AssetStream is a licensed blockchain-enabled peer-to-peer platform that provides leeway to over 264 millions of unbanked and otherwise financially underprivileged people around the world. It is based on the concept of tokenized microfinancing that stipulates for the extension of loans and fund transfers to individuals and small-scale entrepreneurs who are deprived of the possibility of obtaining such financial services from the conventional monetary institutions. AssetStream has been built of the Stellar blockchain and uses its consensus protocol, which is known for being one of the most efficient means for the creation of state-of-the-art payment infrastructure characterized by fast transactions, low fees, and seamless synchronization with all major banking systems.
AssetStream is registered as a legal entity in Estonia with its head office located in Tallinn. According to the information on the official website, AssetStream operates under two licenses issued by the country’s financial regulator.
The first license grants the company the right to provide services of exchanging a virtual currency (read, cryptocurrency) against any fiat currency; the second one permits to offer services of a virtual currency wallet. Both licenses are permanent and check against the official database, which adds points to the credibility of AssetStream.
In addition to having a solid legal background, AssetStream has already acquired two strategic partners: Pico Thailand, an association of Thai entrepreneurs, and CreditOk, an aspiring fintech company that works on creating a comprehensive credit risk system.
The essence of the AssetStream system is uncomplicated. There are three types of users: lenders, borrowers, and investors/local agencies.
The lender gets regular payments in the form of 0.75% to 4% interest on the loaned sum, which he can convert to crypto or fiat currencies. He can exploit AssetStream’s matching system to handpick the reliable borrower or opt for the automated selection.
The borrower gets to pick a more suitable interest rate and create a loan contract with flexible terms.
Investors and local agencies can participate in the lending process and get a cut of the interest. In case the borrower defaults on his loan, the platform undertakes the role of a debt collector.
The AssetStream platform features three types of tokens: AST, ASD, and ASTH. AST is the utility token that is distributed among the investors over the course of ICO.
The peculiarity of AST lies in the fact that its price may differ, depending on the area of application. If the token is used strictly within the confines of the platform, it would have a fixed price of $0.01. But should the user choose to transfer it to an outside exchange, the price will be subject to fluctuations.
ASD is the main intra-platform currency used for lending, borrowing, paying rewards and interest. This token is convertible to other cryptocurrencies (BTC, BCH, ETH) as well as AST. Each user would be required to have a certain amount of ASD in order to be able to pay conversion fees.
ASTH is a secondary currency applicable only to the Thai market and is used to pay loan interest. This token can be freely converted to ASD on a no-fee basis.
AssetStream has a pre-sale of AST tokens underway that is going to end on May 31, followed by as much as 8 rounds of token sale, the first of which will start on June 1. The price of 1 AST is set at $0.01, though a 25% pre-sale bonus applies. This bonus will decrease by 4% once the ICO commences. The project aims for the hardcap of $21 million. Citizens of China and the United States won’t be allowed to participate in this ICO.
|Start||June 1, 2019|
|End||July 11, 2019|
|Soft cap||$144 000 000|
|Hard cap||$2 100 000 000|
|Minimum investment||0.01 ETH|
|Tokens for sale||2100000000|
|Accepting||BTC, ETH, BCH, Fiat|
AssetStream is addressing a really burning problem which is getting a loan. My guess is that every single entrepreneur who had dealt with banks know firsthand that the procedure of loan obtainment could be so tedious that you would rather shoot yourself. I am more than convinced that blockchain will become a driving force for small and mid-scale businesses, thanks in no small way to the likes of AssetStream. Too bad that this project is emerging from Asia and has a primary focus on that market. Otherwise, I would have invested a more substantial amount of ETH.
The project itself appears to be legitimate, with an excellent, experienced team, great vision, and a working product. As mentioned, it is not exactly unique, but it might be the first one to achieve major success and go mainstream — that still remains to be seen. Their aim itself is not only noble, but also quite useful for the industry. Naturally, it will make lives of the unbanked and underbanked people much easier, so there is really no downside to it. Even the white paper is well-written, 42 pages long, and it goes into great detail, thus further improving the legitimacy of the project. As always, investors should check out the project themselves before investing, but so far, AssetStream appears to be pretty good, with no red flags in sight.
Giving people an opportunity to receive cheaper microloans without the intermediaries and the absolutely unnecessary hassle is certainly a very noble goal which should be pursued by any means possible, especially through the implementation of the blockchain technology. Kudos to AssetStream for creating a good-looking ecosystem. However, I wouldn’t call this particular project immensely promising, purely from the practical standpoint. There already are tons of microfinancing solutions based on the use of blockchain: Uulala, NEL, Moeda, to name a few just off the top of my head. Frankly speaking, I don’t how AssetStream would be capable of standing out from the crowd of startups that operate in the same field.
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