What does backlog mean?
Have you stopped providing funding for projects with names?
Which is a valid project?
What does backlog mean?
Have you stopped providing funding for projects with names?
Which is a valid project?
A short informational update, light in detail on specific proposals on purpose, but intended to how what is happening by on the scenes
We sent out updates to the various proposals from late last week. Some have been rejected and some are moving to the next phase of due diligence and investment decisions.
We are not naming those that or progressing as they are not yet firm investments. So we cant name the rejections either.
Apologies @GodTanu I just saw this question.
Backlog is the list of the proposals that were waiting in the NCF queue from before the NEM Ventures public vote.
Funding for projects that were approved before the NEM Ventures vote are still being funded under the old system with a committee measuring milestones and ensuring they meet the guidelines from when they were approved.
The list you quoted is one for proposals that are being considered for investment. Once we complete due diligence and investments are signed we will confirm which from that list will be backed by NEM Ventures.
Hi all, its been two weeks with no update so here is what has been going at NEM Ventures.
Its been a very busy couple of weeks, and obviously last week was somewhat turbulent for most of the community. We have been inundated with questions from a lot of places, as I am sure other members of the ecosystem have, so we published a basic NEM Ecosystem overview that seems to be well received. The draft version made it to NEM Russia, Espaniol, Japan, Red & Malaysia within hours of posting on our telegram channel. So we have put a more complete version on the website for easy reference:
If anyone is trying to explain the difference between NEM, the Foundation, the Devs, Tech Bureau, Ventures etc, it may be a helpful link to reshare. It has already been picked up by two websites/news blogs and we welcome anyone else who wants to share it, all we ask is that credit be given the original source.
NEM Ventures Highlights
We are in advanced stages of negotiation with 2 promising investments from the backlog, more detail once they conclude. One in particular is spinning off several very positive partnerships and we expect will generate some strong publicity in due course as well, lead via a massive PR agency in the industry. These are still subject to final agreement though so are not yet signed or able to be communicated publicly.
We are progressing a further 2 of the six with more detailed due diligence questions which is progressing well.
One of the backlog projects is having so much success they are very busy, we have placed them on hold to let them focus on the business rather than investment and will pick up as soon as they are ready. Its a very positive sign for them and we are glad to see the founder prioritising commercial viability over investment if it is not an immediate requirement.
We have been able to introduce the final company in the backlog to two potential sources of new business and also make connections between 3 of the backlog companies who are now starting to work together. Its great to be able to make connections for the benefit of everyone where we can see complimentary approaches
We have drawn down the first two tranches of the Operating Budget and are in the process of setting up a bank account, OTC facilities and sourcing accountants etc. We hope to be able to offer an OTC service introduction for projects or individuals seeking to liquidate larger volumes to try and avoid the dumps onto the market we have seen in the past and reduce price slippage. This is still under negotiation but it looks promising.
We hit all our milestones for Q1 and we are about to draw down the first tranch of the investment budget in advance of making the first investments
We have had very positive discussions with a couple of new partners which we can’t share detail on just yet but if they progress as we expect, its likely we will have some more positive news. These are similar in profile to the Blockchain Token Association (BTA) which brought NEM into an agreement to implement the Verified Token Frame (VTF), a security token framework which is akin to the minimum requirements needed to implement security tokens effectively on Catapult public chain
It may be a couple of weeks until the next update just because of how quickly things are moving but we will try and share as much as we can, when we can, as always
Thanks @DaveH for the highlights.
This has really gone quite far, I am sure there will be a few more updated versions of this soon. Thanks for putting things into perspective and excited to see projects get funded soon and succeeding for 2019/2020 and beyond.
How did this partnership progress? it is a very good step forward especially in anticipation for the Catapult public chain launch.
Yep its popped up all over the place, we are happy for people to use it as long as credit to the source is noted.
How did this partnership progress? it is a very good step forward especially in anticipation for the Catapult public chain launch.
We are finalising the paperwork at present but NEM is now a founding member and appear in the media releases alongside names like TZero, Sharespost, Techemy Capital, GSX and others. We have undertaken a gap analysis with the PMC (core devs, tech bureau and NEM Europe) based on the framework document as it stands to date - we expect to be able to support it on v1 of Catapult Public Chain at this stage but there is naturally work still to be done to get there. It should line us up nicely for the Security Token movement that we can all see is on its way
As the blockchain lead for the DARC token building on NEM (and also an advisor for MarginX), I was very excited to see that NEM became involved with the VTF soon after its inception. I would love to be a part of the conversation as we as a community move forward in creating a Catapult-friendly security token standard. I think the potential is there to make a much more robust standard than anything I’ve seen so far on Ethereum. We at DarcMatter agree that this is 100% where NEM should be headed. I’m so glad to have run across this thread and can see just how much progress NEM Ventures has made in an extremely short amount of time.
