Initial Coin Offerings (ICOs) have blown up in popularity over the last few years, with over 430 ICOs raising $5.6 billion last year alone. Given that recent studies show the failure rate is a staggering 50 percent, it is important to track any emerging trends that could possibly affect this success rate. One trend that has caught the eyes of developers and investors alike is the rise of Stellar (XLM) as the blockchain of choice for new projects to build on.
Currently, Ethereum is the go-to for ICOs, with over 1200 projects choosing the Ethereum blockchain to date. However, the projects that run on top of Ethereum, which use the ERC-20 standard, have suffered through significant transaction backlogs and pendulum-like swings in fees. As you can imagine, this is not ideal for developers.
When you compare the Ethereum and Stellar protocols, you can understand the appeal of building on the Stellar network. In its current state, Ethereum’s average transaction confirmation time is around 10-15 minutes, whereas Stellar’s is three to five seconds. What’s more, Stellar’s protocol is able to conduct over 3,000 transactions per second compared to Ethereum’s seven per second.
Here are a few other notable features of the Stellar platform:
- Supports multi-signature wallets at the protocol level, making custodianship much easier for developers.
- Built-in distributed exchange that allows for the listing of tokens as they are issued.
- Limited system for smart contracts that are ideal for applications that don’t require the full generality of Turing-complete smart contracts.
Notable Projects Using Stellar
There are a few notable projects that have already made the decision to go with Stellar, including Mobius Network, which has pegged itself as the “Stripe for Blockchain.” This was largely due to their need for an IoT-friendly network that could handle large amounts of transactions and data quickly, with low or no fees. Mobius raised over $39 million in their ICO, and their CEO is on record saying that they “look at Ethereum like AOL or Myspace” — platforms innovative in their own days, but quickly surpassed by next-generation competitors.
Another notable project that chose the Stellar network is Smartlands, a platform for ICOs of low-risk future-proof tokens issued by real economy companies. Smartlands, which was the first Stellar ICO, chose the platform because “all of the assets created on Stellar could be safely, securely and conveniently traded at low cost on the Stellar Distributed Exchange (SDEX), therefore Asset Based Tokens (ABTs) issued on Smartlands will be tradable right after ICO.”
Stellar made headlines when Kik, the popular messaging app, announced that they were planning a switch from using Ethereum to Stellar following their ICO. However, they have since decided to leverage a hybrid of both:
What Stellar will be used for:
“The digital services that million of consumers that are going to be interacting with KIN on a daily basis in their digital lives, earning it and spending it, these small amounts, inside of all of these digital services, that will happen on top of Stellar.”
What Ethereum will be used for:
“They could then always take that and move it over to the Ethereum blockchain put in hardware wallet wallets, put it on exchanges, and vice versa…go out to Ethereum onto the exchanges, buy a bunch of KIN on Ethereum, then move that onto the Stellar blockchain.”
Upcoming Stellar ICOs
Ternio: Blockchain based digital ad technology company providing supply-chain transparency, ad fraud, and instant payments to publishers.
ZED Network: Platform as a service, connecting a network of global money transfer operators.
Irene: Personal renewable energy supplier.
Tontine Trust: Not-for-profit developer of peer-to-peer retirement savings schemes which can issue internationally regulated low cost retirement savings products. Here’s why they chose to build on Stellar.
While it would take a major shift within the crypto community for Stellar to grab a significant market share from Ethereum, this trend is gaining steam as Ethereum continues to struggle with scaling issues.
Follow us: Telegram | Twitter | Newsletter
Disclaimer: The author(s) of this article may have a position in one or more of the securities mentioned above. This article is for informational purposes only and should not be taken as investment advice. Always conduct your own due diligence before making investments.