ICO Alert does not endorse or recommend participating in any initial coin offerings. ICO Alert receives a promotional fee for the production of this ICO Alert Report. Please click here for additional important information.
ICO Alert Quick Facts
- Decentralized advertising ecosystem connecting advertisers and publishers with unique Proof-of-Concept technology.
- MADTokens will be able to be mined; more info in Q1 2018.
- ICO begins 11/30/17; tokens are $0.25.
- 110,000,000 / 220,000,000 available across pre-ICO and ICO.
- Users will be able to mine MADTokens in the near future.
What is Mad Network?
The MAD Network is a decentralized ecosystem designed to minimize the role of intermediaries in the ad tech supply chain and return lost value to advertisers and publishers. The main thesis is that ad tech today is unsustainable — the system is designed in favor of the middlemen who extract rent from services that should be commoditized. By creating an open blockchain network that can directly connect advertisers and publishers, entrenched service providers can no longer play gatekeeper. The MAD Network is aiming for cost savings, transparency, and more control over first party data.
MadHive is a startup building blockchain solutions for the ad tech industry. MadHive is an industry leader in terms of the OTT segment. They’re an existing business with existing customers, and are even cash flow positive. MadHive will spearhead the initial design and development of the MAD Network.
— The Mad Network Team
Q&A with the Mad Network Team
ICO Alert: How does the MADtoken function within the platform and why is it needed?
Mad Network: The MADtoken is a utility token that serves as the exclusive way for advertisers to access the MAD Network. Specifically, advertisers and brokers stake MADtoken to create an insertion order, which are smart contracts that specify the parameters for each ad request.
ICO Alert: What makes MAD Network different than the other advertising projects that have been launched? What advantages does MAD Network hold over other cryptocurrency related marketplace projects?
Mad Network: There have been three major ad tech related projects that have raised money towards building decentralized networks: Basic Attention Token, AdChain, and AdEx. Basic Attention Token is different from MAD Network in that it’s much more consumer facing. It focuses on tokenizing user attention and accurately rewarding them for the value they add to advertisers. MAD Network is much more concerned with creating more direct and transparent connections/transactions between businesses within the ad tech supply chain. AdChain’s platform is a decentralized whitelist designed to combat domain spoofing. Their solution is extremely targeted and focused solely on tokenized reputation. The MAD Network will focus on combating ad fraud after it is able to instill transparency into the way advertisers and publishers exchange money. Lastly, AdEx is building a decentralized ad exchange. While this similar to what we’re building, it is one part of the entire MAD ecosystem. On top of a decentralized exchange, we’re building a decentralized payment rail and data management platform.
ICO Alert: One of the most difficult things to accomplish is achieving a network effect. How does the team plan to achieve a network effect of advertisers, publishers, and ad serving miners?
Mad Network: Our greatest advantage is that we have existing customers that will quickly join our platform. One of our biggest customers happens to be Tegna, the third largest OTT provider in the industry. Building a network effect will be contingent on first onboarding our existing clients and then working towards crafting solutions for their ancillary providers. One interesting aspect of the MAD Network is that it’s not completely decentralized, yet. MADnet Books allows existing legacy systems/players to utilize it as a payment rail. Advertisers can use MADtoken to access the network or go through a broker who will take the currency risk for them. If an advertiser chooses to work with a broker, they’re still paying their fees in USD, so onboarding costs remain lower. Choosing the USD method ensures that advertisers don’t always have to buy MADtoken through crypto exchanges, something that needs a much better UX.
ICO Alert: What’s the difference between MADnet Core, MADnet Data, and MADnet Books? Why are they important for the project’s success?
Mad Network: Each blockchain layer is intended to replace an existing legacy system within the ad tech supply chain. We’re starting with MADnet Books, a decentralized payment rail that allows advertisers and publishers to directly transact. MADnet Books serves as the backbone for the rest of the ecosystem. By conducting all payments on an open blockchain, every party has complete visibility into the billing cycle, compared to today’s opaque system. MADnet Core will facilitate the actual serving and exchange of advertisements. MADnet Core is imperative to the network because it is a proof-of-real-work blockchain that allows ads to be matched in a decentralized manner. MADnet Core is a decentralized data management that allows publishers to securely sell their first party data. This is extremely important as it allows publishers to send encrypted, read-once data to advertisers.
ICO Alert: What kind of MADtoken rewards can miners expect to receive for helping store, process, and match advertising requests with relevant impressions? Can anyone become a miner or are there expensive specifications that will be needed to be a miner?
Mad Network: These details are still be fleshed out, but miners that successfully match ads will be rewarded with MADtoken, the only token within the ecosystem that will have value and an exchange rate. We’re aiming to use either a sha256 or scrypt algorithm so we can encourage existing miners to contribute their efforts into our ecosystem. If we keep switching costs low, we can bootstrap a network effect faster within the mining community.
