It’s taken months of development, but smart contracts platform ICON finally looks like they are ready to formally launch their mainnet. However, first off is the small matter of $800 million worth of ICON tokens which are waiting for users to swap their old ICX tokens for.
On Wednesday (June 20), ICON investors began swapping Ethereum-based ICX tokens for coins on a live version of ICON. This Token Swap ensures the exchange and removal of all ICX tokens from the ICON blockchain in what should prove to be a highly complex yet ultimately successful code migration.
ICON’s $800 Million Market Cap
ICON was launched in 2017, and the ambition of its creators was to connect with other independent blockchain communities, based on a protocol called “Loopchain”. Initially, ICON used ICX tokens as currency. Historically, ICX tokens have run on the Ethereum network and blockchain, providing early investors with a form of liquidity but little else.
Last September ICON sold some 50% of its ICX tokens in its ICO, raising 150,000 Ether tokens worth almost $43 million. In January ICON officially launched its own blockchain, with an estimated market cap of $800 million.
The 3 ICON Swap Exchanges Are Binance, Bithumb and Upbit
Now, users must transfer those ICX tokens to ICON via Ethereum, in a process that sounds complex but is necessary for security purposes. Users have until September 25 to make this token swap using the official ICON AEX wallet, and mainnet tokens will be distributed daily. The three crypto exchanges supporting the swap are Binance, Bithumb and Upbit.
ICON are just one of several digital currencies that are currently looking to transfer their tokens from Ethereum to an independent mainnet. This is mainly due to many recent alt-coins being funded during the 2017 ICO boom, and as result their inaugural production releases are approaching.
For example, EOS finally activated its mainnet last week following a year-long ICO that netted them $4 billion, a record for an initial coin offering. However, as has been well publicized, the EOS launch has gone far from smoothly, and its first week as a full cryptocurrency saw EOS hit with h a mainnet freeze, a blockchain shut down, and even suspicion of embezzlement, with multiple company accounts being seized.