eSports betting platform Unikrn has raised $15 million in a pre-sale participated by some big name investors, including Mark Cuban.
The Seattle-based company launched its initial coin offering (ICO) pre-sale last Friday for its UnikoinGold tokens, which are exclusive for its skill-based betting platform. The digital currency is designed as a decentralized token on the Ethereum platform, which means that it can be bought, sold and traded on digital currency exchanges that deal with Ethereum.
Friday pre-sale was limited to big blockchain groups, which Unikrn founder Rahul Sood said they “felt would work to build commercial opportunities for the UnikoinGold ecosystem,” according to GeekWire. This was followed by a “crowdsale” on Saturday, and Unikrn said it plans to open the token sale region by region gradually.
Also among those who participated in the ICO were Ethereum co-founder Anthony Diiorio, Blockchain Capital and Pantera Capital.
Unikrn, which has partnered with CoinCircle for the ICO, plans to sell $100 million worth of its cryptocurrency tokens and will use the money raised from the ICO to help fund the growth of its business.
Created in 2014, Unikrn offers real money betting on eSports events in the UK and Australian markets. A year later, the start-up raised $10 million in venture funding from investors including Cuban, Ashton Kutcher, Binary Capital and Indicator Ventures, among others.
Although it was announced months ahead, Unikrn’s ICO comes amid increased scrutiny from regulators who are concerned with possible cases of fraudulent fundraising and speculative investment.
UnikoinGold is the offshoot of the virtual coin Unikoin, which Unikrn launched in 2015. The original version of the virtual currency—now called UnikoinSilver—were available only on Unikrn’s platform, but the start-up said UnikoinGold can be purchased or sold on third party exchanges, or even withdrawn from Unikrn altogether. This allows the company to bypass some betting laws, according to the UnikoinGold whitepaper, but it didn’t specify which laws.