savedroid ICO Review

Before reading this article, please read our disclaimer found at the bottom of the article or here.

The Savings Token

Introduction

savedroid is a company based in Frankfurt, Germany. Their purpose is to help people save money through a bot that automatically invests and saves your cryptocurrencies. They have been in operation since 2015. Their original application was created for banking has been downloaded over 200,000 times in Germany, and they are now looking to expand worldwide and into the crypto market.

Their ICO is currently ongoing, they are raising 60M€ in exchange for their SVD Token, the company currently sells 100 SVD for 1€ (minus discounts). Their website can be found here. savdroid has already raised over 25M€ for their ICO with 19 days left.

The Idea

What makes this company special is the fact that their team is heavily stacked, the founders have worked in FinTech for over 10 years, and they have experience building, testing, and deploying a previous software product. Their application already has a user base and is highly rated, giving them a huge edge over most ICOs.

Originally the idea behind savedroid was a mobile platform that included a savings robot. Their belief is that saving money is boring, and tedious. Their solution is simple: you set up goals or “desires” through their mobile app, then the robot would take part of your income and put it into a savings account. Depending on your income and goals, you could, for example, automatically save 5% of your income into their savings account every month. You can also program an activity that would save your money, eg. you save $10 every time you go to the gym. They dubbed these activities / events, “smooves”. The money is stored in a free savings account with a partner bank “Wirecard”.

Two years later, the team at savedroid realized that even though helping Germans save money is important, the market for investing in cryptos might be even more so. There are hundreds of millions of people all over the world investing and purchasing cryptocurrencies, most of these investments are difficult and come with a lot of hassle. This is a complex market worth over half a trillion dollars by market cap. The creators evaluated their mobile application, and redesigned their savings robot for the crypto market.

“Honestly, the user experience along the entire [cryptocurrency] journey completely sucks… the idea is to enable people to invest in cryptocurrencies, derivatives, and ICOs in a simple and gamified way”

– Dr. Yassin Hankir, CEO at savedroid

Traction

The team at savedroid has been developing their FinTech platform since 2015. Their current non-crypto version of savedroid has been downloaded over 200,000 times and is only available to German citizens, who have collectively saved over 10M€. Their app has a rating of 4.2 stars. Half of their users are within the 25–34 demographic. This was partially possible due to a 3M€ equity investment they received in 2017.

The platform also claims to be developing a self-learning artificial intelligence algorithm that knows exactly how best to save and optimize your expenses. Apparently the AI will be launched this year and will be improved over the lifetime of the company. Their plan is to enable the robot to purchase cryptocurrencies this year and be able to trade futures by 2020.

savedroid has also been able to build a strong network of partners. The idea is to be able to offer as many financial tools as possible to their customers. This includes savings accounts, credit cards, trading platforms, and direct access to the Frankfurt Stock Exchange. Their plan is to continue expanding the list of partners to offer more investment instruments and options.

The Token

The SVG (savedroid) token is based on a standard ERC20 Ethereum smart contract. Users will be able to sell and trade SVD tokens with each other after the ICO’s distribution event. The SVD Token has the following properties:

  • savedroid savings fees
  • Trading other cryptocurrencies
  • As a storage of value
  • Other services within the network

The company will also artificially deflate the market by burning their own tokens to increase price, this will happen as a percentage of the used tokens when users pay for the savings services. The company describes the flow of their tokens through the following chart:

Image Caption: Image from Page 31 of the savedroid white paper v1.4 found here.

Their platform will enable users to trade:

  • Ethereum
  • Bitcoin
  • Ripple
  • IOTA,
  • Dash
  • Stellar
  • Others

Their plan is to be able to also trade their token in cryptocurrency exchanges. You can also buy tokens directly from the company, as they will keep a percentage of the tokens.

They plan to distribute the token in the following way:

Image Caption: savedroid’s token allocation, from their White Paper v1.4 found here.

Technology

The team at savedroid claims that their robot savings algorithm is the core of their technology. The way it works is by defining certain triggering events or activities in the user’s everyday life, called “smooves”. Every time the user participates on one of these self-imposed activities, the robot is triggered which causes it to safe some predetermined amount of money by storing it in a savings account. It is unclear what makes this technology “smart”, and seems to be mostly a gamification of savings.

The company also claims that the robot is able to optimize savings. The way it is explained, the robot can determine what type of purchase activity the user realized, and is able to determine a more efficient alternative to that activity. Their example is telephone bills, the robot should be able to find a cheaper contract that offers the same value, or a credit card with better rates than your current one. It is also unclear how or if this works, as the company calls it its “secret sauce” and does not go very deep in the details.

ICO Details

Their ICO is currently ongoing. Their Pre-ICO started in January 12th and finished January 26th. During the Pre-ICO the company offered a 30% bonus to purchasers of SVD. The estimated price will be 100 SVD = 1€

Their ICO started in February 9th and will go on until March 2018, offering 55% of all SVDs available for purchase (5.5 billion). During their white paper they explained they were expecting to sell in the lower double digits millions of SVD, they have already sold over 3 billion of them.

