Ethfinex, the sister exchange of Bitfinex and built by its parent company iFinex Inc., will shortly begin to offer participation in token sales/initial coin offerings (ICOs) streamlined directly through its platform. Details of the first sale will be announced in the coming days, according to an official blog post.
There are many additional features being added to the core Ethfinex functionality, to support the new token sale features.
For one, the platform will employ a “random draw mechanism” - a lottery, in effect - to select which of its users can invest in the sales. Ethfinex says it will release the randomization code in the next month to prove the scheme’s fairness. The token sales will have a minimum of three rounds, and continue until the sale is full.
All users of the platform will enjoy a minimum level of access to the token sales, namely one round per sale. However, holders of the exchange’s proprietary Nectar (NEC) tokens will be afforded additional chances to access each token sale, through access to multiple rounds of the lottery.
Know-your-customer (KYC) identification will be required to access all token sales. To this end, users must register with BlockPass, which has in effect partnered with Ethfinex. The KYC requirement stands somewhat askance with the direction set by the recently launched Ethfinex Trustless version of the exchange, which allows identity-less trading via Metamask or a hardware wallet; but in the case of token sales this is largely unavoidable.
Some of the token sales will be available exclusively through the platform. The exchange states that it uses “strict criteria for project selection,” including but not limited to the presence of fair token sales. They also claim that some sales will be offered at “favorable terms” to its users. There is no further elaboration on the details of these criteria.
Finally, Ethfinex also announced the first activations of its Superuser program, which affords NEC token holders fee discounts and voting rights in addition to the above-mentioned token sale access. The blog states that there will be five levels of Superuser, ranks in effect, determined by the amount of NEC a user holds. Ethfinex offered no further details on the new program, however.
Ethfinex is itself a “spinoff” of Bitfinex, using the Bitfinex trading engine and sharing user accounts. It is a decentralized exchange (DEX), and it deals only in Ethereum ERC-20 tokens and assets.
Ethfinex’s new ICO portal comes during a period of waning interest in ICOs, according to news outlets like the Financial Times, who reported that token sale funding dropped precipitously during 2018: from $2.5 billion in February to a mere $181 million in September.