Youth-focused messaging app Kik is the latest company raising funding through its own cryptocurrency – or specifically through an ethereum ‘token’ called Kin, which it announced earlier this year.
Kik has just sold $50m of the tokens to institutional investors, with plans to open up a public sale to raise another $75m through an initial coin offering (ICO) in the coming weeks.
Kik is one of the most high-profile established companies (as opposed to new blockchain startups) to go down the ICO route, with plans to develop Kin into an all-purpose cryptocurrency that can be spent within its app, and elsewhere.
“One of the areas of immediate opportunity is the over 100,000 bot developers, who have created over 180,000 bots. Those bots could be anything from entertainment to content creation to games,” Kik’s Tanner Philp told news site Coindesk, which notes that the news will bring the total raised in ICOs so far to more than $1.8bn.
The thought of chatbots and cryptocurrency/tokens working together is certainly interesting: especially for the musicians who’ve been experimenting with bots in recent months, albeit usually on Facebook Messenger rather than Kik.