Cryptocurrency trading exchanges are charging as much as ten times the amount traditional exchanges request for securities, according to a paper released by Autonomous Research, a fintech analysis firm.
ICO Listing Exchanges Charging Huge Fees
Infrastructure providers of crypto listings have realised that there’s money to be made when it comes to creating paths to liquidity. To list an ICO on a known crypto exchange can cost anywhere between $1 – $3 million.
The application and entry fee on the Nasdaq Capital Market, for a listing of up to 15 million shares costs as little as $55,000 with annual fees roughly the same amount to remain listed.
“The market price to list a crypto token on an exchange is $1 million for a reasonably regarded token, to $3 million for an opportunity to get quick liquidity,” explained the authors of the report.
Tokens become more attractive if buyers know they can trade them easily, meaning the success of an ICO often comes down to getting the listing on an exchange.
Money to be Made
The authors do disclaim that the research is based on sleuthing inside Telegram groups and private conversations with those in the know, but there have been other rumblings elsewhere in the industry to suggest that these figures are accurate.
Business Insider reported it had found crypto exchanges charging a $1 million per ICO last month, while one altcoin developer told news.Bitcoin.com that they were quoted a fee of $3.5 million for being integrated with a popular mobile wallet.
In order to cover these astronomical fees, claims the report, startups are overfunding their projects. That’s lead to some companies amassing 10 times more in funding compared to companies that have used more traditional methods.
Blockchain startups have raised more than $3 billion in ICOs this year already, compared with about $270 million in venture capital rounds, lending further credibility to the claims made in the report.
Fat Off the Proceeds
The exchanges managing these ICOs have gotten fat off the proceeds. In 2017, Coinbase is reported to have made a $1 billion in profits and Binance upwards of $200 million. Advisers on the deals also take a cut, somewhere around 5 percent of the total deal.
Currently, over 98% of cryptocurrency exchange trading occurs on centralized exchange networks like Binance, Bitfinex, Okex and Upbit.
But there is hope. Decentralized exchanges such as Bisq offer similar services that centralized exchanges offer at a fraction of the price, but are still in the early stages of development.
Don’t expect the astronomical fees to disappear anytime soon.
Do you think it’s fair that exchanges charge so much? Let us know what you think in the comments below.
Images via Pixabay, Binance.