Business Blockchain author William Mougayar has launched a non-profit initiative with the goal of promoting responsible token-based models and ICOs in Canada.
Called Token Awareness Canada, the initiative is led by Mougayar along with Vanbex Group CEO Kevin Hobb, Outlier Canada’s Amber Scott, Kik founder Ted Livingston, BlockGeeks co-founder Dmitry Buterin, and TokenFunder CEO Alan Wunsche. The group plans to publish best practices for Canadian startups planning a token generation event.
“Some groups are advocating self-regulation for the industry via a proposed set of disclosures. Others are calling for more consultation and dialogue with the regulators,” Mougayar wrote in a blog post. “This initiative is more about education and using what we already have. We cannot wait for the regulators who are typically slow to react, while they continue to study the many alternatives they have.”
Mougayar announced the initiative today at Toronto’s TakeOver Conference, a day after publishing an open letter and a petition urging the Ontario Securities Commission and Canada Securities Administrators to create more clear guidelines around ICOs, which he said is a revenue stream that Canadian startups are missing out on.
He cautioned that Canada could lose out on an opportunity to be a leader in the emerging cryptocurrency space; recently, Kik had to exclude Canadians from its token distribution event due to unclear guidelines from the OSC.
Canadian Securities Administrators issued a memo stating that most ICOs constitute securities and require startups to follow regulations, casting more doubt on startups wanting to cash in on ICOs.
“Excluding Canadian consumers from directly participating in suitable opportunities will raise their actual price of entry, as they will choose other global entry points and acquisitions in secondary markets that are invariably more costly,” Mougayar wrote in the open letter. “And excluding Canadian entrepreneurs will force them to incur higher operational and legal costs as they seek remote jurisdictions.”
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