales. I anticipate that there will be fewer investors, and the investment amounts will be larger, resulting in some whales owning significant portions of the total supply. If this happens, there will be much less market competition when trying to flip the tokens, and the prices may skyrocket.
Additionally, many people will try to grab Kin as soon as it hits exchanges rather than give out lots of information to get it at ICO price. These people could definitely find themselves profit, if they get them early enough. There's a lot of hype in the market right now since 0x held such a successful ICO, and many people who missed out may FOMO over Kin once it becomes tradable.
Ethereum is looking at a (beneficial) hard fork in late September. Depending on whether the Kin ICO happens before or after this update (and resulting price changes), my strategy could change. It seems like it would be in the interest of Kik to hold the ICO before the update and sell the crypto after the hard fork happens, since there's likely going to be a minor price increase.
However, if the Kin ICO happens after the hard fork, there should be less incentive to hold ETH rather than have it tied up in an ICO until the tokens hit ex changes.
There is still more information about Kin that hasn't been released yet, but will be before the ICO. In my opinion, this is definitely a project worth keeping your eye on.
If you liked this post, hit it with an upvote and consider resteeming it so others can see. If you'd like to support me directly, you can send Ether and ERC20 tokens to Tomshwom.eth.