These percentages are probably heavily off since they were planning on raising $1–3M USD and they have been able to do over ten times more. The following chart explains how they explain to use the more than $30M USD they have made so far:

Image Caption: Savedroid’s use of funds, from their White Paper v1.4 found here.

The soft cap for their ICO is 50 million SVD and their hard limit is 5.5 billion. As of February 18th, 2018, they have sold over 3.3 billion tokens (over 60% of available hard limit), so they may run out of tokens before their end date.

The Team

Core Team

Big claims require a lot of evidence. In the case of savedroid team, there are a lot of reasons to believe they will be able to deliver their promises.Their team is only 20 people, however the team has been in the financial industry for a while, and has an experienced advisory board.

The CEO of savedroid is Dr. Yassin Hankir, an economics PhD that worked for McKinsey & Company as a private consultant for banks, he then moved into developing his first financial company, and later developed savedroid. Their COO, Marco Trautmann, is also an experienced banking and IT professional. Also from McKinsey where he worked as a product manager. Lastly, their CTO, Tobias Zander is a software developer with experience in e-commerce, and also a blog writer.

The rest of the team includes veterans in IT for banking, as well as economics students. Needless to say the team at savedroid loves banking and infrastructures.

Advisors

savedroid’s advisory board includes an extremely competent list of founders and Chief-level executives of several German finance, AI, and consulting companies including: Infosys, 2iQ Research, Traxpay, ETRONIKA, SatoshiPay, 360T, and over 10 others.

The team and advisory board of this ICO are certainly some of its strongest points.

Criticisms

It is currently not clear how the platform will enable users to exchange their cryptocurrency back into fiat. They do not define the process, price, or how much they will potentially be charging per transaction back to fiat. Page 14 of the version 1.4 of their white paper states:

“They will automatically receive a virtual, fully secured wallet and all fiat funds that the user wants to covert to cryptocurrencies will be converted magically in the background to the selected cryptocurrency.”
— Page 14 v1.4 savedroid’s White Paper

We are not sure what “magically” means but it would be good to clarify.

This is mentioned at the conclusion as well, but there are no indications or explanations regarding their trading and savings algorithm or “Robot”. It is mentioned multiple times that it relies on a secret AI technology but we wish there was more information about this or some sort of test or validation that is real.

It seems that the trading platform will rely on a sort of hot wallet mechanism, this can obviously carry multiple different dangers, as we have mentioned on previous articles, in short, you are trusting a third party with your private keys, which is a great target for hackers, as well as much more sensitive to human mediocrity and / or corruption.

While their partnership list is fantastic, it is also extremely centered in the German markets. This was understanding from a German company helping Germans save money, but now that they are expanding to a global scale, it is crucial for the company to adapt worldwide partnerships.

Regarding the price of the token, the company has decided to utilize the gimmick practice of artificially deflating the token by destroying (burning) some of the token, thus increasing price.

Conclusion

The company seems to have put a huge emphasis in organizational transparency. This ICO is following regulations and compliance in multiple ways. It is one of the few ICOs that we have seen coming from Germany that are not based in some tax haven country such as Switzerland in order to avoid paying tax. The company has gone through great lengths to make sure they demonstrate that they have incorporated, raised funds before, and also a clear idea of who the team and advisors are.

It should be the norm to follow rules and regulations in ICOs, specially in FinTech, but this is really not the case for the majority of them. We are very pleasantly surprised with this German company and its need to follow regulations. The company also complies with security auditings provided by TÜV Saarland Group, to make sure that they follow industry standards for cyber security.

That said, not everything was completely transparent. Their technology, and more specifically the algorithms, ideas, or any proof of the workings of the robot were missing from the White Paper. We understand they want to keep it secret, but we don’t even get to look at the variables, data, or any other measurable metric of success. We simply do not know anything about the complexity of the algorithm(s) used.

Even with these hiccups we think that this will be a successful ICO. There are over 19 days left for their ICO and they have already managed to sell half of their tokens for about 25M€.The company is trying to solve a very important and common problem that plagues ICOs: Complexity and large volumes. As more people are getting into cryptocurrencies, it is clear to us that offering simple financial and savings options will become increasingly important.

Lastly, the company has a lot going for it. The team is heavily stacked, and well connected in the German FinTech circles (some of the strongest financial services in the world), the team has done a lot of research and put quite a meticulous product over the last two and a half years. Which are probably their biggest strengths.

Interestingly, their white paper is quite possibly one of the most dynamic white papers we have ever read. If only because they essentially created a YouTube video for every single one of the white paper chapters. You can find the entire playlist here.

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For our last review read:
Check it at Ripple Coin Review

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savedroid ICO Review was originally published in Hacker Noon on Medium, where people are continuing the conversation by highlighting and responding to this story.

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