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What is Umbrella Coin?
In all domains, whether it be the healthcare, automobile, or real estate industry, when it comes to insurance, customers have to pay huge out-of-pocket costs after paying high premiums and before actually being able to utilize the benefits the insurance provides. As a result, customers like me often rough out sickness or car scratches to avoid paying these insane costs.
We realized there is a hole in the industry here which needs to be filled to break the monopoly and bring value back to customers. That’s where we step in. We provide a flat-rate, premium-based model for covering all out-of-pocket costs not covered by insurance. We’re doing this using cryptocurrency, and in order to use our policies, customers must hold our tokens.
— Terry Tata, President and CEO of Umbrella Coin
The crowdsale will begin on August 20, 2017 at 12:00 UTC and will end in 30 days from the start.
The Umbrella Coin token (UMC) is an ERC-20 token. Only Ether is accepted for the crowdsale. Tokens must be sent to the crowdsale address. This address will be available at the start of the crowdsale.
For every one Ether contributed, 600 UMC will be received. There is a 100% bonus for the first 5,000 Ether contributed. There is a maximum contribution limit of 3,000 Ether per contributor and a minimum contribution amount of 0.1 Ether.
The target goal of the crowdsale is 100,000 Ether. If this amount is reached, the crowdsale will last an additional seven days (37 total days). There is a hard cap of 222,222 Ether, at which point the crowdsale will end immediately. If the crowdsale does not receive 5,000 Ether, contributors will have the option to receive a refund.
Token Distribution information
Tokens will be distributed through an Ethereum smart contract and will be sent to contributors at the end of the crowdsale.
— 68.8% of tokens will be available during the crowdsale.
— 20% of tokens will be reserved by the Umbrella Coin Trust, locked for 3 months, and then used to create a preliminary float pool (provide liquidity).
— 10% of tokens will be reserved for current and future team members.
— 1.2% of tokens will be used for bounty programs.
Use of Crowdsale Proceeds
The use of the crowdsale proceeds will go towards funding the team’s development of the project as follows:
— 40%: To pay the development team
— 30%: Marketing costs
— 20%: Legal costs
— 10%: Stored in a reserve
Terry Tata, President and CEO
Terry is a veteran of the computer software industry, having worked on projects at multiple Fortune 500 companies. He holds a master’s degree in computer science from the University of Illinois and currently works as a software engineer for Microsoft.
Roshan Parikh, Lead Blockchain Developer
Roshan is a very versatile engineer, leading or contributing to projects related to web service development, mobile application development and Windows application development. He has a strong background in both hardware and software, currently works at Microsoft, and has a degree from Purdue University in electrical and computer engineering.
David Lackey, Software Architect
David also works as a developer for Microsoft and has experience in various areas such as desktop applications, full stack web development and mobile applications. David holds a bachelor’s degree from Princeton University in computer science and engineering.
Elizabeth Sternhell, Senior Software Engineer
Elizabeth has worked on various projects for Windows applications, web frameworks, and mobile applications at Microsoft. She has a bachelor’s degree in computer science from the University of New South Wales in Australia.
Forrest Whitehouse, Chief Software Engineer
Forrest has a diverse background throughout the engineering stack. He has worked on projects ranging from application backends, to complex C++ build systems, to more modern application presentations in XAML. He holds a bachelor’s degree in biology from the University of Florida.
Christopher Fong, Backend Software Engineer
Chris is an engineer with a strong background in operating systems and concurrency. He has worked on various mobile and Windows applications during his time as a software engineer at Microsoft. He holds a bachelor’s degree in computer science from the University of New South Wales.
Son Nguyen, Chief of Marketing and Sales
Son studied electrical and computer engineering at Polytechnic University of Pomona, CA. He has over 16 years of leadership, business, and marketing experience, having founded and run a marketing agency.
David Arnold, Marketing & Sales
David has worked in various sales capacities in the Boston and Silicon Valley area, most recently for ANSYS, Inc. He has experience in the semi-conductor, microelectronic, and simulation software industries. He has worked with clients such as Google and has a bachelor’s degree in management engineering from Worcester Polytechnic Institute.
Alexander Vargas, Marketing and Sales
Alex has more than 10 years of experience in marketing and sales in the New York area. He has championed multiple projects in the telecommunications and internet space.
ICO Alert: The insurance industry is one that many see the potential for blockchain technology to benefit. How do you plan to market and explain the project to those not familiar with cryptocurrency, or is the goal to insure those who have some understanding of cryptocurrency currently?
Terry Tata, CEO & President of Umbrella Coin: The initial goal is definitely to insure the crypto enthusiasts because customers need UMC tokens to purchase policies, as well as be reimbursed in. This can happen only in the crowdsale or over-the-counter exchanges. We don’t expect the customers to need to understand how smart contracts work, they’d just need to vote and it will feel like using an app.
ICO Alert: A lot of the team members are currently working at Microsoft. Will they remain employed by Microsoft, or split their time between both companies? Does Microsoft have any stake in Umbrella Coin?
