LONDON — Startups that raised hundreds of millions of dollars last year issuing their own digital coins are being “intentionally non-transparent” with their investors, according to a new report. Analysis carried out by ICORating for Business Insider found that many projects are operating in an “opaque” manner, with investors left in the dark about how the project is progressing.

Cryptocurrencies exploded in popularity last year thanks to a surge in the price of bitcoin at the end of 2017. It coincided with a boom in so-called initial coin offerings (ICOs), where startups issue their own cryptocurrency in exchange for money to build their business.

435 projects raised $5.6 billion last year, according to TokenData. ICORating, which provides analysis of potential ICO investments for investors, looked at the progress of the top 50 ICOs from the first half of 2017 for BI.

The projects examined raised a combined $887 million and the biggest project, Bancor, raised $153 million. ICORating said in its report: “The projects reviewed have not publicly revealed how they are spending the funds they have raised.

To a certain extent, this is an issue for the whole market, and we are expecting changes in this field.” John Slyusarev, CMO of ICORating, told Business Insider: “The key problem for the post-ICO market currently is a lack of transparency.” Read more from…

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