How we approach fundraising

Here Neuron outlines Saturn Network's approach to fundraising, how we are pushing the benefits of being a crypto internet-native business to the limits.

How we approach fundraising

For the last two years Team Saturn has been working on core infrastructure that enables us to realize the Saturn Roadmap.

Saturn Network Roadmap
Saturn Network Roadmap outlines a path to decentralized financial freedom powered by blockchains, smart contracts, DEXs and cryptocurrency.
Saturn Network Roadmap

Even though we were around during the golden bull run of 2017 era, when so many other ICOs were listing tokens on a centralized exchange like yoBit (for a small fee paid for with early investor's money) with the sole intention to pump and dump their token, we've always aimed at becoming a big, internet scale business creating open decentralized protocols over the long term. Case in point - most of those companies are long gone and the founders have exited with 5-10 million dollars and damaged reputation. Saturn Network, however, is still in business, doing better every day, and we envision Saturn Protocol becoming the first internet-native multi billion dollar business, also typically called a unicorn.

The risk may be higher, but instead of sucking value from one pocket to another, we will create value for all humanity and our investors. We are betting on ourselves to make that happen.

Leveraging our team's experience, we've approached developing and fundraising like a typical software startup would. For a unicorn company, this means:

  1. Set clear goals for the next 6-12 months.
  2. Evaluate the risks and raise enough money to reach those goals.
  3. Keep as much value locked in the company's stock, don't cash out - reinvest in growth.
  4. Re-evaluate risks, set new goals and sell more equity in the company to fund development.

Do this until the company becomes profitable and no longer needs external funding. Then the founders get to choose between keeping the company private indefinitely or go public to raise more cash for operations.

Typical software business funding lifecycle

In 2017 we already saw the writing on the wall that this model is on the verge of no longer working. The reason for that is absurdly inflated costs of doing business in a traditional sense. In order to build a unicorn you typically are forced to be headquartered in USA to get access to VC funding and developer talent, which inflates your cost of doing business since day 1. Then your VCs force themselves on the board of directors of your company and push you to burn cash as fast as possible in order to either force you out of business or, if you have something going for you and the money spent resulted in growth, they'll make you sell more equity in the company to them. Not to mention that if the founders choose to go down this path, they end up spending more time doing sales and marketing than actually building the product.

Case in point - $LYFT. At IPO time the founders had only 7% stock left, the rest was sold to investment funds before it reached public markets, where people like you and I could invest in this fast growing company.

We set out to build Saturn differently, and push the benefits of being a crypto internet-native business to the limit.

  1. Decentralized operations. We do not care who you are and where you are. As long as you have access to internet you are able to use Saturn Protocol and contribute to its development.
  2. Decentralized incorporation. Instead of spending money and time on registering a company with the industry we are disrupting (legacy financial infrastructure), we will incorporate as a DAO on Ethereum blockchain. Instead of paying for a bank account, when we can have a free one with Ethereum. Instead of hiring expensive $500/hour lawyers and bankers to facilitate investment rounds,  we will launch a smart contracts for less than $2 a piece. These cost savings enable us to move faster and more frugally, ultimately translating into investor profits.
  3. Build what doesn't exist. We joined the cryptocurrency space very early. Our first product, the decentralized exchange on Ethereum, was in the works before the "DEX" acronym was first coined. We took a risky path, and a lot of the infrastructure for what we do doesn't exist yet, but we will build it. We will build it because we know how to do it, and we believe this risk is worth the reward.
  4. Equal opportunity. We believe that accredited investor rules are a joke that hinders innovation instead of promoting it. How come spending the last dime of your paycheck on lottery cards, or gambling at casinos where it's purely a game of odds and these odds are stacked against you, is legal for everybody. But investment in startups, where your brain and your analysis can give you much better odds of making a profit, is for millionaire accredited investors only, who get to invest early and then dump on retail investors at the top?
  5. Keep your head cold, do not go tribal. A lot of founders still think that the technology they use to build their product and help people in every day lives are like sports teams. The exclusive nature of "Bitcoin Maximalists" or "Ethereum Maximalists" is strictly damaging to the industry, as it focuses the narrative on tech instead of value. Blockchains are tools. Incredibly effective and wonderful tools that come with their own sets of tradeoffs. We will not participate in this internal bickering and we will support as many chains as we can, while being honest about their advantages and drawbacks, and we will realize the Saturn Roadmap on all chains that we support. Some founders think that their products need to be dumbed down in order to reach the market. We think that lies like "100000 tps, Ethereum killer!" are a bad policy, people are way smarter than that, and when the product serves their use case they will figure out the best option themselves. Our goal is to position Saturn Network to win when that inevitably happens.

Where we are in investment lifecycle

Our earlier investment rounds could be considered "pre-seed" and "seed" rounds and had more risk involved. We've only targeted true crypto believers with our advertising, as at that stage of the company's lifecycle a lot of things could have gone wrong and at least our investors would have indirectly realized gains through our code getting open sourced and benefitting the cryptocurrency community. Luckily, we're past that risky stage now.

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Our HODL 2020 investment round can be considered a "Series A". We've passed the "MVP" and "Product Market Fit" milestones. We are working on scaling our technology and reaching as many users as we can, and we are now on a clear path to profitability.

If you believe in transformative nature of cryptocurrencies and want people to use cryptographic tools to reclaim their freedom and have more control over their lives, consider looking at our roadmap and investing in Saturn Network to help us deliver tools for cryptocurrency mass adoption.

Happy HODL!

Be sure to follow Team Saturn on Twitter for our latest announcements and updates.

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