This is awesome!
Hi @Prof_K - I’ll send you a PM
Update for the week - its a been a very busy and productive one, notable events below:
WE ARE NOW ACCEPTING NEW PROPOSALS
Which is a pretty big milestone for us, this means we have finished processing the NCF backlog except for a final few companies which we will make announcements on as we can. We expect to make the first one next week in relation to the first investment decision assuming paperwork goes smoothly.
The process for submitting is outlined here: https://nemventures.io/submit-proposal/
Please note that is a MINIMUM requirement that all proposals sign and NDA and submit a pitch deck with an overview not only of the project/tech but also a summary business etc. Once that is submitted, we will review briefly and either progress, ask clarification questions to allow progression or reject the proposal. Assuming it progresses, the next step will be to submit:
This is non-negotiable, we are assessing companies, not projects, any submissions that do not have these will be put on hold or rejected out right.
Several private approaches have been made trying to avoid doing this - for clarity it is the company’s job to present the proposed business/investment and do the homework needed to be considered a viable proposal, not ours to write it for the company. We have put some tips on the FAQ to help with this process for anyone not familiar with the requirements https://nemventures.io/faq/
We have made very good progress this week and been accepted for a bank account in Gibraltar, there are some KYC processes to finish but we expect to have an account in the next 1-2 weeks. This has taken about 2 weeks end-end and is just one of the reasons why we selected Gibraltar as a jurisdiction.
We have engaged a strong OTC partner who is working very efficiently behind the scenes with us and being understanding of our fluid nature just now while all the legalities are sorted out. We expect to be able to announce the partnership in the next couple of weeks. Similar to the Bank, there are some KYC paperwork processes to finish off but in principle it is there and has a very cost effective rate.
While we were going through the incorporation and backlog, we allowed various companies to submit pitchdeck’s to go on hold pending opening to new submissions. There were 23 in the end, mainly from people who just missed the NCF cut off, or referrals via the NEM Foundation. We didn’t look at any of these while processing the backlog but have now gone through the first pass:
The way these will be processed is that the team will prioritise them based on attractiveness, need for funding, strategic relationships, responsiveness of the proposers etc. So we will not be processing chronologically as we did with the NCF backlog, this will be managed in more of a commercial manner and we will manage the queue as works most appropriately for NEM Ventures and ultimately the community.
Blockchain Token Association - Founding Membership
We have taken over the membership discussions with the BTA in order to secure access to the Verified Token Framework (VTF). This was originally being picked up by the Foundation but given the recent turmoil had stalled a bit. I have submitted our application and it has been accepted. NEM Ventures will now be paying the membership fee for this consortium on behalf of NEM generally and co-ordinate the relationship, bringing in the PMC etc where appropriate.
We have been speaking to a couple of promising early stage partnerships over the past two weeks that we hope to be able to share more in as they progress and we have finished appropriate due diligence on.
There will no doubt be some distractions with the vote coming up but we hope to focus more on progressing the remaining NCF backlog proposals and the new deal flow in parallel. We encourage every member of the community to vote on both proposals - your voice is important and if you don’t vote, you can’t really complain if the result isn’t what you wanted.
To confirm, NEM Ventures has maintained neutrality with regard to both proposals as the custom/precedent. We will not be using our corporate wallets to vote, similarly to how the Foundation entities managed our own vote - so as not to skew the results with large holdings and we presume the two entities involved in the proposals will be doing the same as is the custom. The directors will cast individual votes according to their own views and a free to vote as they choose with no direction being suggested from NEM Ventures.
Its been a busy week and great to see some positive new stories coming up about NEM / XEM
That’s really good news. I hope you guys get really good proposals that can help to grow NEM ecosystem. I will announce that to some contacts and partners that might be interested.
Congrats for the good job.
Update on a few areas of progress so far:
Our first investment decision has now been made, paperwork finalised and we will be announcing it in a few days. We are coordinating some wider PR around it right now with the company, another investor (and NEM Ventures partner) and a major PR provider that we hope will extend reach beyond the forums, telgram etc so its under wraps while that is done. But the transaction itself is complete and Id expect days or a week away approximately.
