Investments

Europe Leads ICO Investments

Atomico, the European venture capital firm, said in a report on Thursday (Nov. 30) that over the course of the past few years, close to half of the money that went into initial coin offerings (ICOs) has come from European investors.

According to news from Reuters, Atomico said in a new report that European businesses have raised $1.76 billion from initial coin offerings for cryptocurrencies since the start of 2014, accounting for 46 percent of the money raised around the globe. The research is based on data that is compiled by Token Data.

Atomico found that Switzerland got close to half of the European total, with $828 million, or 45 percent, of ICO funds flowing in largely via venture capital firms registered in Zug, which is a low-tax area near Zurich. North America drew $1.08 billion of the ICOs, or 28 percent of the money, raised globally. On a global basis, ICOs drew $3.8 billion in investments.

While U.S. venture capital firms, including Andreessen Horowitz and Union Square Ventures, have been investing in ICOs as has some European funds, such as BlueYard Capital of Berlin, the country’s largest venture capital funds haven’t taken part yet. Atomico thinks that will change next year.

When looking at it from the number of cryptocurrency projects that have been launched, the venture capital firm found that Central and Eastern Europe are in the lead, with 162 projects. Britain and Ireland are tied for second place, with 90 projects.

The interest in ICOs comes as regulators around the globe warn about the risks associated with them. Because they are unregulated, government agencies from the U.S., U.K., Russia and China, among many others, have warned investors could lose all their money investing in ICOs. China and South Korea have taken steps to ban them altogether.

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