Komodo: Boom and Bust ICO, But Still Ahead of the Pack

Komodo spiked and fell on uneven trading volume. Almost a year after the ICO, the price of the token went through two boom-and-bust cycles, but still trades at around 10 times the post-ICO price.

You are looking around for promising cryptocurrency projects, and Komodo catches your eye. It has climbed as far as spot 35 on CoinMarketCap, even as altcoins took a beating in October 2017. With a lot of overhyped projects on the ICO campaign trail, Komodo seems like one of the more promising bets. But can it survive into the next stage and offer a usable product?

We did a short preview of the Komodo project, signing off plusses and minuses for this rather prominent token.

  1. The Komodo Idea- Not Original, but Good?

A lot of ICO white papers promise the moon and stars, claiming to offer ingenious technological solutions. Komodo is no different. If we could summarize the promises for the project, it would be- "we do what everyone else is doing, with a twist."

Komodo offers to create a platform for building ICOs easily and smoothing out the fund raising process. The project landed at a time when regulators were catching a whiff of the problems related to token events. It is still unknown if any ICOs have been finalized through the Komodo platform. We still don't know if Komodo would compete successfully with the likes of Waves, NEO and of course, Ethereum-based ICOs.

The saving grace is that the market is so young that all ideas have a chance at being selected as one of the leading platforms and technologies. Komodo offers to build its product over the Bitcoin blockchain, using its high hash rate to secure the transactions and smart contracts. But for now, no one knows if Komodo would survive with a split blockchain, and how it would handle the issue of two opposing chains with different hashing power, in case Bitcoin splits in November.

  1. Can the team support itself?

The idea of an ICO is to provide some funds for operational costs and to support the developers' team. Last year, Komodo raised 2639 Bitcoin and held 10 million KMD coins for operational purposes. At current market prices, the funds seem more than sufficient. But Komodo has to pay fees for the usage of the Bitcoin network. And then there is the market instability. Komodo states that KMD needs to be above $0.25 to provide a safety cushion for the project. Currently, even after a drop in the market price, the KMD token stands around $1.76.

Komodo trades on Bittrex, and this may cause volatility, but at least there is a transparent cut-off value at which the project will remain viable.

The silver lining is that Komodo has a rather active GitHub page. Developer fatigue and lack of progress are the bane of overhyped ICOs. So far, Komodo has managed to show the team is working at the task of making a usable product.

  1. Komodo already "killed" one cryptocoin

Currently, the whole Bitcoin Dark developer team has moved to Komodo. Bitcoin Dark has no developers left, states the Komodo website.

The good news is that Komodo is considered a coin, not an ERC-20 token, and is minable. This means that it has an additional level of support from the mining community. While most ICOs rely on an ERC-20 token, Komodo has built a minable coin, based on its experience with Bitcoin Dark. This adds a tier of interest and support, as miners may give a boost to the project and help it to not be forgotten.  

  1. The Komodo Team is Pseudonymous- or, Anonymous.

Sure, the creator of Bitcoin is anonymous, but lately, ICOs usually come with real names and identities. Of course, a friendly personal video from the founder of a company does not guarantee success. And yet a user name, "jl777", however famous on GitHub, is not the best recommendation. Plus, an anonymous team also means no way to do due diligence, check for conflicts of interest and involvement in questionable projects.

The Komodo/SuperNet team participates in meetups and conferences, but working under an alias is not a good way to attract mainstream businesses. So this project remains strictly related to online communities seeking anonymity. All the growth should come from within the community- and that may be limited.

The Komodo/Supernet project claims to aim for the mainstream, but remains somehow closed off to people who are already in the know. Sure, the team participated in the Money 20/20 conference in Copenhagen and is a lively addition to the European blockchain community, but they are just one of many making similar promises.

The good news is that the team keeps up the pace based on GitHub statistics, avoiding the fate of startups that simply run out of steam.

  1. Bittrex: Liquidity, and yet, Volatility

With the recent drop in altcoin prices, Komodo has in fact kept up quite well. Bittrex still supplies more than 98% of the volume, and the KMD token has been overlooked by Korean or Japanese exchanges. The good thing is, exchanges such as Binance hold regular votes for new additions and Komodo has a relatively visible profile.

But for now, KMD is at the mercy of Bittrex.

The Verdict on Komodo

Komodo came at a time that, in hindsight, was the golden months for successful ICOs. While its price was volatile, it remained robust and above the initial trading position.

Komodo stated in its blog that it is ready for business- hosting the ICOs and coins of third parties. But so far, we cannot tell if the regulatory climate would be beneficial for the services of Komodo, or if the projects built on top of its platform would be successful.

The fact, however, remains, that Komodo has survived where other ICOs have floundered. The next year will give more clarity on where the project would go.