steps to raising funds through ico

How to Raise Funds Through ICO (Initial Coin Offering) 

Written by FirmEU

In recent years, the world of finance has witnessed a significant transformation with the rise of blockchain technology and cryptocurrencies. One revolutionary fundraising method that has gained immense popularity is the Initial Coin Offering (ICO). As interesting as this is, it is shocking that many people do not know about this. So, in this blog post, we will start from the very basics of ICO and guide you on how you can raise funds with this. However, it’s important to note that this article assumes a basic understanding of blockchain technology and cryptocurrency concepts. If you are new to these topics, familiarize yourself with them before diving into the world of ICOs. Moreover, if you find reading this blog post a difficult task, you can contact us to know more about how you successfully launch an ICO. 

What is Initial Coin Offering (ICO)?

The term “ICO” refers to a type of fundraising used by projects or startups to raise funds through the issuance and sale of digital tokens or cryptocurrencies. These tokens are often built on blockchain technology and can perform a variety of functions inside the project’s ecosystem. ICOs let investors purchase these tokens in exchange for established cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin or Ethereum, or even traditional currencies such as the US dollar.

ICO campaigns often begin with the creation of a whitepaper outlining the project’s goals, technology, and token distribution model. The whitepaper is an essential document that gives thorough information on the project and the token’s utility or investment potential to potential investors.

How ICOs Differ from Traditional Fundraising Methods

To make you understand the concept of ICO further, let us look into how this kind of fundraising is different from the regular fundraising that you may be more familiar with. 

ICO fundraising doesn’t work like traditional methods such as venture capital or initial public offerings (IPOs). ICOs, as opposed to traditional fundraising, offer a more accessible and inclusive method to finance. They enable everyone with an internet connection and the financial wherewithal to participate in investing opportunities.

Another major distinction is that ICOs are token-based. Typically, ICO investors purchase tokens that provide them access to specific features, services, or benefits within the project’s ecosystem. These tokens could be utility tokens that provide access to project services or security tokens that provide ownership or profit-sharing rights.

Additionally, ICOs often leverage blockchain technology, which enables transparency, immutability, and decentralized governance. This decentralized nature allows investors to have direct ownership and control over their tokens, eliminating the need for intermediaries like banks or brokers.

Examples of Successful ICO Projects

Several ICO projects have achieved extraordinary success throughout the years, raising significant funds and accomplishing big achievements in their respective industries. Among the notable examples are:

  • Ethereum (ETH): Ethereum’s initial coin offering (ICO) in 2014 raised approximately $18 million and was instrumental in introducing smart contracts and decentralized apps (dApps) to the blockchain ecosystem.
  • EOS (EOS): In 2017, EOS held one of the largest ICOs in history, generating roughly $4 billion. EOS aspires to provide a scalable and decentralized platform for decentralized applications.
  • Filecoin (FIL): In 2017, Filecoin raised more than $257 million, offering a decentralized storage network where users may rent out their excess storage space.

Steps to Raising Funds Through ICO

steps to raising funds through ico

Before beginning the process of preparing for an Initial Coin Offering (ICO), it is essential to understand the importance of thorough planning in increasing the likelihood of a successful fundraising campaign. Yes, ICOs have become a great way for businesses and entrepreneurs to raise funding by issuing and selling digital tokens. However, without appropriate planning and preparation, an ICO may fail to achieve its goals.

Several essential steps must be followed to achieve a smooth and productive ICO campaign. Identifying the project’s goals and funding requirements, doing market research and competitor analysis, creating a convincing whitepaper and roadmap, and assembling a competent team and advisory board are all part of this process.

By following a thorough preparation process, ICO participants can position themselves for success while ensuring compliance, transparency, and investor confidence. Furthermore, corporate service providers such as firmEU can give essential assistance throughout the planning process, assisting projects in navigating legal and regulatory difficulties and achieving their fundraising goals.

 1. Identifying Your Project’s Goals and Funding Requirements

Before launching an ICO, it is critical to understand your project’s goals and the precise funds needed to achieve them. Begin by thoroughly analyzing your project’s vision, mission, and objectives. Define the issue you want to solve and how your project would benefit users or investors.

Consider the specific finance requirements for your project’s development, marketing, and operations. This includes assessing the required fund and developing a reasonable budget that covers every aspect of the ICO campaign.

This may sound pretty simple and even as what you think you have done, but you need to treat this with all caution.

