In an interesting development this week Harvard University joins a small group of institutional investors who have jumped into crypto assets. According to a latest report by Bloomberg, Harvard's funding is backing a cryptocurrency company Blockstack that is planning to hold a $50 million digital token offering.
Harvard with two other investors have already picked up roughly $95 million of the company's token on offer. This is estimated to be worth about $11.5 million according to Blockstack Inc's with regulators.
Charlie Saravia, a managing director at Harvard Management Co., is a representative on an advisory committee it formed for the sale of tokens.
This area hasn't seen a rise due to lack of ample regulations to safe guard investments but Yale University has made a similar investment in 2018.
The company has applied to the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission to offer the tokens using the so-called regulation A+ framework. The rule lets smaller companies sell shares with limited disclosure requirements and seek money from less well-off investors even if the securities don’t trade on a major stock exchange. If approved, it’s expected to be the first SEC-qualified token offering of its kind, Blockstack said in a statement.
Getting SEC's approval on anything isn't the easiest thing to do but in order to continue innovating in this market, it's important that crypto companies keeps approaching SEC and doing things is required of them.
According to the filing with regulators, Stack tokens are the crypto tokens in this digital offering and will function as an accounting mechanism and the network was created by computer scientists as the Princeton University. It will allow engineers to build applications to create documents and other uses including blogging.
I'm not sure if we'll see a trend in 2019-2020 of institutional investors investing in private crypto digital token offerings but it seems likely if Blockstack manages all regulatory approvals in order to conduct its business.
Overall I find it very intriguing that Harvard has chosen to go down this route especially given some pessimism in the industry towards cryptocurrencies. However, I am optimistic that more will go on this route.
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