Press Release: London Token Fundraising Manifesto

Monday, 23 October 2017

‘London Token Fundraising Manifesto’ aims to distinguish London as a world leader in cryptocurrency investment

An ethical framework signed by finance & technology industry veterans will set out guidelines to better serve investors in token/coin sales

London 23.10.17 – A new ‘London Token Fundraising Manifesto’ created by Professor Michael Mainelli’s Z/Yen Group is being launched today with the backing of the Long Finance community. The Manifesto is a voluntary code of conduct which has been created in collaboration with finance industry and blockchain technology leaders. It seeks to establish new standards for Initial Coin Offerings (ICO) and Initial Token Offerings (ITO), the fundraising mediums that allow investors to back companies using cryptocurrency.

In recent months, numerous ICOs/ITOs have been attacked by regulatory and financial bodies across the world after a number of illegitimate fundraising rounds defrauded uninformed retail investors. This has resulted in a degree of lost confidence in the new medium and, in some locales, it has meant that ICOs/ITOs have been banned outright.

To address this issue, the London Token Fundraising Manifesto has been modelled on the Chartered Institute of Investment & Securities Code of Conduct which includes eight principles including honesty, integrity, and fairness when dealing with consumers.

The ICO/ITO market has attracted over $2 billion worth of cryptocurrency investment in 2017 and has outperformed a number of established public exchanges, leading many to believe that the ICO/ITO model, and the technology that enables it, holds real potential for the future. This is the reason that industry is seeking to better define ‘best practice’ in the new crypto markets.

Professor Michael Mainelli, lead author of the Manifesto, stated: “Those of us in the Long Finance movement who are excited about the technology equally look to the long-term over the short. Corporate ethical frameworks and professional codes of conduct matter. Over time, ‘meum dictum, meum pactum’, ‘my word is my bond’, prevails. This proto-bubble needs a strong dose of self-regulation and we hope our Manifesto is not-so-token, but leads to real behaviour change.”

Antony Abell, signatory of the London Token Fundraising Manifesto and co-founder of Blockchain applications company TrustMe, commented: “The lack of confidence in Initial Coin Offerings and Initial Token Offerings is of growing concern to finance professionals who are keen to uphold standards in the City. Legitimate companies who have a genuine product offering and wish to access this new, more agile form of fundraising, have suffered at the expense of unscrupulous firms.”

He added: “A high standard of transparency, clarity and integrity are imperative requirements for the ICO/ITO industry to create a sustainable model that facilitates the rapid fundraising for fast-growth technology firms in a globally competitive marketplace. This must sit alongside an implicit agreement with investors to provide the information and necessary process that will create increasing trust in the integrity of ICOs/ITOs.”

Mr Abell went on to state, “The City of London’s financial procedures are looked upon by many across the world as a ‘gold-standard’ to aspire to. This new area is one in which the finance industry can work together with regulators and investors to champion the best elements of ICO/ITO fundraising process, cementing London and the UK as a leading destination for the latest cohort of disruptive start-ups.”


London Token Fundraising Manifesto:


Z/Yen is the City of London’s leading commercial think-do tank promoting societal advance through better finance and technology. Z/Yen helps organisations make better decisions about enhancing reward, controlling risk and increasing certainty. Z/Yen’s clients are in many sectors, most often where technology and finance try to achieve a social purpose. Z/Yen works with clients to discover, solve, and act on opportunities by managing programmes and projects, building systems, and creating collaborative communities. Z/Yen implemented its first mutual distributed ledgers (aka blockchains) in 1995.

Long Finance

When would we know our financial system is working?” is the question underlying the Long Finance community’s goal to improve society’s understanding and use of finance over the long term. In contrast to the short-termism that defines today’s economic views the Long Finance time-frame is roughly 100 years. Long Finance aims to develop methodologies to solve financial system problems, provide evidence-based examples of how new financing methods work, and build communities of interest through research, networking and events.

The Universal TrustMe Engine Limited (‘TrustMe™’) is a London (UK) based blockchain solutions company providing public blockchain applications for industries, businesses and consumers to allow them to securely post, process, share and read blockchain information using proprietary software and algorithms.

Antony Abell (Managing Director / Co-Founder of TrustMe™) is a serial entrepreneur and corporate financier based in London. Having studied economics at university he went on to become an army officer and an Olympic coach (’92 Winter Games) before working in logistics and telecommunications. He is now focused on delivering TrustMe™ into the global market. Antony also works behind the scenes with entrepreneurs delivering other cutting edge technologies and innovations to the global marketplace via his corporate finance firm of Variable Pitch.

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