2. Conducting Market Research and Competitor Analysis

Market research is critical in determining the viability and possible success of an Initial Coin Offering (ICO). This critical phase allows entrepreneurs and project teams to gain valuable insights into market demand for their project concept and define their target audience. This is the major way that ICO organizers can make informed decisions and develop effective tactics to maximize their chances of success in the highly competitive cryptocurrency industry.

One of the key goals of ICO market research is to assess market demand for the project’s concept. This entails assessing potential funders’ and users’ enthusiasm for the proposed idea or solution. Understanding market demand allows ICO organizers to determine whether their idea meets a true need or solves an issue in a unique and captivating way. This knowledge aids in the development of the project’s value proposition and its effective market placement.

Furthermore, market research enables ICO organizers to correctly define their target audience. They can create their ideal user or investor profile by studying numerous demographic and psychographic aspects such as age, gender, interests, and preferences. This focused approach allows ICO organizers to adjust their marketing and communication efforts to resonate with their target demographic, increasing the likelihood of attracting and keeping valuable participants.

Additionally, through competitor analysis, ICO organizers can acquire insights into the methods and approaches that have proven effective in the industry. ICO organizers can improve their chances of success by analyzing competitors’ strengths and learning from their successes and failures.

3. Developing a Compelling Whitepaper and Roadmap

The whitepaper is the foundation of any ICO campaign. It describes your project’s technical and business features, giving potential investors a thorough grasp of your goal, technology, token model, and distribution strategy.

Your whitepaper should include:

  • Introduction: Clearly explain the purpose, goals, and unique value proposition of your ICO project.
  • Technical Details: Describe the underlying technology, blockchain protocol, and smart contract implementation.
  • Tokenomics: Explain the token distribution model, token supply, utility or investment potential, and any mechanisms for token staking or governance.
  • Roadmap: Present a timeline that outlines the project’s development milestones, demonstrating a clear path toward achieving your goals.
  • Team and Advisors: Highlight the qualifications and expertise of your core team members and any notable advisors supporting your project.
  • Marketing and Community Engagement: Discuss your marketing strategy and plans to foster a vibrant and engaged community around your project.

FirmEU, as a corporate service provider, can greatly assist throughout the planning stage. We guide our clients on project structure, and regulatory requirements, and guarantee compliance throughout the ICO process.

4. Building a Strong Team and Advisory Board

Putting together a capable and experienced team is important to the success of your ICO project. Hire people that are knowledgeable about blockchain technology, cryptocurrency, legal compliance, marketing, and project management.

To design and maintain the underlying blockchain technology, smart contracts, and token ecosystem, your team should have solid technical expertise. Members with prior experience in successful ICOs can also give useful views and skills.

Consider hiring advisors like firmEU, with industry skills and connections to provide advice on strategy and boost the credibility of your project. We can help you refine your business strategy, network, and navigate potential obstacles.

5. Understanding the Legal and Regulatory Considerations

When planning an Initial Coin Offering (ICO), it is essential to thoroughly look into and comprehend the legal and regulatory landscape. ICOs operate in a dynamic environment, and compliance with applicable laws and regulations is critical to assure compliance, safeguard investors, and maintain the project’s integrity. Working with legal counsel and corporate service providers like firmEU can provide valuable help in addressing the legal and regulatory considerations involved with ICOs. Let’s look at some essential points to think about under ICO legal consideration:

  • Researching and Understanding Relevant Regulations

ICO legislation differs widely across jurisdictions, thus it is critical that you become acquainted with the legal frameworks and requirements in the countries where you intend to conduct your ICO. Some jurisdictions have enacted unique ICO rules, while others may use existing securities, financial, or consumer protection laws.

  • Complying with KYC and AML Requirements

ICO organizers must implement robust KYC and AML procedures to verify the identities of investors. This is done to stop illicit activities including the financing of terrorism and money laundering. Collecting identifying documents, doing identity verification checks, and checking investors against watchlists and sanctions are all examples of appropriate KYC processes that can be put in place.

  • Engaging Legal Counsel for Regulatory Compliance

The legal and regulatory environment that surrounds ICOs might be difficult to navigate. Engaging legal advisors like FirmEU with expertise in blockchain and cryptocurrency legislation can be quite helpful in navigating and adhering to the relevant regulations.

Here at FirmEU, we assist our clients in examining and ensuring the compliance of their ICO documentation, such as the whitepaper, terms and conditions, and token sale agreements. We can also advise you on licensing needs, securities legislation, tax considerations, and other legal matters unique to your jurisdiction.