We are taking a second recommendation through the investment committee process this week having completed due diligence and negotiations. Paperwork is likely to take a couple of weeks from there so a further announcement due on that soon.
We have been in active discussions with two partners in relation to a new xem listing. It is likely to be finalised early-mid may and there are strategic reasons behind the partnership, the listing is just a first step and wasnt the primary reason for engaging. More to follow as we are able to.
We have been working away on a couple of internal ideas that we think will ease some operational challenges as much for ourselves as other entities and projects holding significant xem. This is early stage yet and will take a few weeks/months to crystalise. Again more to come when there is something concrete.
After a surprisingly painful amount of KYC we expect to have the bank fully operational in the next 5-10 days (fingers crossed) and similarly with otc and exchange accounts. The Bank has indicated they are happy to assist other elements of the ecosystem once we are setup up and we have offered that intro to the other entities if they need it.
This week and next we have a lot of competing demands for our time but you can expect to see at least the PR effects of point 1 above and if possible I will release further info on all of the points as it becomes available.
Its likely we will be trying to hit PR headlines 2 or 3 times in the next month or so. So, hopefully, that will begin to have a positive external effect reputationally for us all. Fingers crossed!
Thank you for these updates. Much appreciated!
It is with great pleasure that we can announce the first investment by NEM Ventures, full details in a post here:
I am happy to be able to announce that through working with the GBX as part of a couple of initiatives, it has been possible to list XEM on the GBX exchange which is one of the first regulated, insured and national stock exchanges to list digital assets, the pairings will be XEM/USD, XEM/BTC & XEM/ETH
I just realised it has been about a month since the last update, things have been so busy I haven’t sat down to write one, apologies. Various things have been released on our Telegram group.
Here is a wrap up in one place:
1. Backlog Investments: In addition to the investment in Vimba we have progressed two NCF backlog proposals to contract negotiation stage. We expect this to conclude shortly depending on lawyers. One of these I mentioned in an earlier update, the paperwork is taking a bit longer than expected but is progressing. I won’t give full detail until the paperwork is signed. There are still a few more backlog proposals that Due Diligence is still progressing on but has taken a bit longer others, for good reasons, there will be further updates on these as progress continues.
2 Non Backlog Investments: A third pipeline investment is being finalised - this time for a non NCF backlog company; representing the first investment was brought into the pipeline by NEM Ventures directly. As soon as we can release information we will do - it is a very significant strategic investment and likely to be a co-investment with multiple large organisations in both traditional capital and crypto markets. It is all under wraps for the time being while communications are aligned and other investors complete their due diligence but we have completed ours. It may take several weeks for this to be released.
3. Proposal Count: We have reviewed a total of 58 proposals since we started; including the original 24 from the backlog and 34 new ones. 13 are undergoing detailed Due Diligence, the other 45 have been a mixture of proposers being unresponsive, withdrawing or being rejected in due diligence for a number of reasons. I am aware of several more that will be submitted shortly.
4. Logo We commissioned a designer to provide NEM Ventures with a new logo, one that clearly shows we are part of the NEM family and compliments the existing collateral, but also clearly sets us apart. The result is now on the NEM Ventures website and we are creating a Press Pack section shortly which will provide access to bigger versions. Any of our portfolio companies or partners are free to use it on their materials providing they check with us first and we expect to see it popping up in a few places soon (see below). We are aware of a minor colour oversight that is being corrected very shortly.
5. Communications & PR - we have engaged Wachsman one of, if not the biggest PR name in the Blockchain and Crypto space to run our PR and media comms. Wachsman will also extend that service to the NEM Foundation and wider ecosystem via ourselves. They were instrumental in the placements we received for the Vimba investment (including Yahoo finance) and also worked with us on the GBX listing PR. The value of working with experienced professionals with the right networks was crystallized through those announcements in addition to their reputation preceding them. The arrangement is initially for 9-12 months but we expect it to be extended based on results. We have worked with Alexandra and the NEM Foundation Council to ensure they are included in the contract and able to access the benefit this agreement offers. We expect this to be part of helping solve that fact that often the good news and work in NEM doesn’t making it into the bigger news sites; in addition to numerous other benefits that come with working with the premier Blockchain and Crypto PR agency. Watch this space, it is just getting going.
6. KYC/AML We have contracted with Know Your Customer an AML/KYC provider based in Dublin who will assist with meeting various regulatory obligations. Similar to exchanges, banks, etc we need to ensure companies are who they claim to be, companies are correctly registered and the source of funds is clean. KnowYourCustomer provides a platform to do that efficiently and cost effectively, they will form part of our wider Due Diligence process. We also have access to a compliance officer through our legal firm who if required can conduct further investigation on any red flags. This will be a mandatory step for all companies prior to investment.