Umbrella Coin: Microsoft or any other company has no stake in Umbrella Coin. Our employment contract doesn’t oppose working in projects which aren’t conflicting in interest, so as long as the project doesn’t use any company resources we’re fine. With that being said, if the project gets big and requires 100% of our attention due to scale, some of us would be willing to jump ship in favor of Umbrella Coin.
ICO Alert: The technology being built in Umbrella Coin could theoretically be built and used by the current insurance industry’s major players. Have you thought about licensing the software or platform to those major players, or partnering with them in anyway? Or do the business models inherently clash, making Umbrella coin strictly a competitor to the current major players?
Umbrella Coin: We don’t doubt that one day mainstream insurance companies may replicate what we’re doing using smart contracts. However, as of now, no one is even exploring the out-of-pocket costs because the oligopoly is comfortable with it. Once we enter the space, it might force them to lower these costs, which would be a big win for the customers. From there, we can branch out to partnerships with these firms or licensing our expertise as smart contracts bring down the costs by cutting out middlemen.
ICO Alert: How does the claim process and the Umbrella Coin token work for those who are insured under Umbrella Coin? Is it cheaper, faster and easier than the traditional insurance claim process?
Umbrella Coin: Yes, the claim process is much, much faster and cheaper. We set a 24-hour timeline and ask a random sample of policyholders (to approve or disapprove) every given claim. Based on the results of that, the claim gets approved or rejected. However, it’s worth noting that, at this stage, we are not insurance and are complementing existing insurance rather than competing with them. We exist to cover claims in an area which no one is looking at right now, and with no middlemen, our costs are much lower.
ICO Alert: How will Umbrella Coin ensure there are always enough funds to cover the largest of claims?
Umbrella Coin: Excellent question. One of our main goals has been to design the system in such a way to ensure we remain solvent at all times. One of the ways we do this is by capping the maximum amount any single policyholder can buy, and also for every policy there is a maximum of 5x eligibility for compensation. At any time, no single policyholder can buy a policy worth more than 1% of the net amount in the float. We’ve detailed a lot on measures to keep ourselves solvent in the whitepaper.(2)
ICO Alert: Are there legal/regulatory standards that Umbrella Coin must meet, or is the platform not operating under the watchful eye of regulation and government? Will patient privacy laws be upheld by Umbrella Coin, or do they not enter into the insurance process on the Umbrella Coin platform?
Umbrella Coin: Customer privacy is of utmost importance to us, and we are ensuring this by ensuring voters don’t know the identity of the policyholder who made the claim. Through this measure, the process is completely anonymous. Our servers won’t be storing anyone’s identity either, just their UMC address, so we will be compliant with HIPAA. Government agencies have yet to define precise guidelines on companies using smart contracts and once that happens, we will comply with any requirements.
The only existing guidelines as of now are by the SEC, and we’re complying with them. As we have stated on our website, we’re asking US and Hong Kong investors not to invest in the crowdsale. Apart from that, we don’t offer any promises of growth on investment and purely treat these tokens for the purpose of claims, so we aren’t securities.
ICO Alert: Many regions have hospitals and doctors’ offices only accept a certain type of insurance, or insurance is “free” for that country’s citizens. How viable is Umbrella Coin in these areas, or is there a specific audience that Umbrella Coin is targeting? Does this issue apply to Umbrella Coin?
Umbrella Coin: For countries where there is socialized healthcare, we probably won’t be needed for medicine. However, most countries have auto insurance mandates and they have similar deductibles, etc. We’re a diverse team from around the world, so each of us have offered our perspectives on opportunities around the globe.
Initially, we aren’t working with hospitals and offices, as it’s a peer-to-peer system where we compensate policyholders for any out-of-pocket costs they have. We’d reiterate we are not insurance and don’t intend to be in our initial stages.
ICO Alert: Insurance fraud is one of the largest burdens to the current insurance industry. How will Umbrella Coin combat this problem?
Umbrella Coin: This goes hand-in-hand with our attempts to keep the float solvent. The voting system is anonymized to prevent rigging, we have incentives for agents to vote consistently with the final tally, and we have measures to make sure if any claims are found to be fraudulent, we can cancel the associated policy. We’d need documentation for every claim showing out of pocket expenditure and proof of not being compensated by insurance. We’ve written this out in much more detail in our whitepaper.(2)
ICO Alert: How far along is Umbrella Coin into the development of the platform? Once developed, are there specific goals for the number of people insured through the platform?
Umbrella Coin: We are constantly developing more of our platform and push weekly updates to our Medium page. We have our staging app ready for anyone who would like to try it. You can make the claim and see your claims, so the UI is ready. We are pushing a lot of code to our Github for individual smart contracts such as claims, contributions, etc. as well. We’re trying to make sure our crowdsale contract is up to the mark, as we’re getting close to it. We’ll focus more on blockchain integration after that.
After going live, we haven’t set goals for number of people insured just yet.
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(1) Umbrella Coin Website, Umbrella Coin, (2017)
(2) Umbrella Coin Whitepaper, Umbrella Coin, (2017)