6. Setting up a Good Corporate Structure

A good corporate structure is critical for an Initial Coin Offering (ICO) project’s success and durability. A well-designed corporate structure ensures not only legal compliance but also a foundation for effective governance, accountability, and transparency. Let us look at the most important factors to consider in building the right ICO structure:

  • Choosing the Right Legal Entity

Selecting the appropriate legal entity is the first step in establishing a strong corporate structure. Factors such as the project’s nature, jurisdiction, tax implications, and liability considerations come into play. Common options include incorporating as a company, foundation, or cooperative, depending on the project’s objectives and regulatory requirements.

FirmEU can assist in assessing the advantages and disadvantages of different legal entities and jurisdictions and guide you through the incorporation process remotely. That means we can help you choose the best location and set up the entity without you traveling to the chosen jurisdiction. We also provide expert advice on Company Incorporation, legal entity formation, and compliance with local corporate laws.

  • Defining Roles and Responsibilities

It is essential to clearly define the roles and responsibilities within your ICO project for effective operations and decision-making. Identify and clearly define important team members, such as executives, directors, and advisors, as well as their roles, duties, and reporting structures.

  • Establishing Clear Governance and Decision-Making Processes

An ICO project’s governance processes should be open and well-defined in order to ensure accountability and protect investors’ interests. It is critical to establish a clear decision-making structure, establish voting rights, and implement checks and balances.

At firmEU, we help establish mechanisms for token holder participation, voting protocols, and community governance, ensuring transparency and fairness in decision-making.

  • Addressing Tax and Accounting Considerations

Understanding and addressing tax and accounting considerations are critical for an ICO project’s financial health and compliance. Tax responsibilities may differ according to the jurisdiction and type of token issued. To maintain openness and build investor trust, proper accounting standards and financial reporting are also required.

Remote corporate services provided by FirmEU include tax planning and accounting expertise. Even in a remote setting, we can advise you on tax implications, aid with financial reporting, and assure compliance with relevant accounting standards.

7. ICO Marketing and Promotion

Marketing and promotion play a vital role in the success of an Initial Coin Offering (ICO). This simply implies creating awareness, attracting potential investors, and building trust in the project. A well-executed marketing strategy can help generate interest, drive token sales, and create a strong community around your ICO. 

Furthermore, leveraging various channels such as social media, content marketing, influencer partnerships, and targeted advertising can effectively reach your target audience. Engaging with reputable marketing agencies can also provide valuable expertise in ICO marketing and promotion, helping to maximize visibility and engagement for your project. 

8. Conducting the ICO

After you’ve completed the preparatory phase, which includes legal considerations, corporate structuring, and advertising strategies, it’s time to launch your Initial Coin Offering (ICO). This step entails launching your token sale, interacting with investors, and overseeing the entire fundraising process. Let’s delve into this a bit:

  • The Mechanism for Token Sale

Choose a token sale mechanism that is compatible with your project’s goals and regulatory needs. A set price sale, Dutch auction, or tiered pricing structure are all common approaches. Define the token distribution and allocation model, including the percentages allocated to the ICO, team, advisors, and community.

  • Smart Contract Development and Auditing

Developing a secure and audited smart contract is crucial to ensure the integrity of your token sale. To reduce the possibility of vulnerabilities or security breaches, hire skilled blockchain developers to build and extensively test your smart contract. Conduct third-party audits to increase transparency and investor trust.

  • KYC/AML Procedures and Investor Onboarding

Implement stringent investor onboarding procedures to verify participants’ identities and ensure compliance with Know Your Customer (KYC) and Anti-Money Laundering (AML) legislation. Collect required documents, perform due diligence, and confirm compliance with privacy and data protection regulations.

  • A Platform for Token Sales

Choose a trustworthy and safe token sale platform to handle the technical parts of your ICO. The platform ought to make token purchasing easier, allow for rapid transaction processing, and provide a user-friendly interface for investors to participate in the sale.

  • Investor Communication and Assistance

Establish clear communication routes to deliver timely information, respond to investor inquiries, and provide continuing support. Engage with your community on a regular basis via social media, forums, newsletters, and live events to cultivate a robust and active investor base.

  • Actions Following the ICO

After the ICO, concentrate on post-ICO activities like token distribution, exchange listing, and ongoing project development. Maintain transparency by giving investors regular progress updates and following through on the promises made in your whitepaper and strategy.


Embarking on an Initial Coin Offering (ICO) journey requires careful planning, preparation, and execution. By following a systematic approach, you can increase the likelihood of a successful fundraising campaign while maintaining compliance with legal and regulatory requirements. FirmEU, as a remote corporate service provider, offers valuable assistance throughout the ICO process, from setting up a solid corporate structure to conducting the ICO itself.

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