2019: the WeOwn year in review


It’s been a busy, productive 12 months

As 2019 draws to a close, it’s a great opportunity to take stock of the things we’ve achieved, and look forward to the new year ahead. We set out clear plans for the WeOwn business funding model in 2018, and this year we took some huge strides towards making them a reality.

Let’s take a look at our key milestones from 2019…

A new blockchain and a token swap

The first big development of 2019 was successfully launching our own blockchain environment (mainnet including the WeOwn Blockchain Explorer and the WeOwn Wallet). We then mobilised our community to swap their blockchain tokens over to our new blockchain, and also introduced a new validator incentive programme, for community validators and stakers with a delegated stake.

Most people have already completed their token swap, but there is still time to make the move if you haven’t done so yet – find out more here.

We understand that our CHX token, and the community investing it, has had a tough second half of the year; the story has been similar for the rest of the crypto sector, given the everlasting crypto winter. However, we remain positive about the future, and hope that additional utility use cases will benefit both our token and the entire network.

Launching an equity-based solution – and our first STO!

Building our own blockchain has been critical to creating new financial services products that make it quicker, simpler and cheaper for businesses to raise capital. This year, we have focused on using our blockchain to power equity-based solutions, and are delighted that we can now offer ambitious businesses the following live services:

  • Equity fundraising via security token offering (STO)
  • Investor management and servicing through our online platform
  • Bespoke financial services solutions for major enterprises (tokens as a service)

We’re delighted that Project Crowd became the first company to run an equity fundraise through our online platform this autumn – there’s still time to invest in Project Crowd if you’re interested.

We have now completed the majority of our platform and software developments, and most of our products will only require tweaks here and there, so 2020 will primarily focus on business development across all our business verticals.

Boosting our marketing and partnership activities will also take priority, in order to gain significant traction and business growth. Our mission still stands; for SMEs searching for capital, WeOwn is an open financial marketplace providing alternative business funding to accelerate company growth.

Reimaging the stock exchange for the future

Not content with transforming the equities world, we’ve started development work on some equally ambitious plans in other aspects of alternative business funding, which will come to fruition in 2020.

The biggest announcement has been WeExchange, our new global stock exchange model. WeOwn wants to make public listing more accessible and affordable for both companies and investors, and we outlined our vision in a new whitepaper, published in November. Our new stock exchange model has stirred a lot of interest in the industry, with media features in CityAM among others.

We also announced our intention to diversify our business funding portfolio next year by exploring the peer-to-peer lending space. Our development team is working hard in the background to make this a reality, and we’ve already put together an exciting pilot base of investors and clients.

Lending will be our major focus in the new year, and we anticipate rolling out a new lending service between SMEs and semi-professional/professional investors in Q1 2020.

Making investment fun!

The WeOwn mantra has always been to open up capital markets to new companies and investors. All of the initiatives we’ve been working on this year have supported this vision, and we’ve had some fun with it along the way!

In the summer, we created SillyCoin Valley, a new mobile app game, which is designed to introduce people to the world of STOs without any real money needing to change hands. Our brand evangelists, Ray and Rowan, launched SillyCoin Valley at Gamescom in Cologne, and hundreds of people have already downloaded the app to try their hand at virtual investing.

Creating strength in numbers

No man is an island, and WeOwn recognises that true industry change is only possible if we’re part of a wider movement. That’s why we’ve dedicated resources to forming new partnerships this year, and attending high-profile industry conferences and events, promoting both the WeOwn brand and our vision for the future.

One of the most important strategic alignments in 2019 has been forming the STO Alliance, a consortium of industry experts using Liechtenstein regulatory frameworks to provide the best services for STO users. We meet regularly to share knowledge and discuss how the digital investment landscape is evolving.

From Own to WeOwn: a new brand identity

Last, but definitely not least, we made a subtle but important change this year, renaming our company from Own to WeOwn, and launching a newly branded website.

The new branding is very important to us, as it reflects the critical importance of making sure business funding opportunities are owned by those in the relationship: companies and investors.

For too long, the balance of power (and profit) has rested with the many custodians and intermediaries involved in equity fundraising and loans, and our mission is to create a technology-driven model that ensures together, we own the market.

Your success is our success, and on behalf of everyone at Team WeOwn, we wish all our followers and advocates the very best. We really appreciate your positive support and community engagement, and our ambassadors and community administrators have done an especially fantastic job.

Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year to everyone – see you in 2020.

Sascha Ragtschaa
CEO, WeOwn