ICO Alert: What relevant experience does the team have that isn’t necessarily on a resume that will ensure the project is successful?
Mad Network: One of the biggest value ads that our leadership team offers is strong connections within both the ad tech and blockchain communities. When it comes to educating legacy incumbents on the benefits of decentralization, it is much easier to do so when you have strong, existing relationships with those with decision making authority. Tech isn’t always strong enough to persuade parties to switch over to a new platform, especially in ad tech, an industry with high switching costs. Adam and Tom have been evangelizing the ad tech community for some time now, and they’ll be the first ones to get players like Tegna and Premion to integrate blockchain into their stack.
ICO Alert: How far along is the project today and when can contributors expect to use the platform? What does the roadmap look like?
Mad Network: MadHive has been iterating on a blockchain-based DMP/SSP for OTT over the last year and a half. The current solution leverages blockchain for verifying data sources as ads are moved throughout the network. This platform is already in production and actively used, and it’s effectively a centralized version of MADnet Data. We will have centralized versions of all three layers completed by approximately August 2018. Centralized in this case meaning we will still have the ability to assign network permissions and revert transactions. Our goal is to have a completely decentralized MADnet Books layer by November 2018.
ICO Alert: As a non-MAD Network question we like to ask for unique predictions for the ICO and cryptocurrency space in the future. Where do you see both in the next 3–5 years?
Mad Network: The MAD Network team tends to stay on the side of “realism” — what that might mean for this industry is up for interpretation, but we think we’ll see a marriage of today’s existing institutions with blockchain technology. Scaling the technology is really the biggest hurdle for the entire ecosystem. Many of the benefits that decentralization offers, like decreased compliance costs and transparent auditing, can’t take full effect until blockchains can process higher throughputs. We’re confident that the tech will get there, but the MAD Network predicts a slight cooldown in the space and a shift to building out scaling solutions.
There is a pre-ICO registration period that is currently live. In order to participate, contributors must complete the pre-ICO form here. The pre-ICO is reserved for “strategically aligned partners,” and is not necessarily available to the public. There is a KYC/AML process that must be completed, and both Bitcoin and Ether are accepted as forms of contribution.
The ICO begins on November 30, 2017. The price per token is $0.25 and there is a hard cap of $25,000,000. The ICO will be run through CoinCart, an enterprise grade software used for raising capital. As a part of the process, participants will be required to fill out KYC/AML requirements. The access to CoinCart will be found on the MADNetwork website and both Bitcoin and Ether are accepted as forms of contribution. There are no bonuses available during the ICO.
There is an instant conversion that occurs that will determine the ratio of MADTokens per Ether and Bitcoin. This is done to ensure the most fair token price. Investors in China, Singapore and the United States are not allowed to participate in the ICO, however, accredited US investors can email firstname.lastname@example.org in order to participate.
Token Distribution Information
There is a total of 220,000,000 MADTokens being created and distributed across the following categories:
20%: MAD Technologies Foundation
10%: Founding team
8%: Seed round
4%: Ecosystem partners
3%: Sale expenses
2%: Supervisor nodes
Use of Crowdsale Proceeds
The pre-ICO and ICO proceeds will go towards further developing the platform, specifically, in the allocation that is as follows:
15%: Business development
5%: Token launch expenses
Adam Helfgott, Project Lead
Adam is a CTO and serial tech entrepreneur. As the co-founder and CEO of MadHive, Adam conceptualizes and builds OTT ad tech with a blockchain architecture. Adam has worked directly on multiple blockchain projects and has held strategic advisory positions within several leading blockchain and media companies, including Gem and IMG/WME.
Tom Bollich, Lead Architect
Tom is an entrepreneur in the technology space, particularly in “gamification of economies.” Before advising various Fortune 500 companies on “gamification,” he was a founding team member and founding Studio CTO at Zynga. Tom has been at the forefront of many disruptive trends we now see as commonplace, including gamification, online casinos, real-time labor, and even Cannabis.
Konstantin Richter, Token Strategist
A serial entrepreneur in the SaaS media space, Konstantin is an advisor to leading blockchain companies like Gem, Shocard and Po.et. He is the co-chair of the advertising consortium AdLedger and CEO of Blockdaemon.
Chris Powers, Project Manager
Powers is a vice president at BTC Labs, a venture studio building a suite of decentralized applications for forward-thinking media companies. He previously spent eight years in Shanghai consulting for investment banks and mutual funds on the Chinese capital markets before joining ICOAGE, the world’s largest ICO platform, as director of international markets.