7. Q2 Board Meeting
We will be having our second board meeting in mid April with the governance group. To date all milestones are being broadly met, however the NFP ones have taken a back seat due to the various NEM Foundation/NEM Labs proposals and scopes changing - to avoid duplicating work. We expect to pick this up later this year and agreed with the governance group early in Q2 that we will move the NFP milestones back but add several extra stretch ones for Q2 that are more aligned with what the business needs short term.
1. Tutellus We are happy to be supporting Tutellus in the their Demo Day on 10th of April 2019. The day will showcase projects from their current Masters in Blockchain cohort in a contest, with real time voting being conducted via the audience using the NEM public chain. We are supplying support to the winning projects to help them commercialise their ideas, write business plans etc. I will be attending to represent NEM Ventures and look forward to meeting the teams in person.
We have signed an MoU with Gibraltar Stock Exchange (our national stock exchange) to investigate various areas of collaboration in relation to Security Tokens. They are also a founding member of the Verified Token Framework (https://verifiedtokenframework.com/)
3. NEM Español Interview
I was recently interviewed by Alexis Trujillo Reinefeld from NEM Español about what we have been up to, how best to get in touch with us and the Tutellus demo day above. The content is naturally in Spanish but for those in the community who can understand it, the video is above.
1. Existing proposal pipeline
We have made excellent progress reducing this from 58 to 13, BUT we want to have it closed to 3-5 so that we can ensure a timely turnaround for proposals. We expect this quarter to continue reaching that goal.
2. Investment proposal pipeline
Now that we have the proposal pipeline under control and into normal business operations. We will be actively looking at how we can help ensure it is well topped up. This is likely to involve working with you the community to highlight projects you want us to look at, getting out to conferences which we are being invited to generally for free due to being a VC and generally getting out name out there as open for business.
3. Incubators and Startup Campuses
We are actively investigating a few partnership ideas for how we can get involved in high quality startup campuses and incubators to try and bring more projects and proposals onto NEM. Ultimately as an investment company we are uniquely placed to be able to partner with these organisations to help bring high quality projects into the ecosystem - and naturally into our investment pipeline. We expect there to be a lot of overlap with some of the NEM Foundation’s efforts in these areas, but from a very different angle and to be collaborating closely where appropriately.
There are bound to be several others that I have forgotten and we will try and add separately - things are moving very quickly and its a busy few months since we got started but operations are now coming into normal running and processes are starting to work to help us run as efficiently as possible.
As always, keep an eye on our our telegram group and this forum post for further updates
It has been a while since we had an update, this is because there is nothing unduly major to report but we have grouped several minor updates and I want to give a window into what is happening behind the scenes. We expect to be making a few larger, more focused updates ones over the coming weeks/months.
Last week we signed our second investment, it is a company that was part of the original NCF backlog, there are a few things to wrap up but we will try to make a PR announcement in the next week if the remaining admin goes smoothly.
This week we signed our third investment, again into a company that was part of the original NCF backlog, the company concerned is doing some re-branding work so the PR announcement is being delayed until that is complete, probably a few weeks away.
Both of the above will be communicated externally for us by Wachsman, our PR agency, We will ensure the forum and NEM Flash is updated to carry the news.
The names are deliberately not public knowledge until that point as it gives the companies better PR exposure which helps them and as a result our investments in them.
2. Q2 Milestones Met
We held our second quarterly board meeting in early April with the governance group appointed by Core to sit over NEM Ventures and provided an update to Core (and by inclusion the Core Devs). All updates went smoothly and milestones are on track as agreed with the governance group - so approval was given to our second Opex and Investment budget draw down. We will have a similar meeting in late June/early July for Q3.
3. KYC Solution
Our KYC solution is now live, there was a slight delay due to some teething issues with paying invoices in FIAT which are now resolved. The provider is https://www.knowyourcustomer.com, they are based out of Hong Kong and Ireland and all companies we invest in will have to pass full KYC and AML checks, similar to exchange or bank level checks. This ensures we remain compliant with Gibraltar regulations and is good business practice. The solution is well automated and extremely cost effective (approx 5-10% of the price of paying for the service manually). If anyone needs a good solution for IEO/STO type activities feel free to get in touch and we can introduce you to them.
4. Trading Desk
As mentioned on NEM Red earlier today, we have had an internal trading desk running for several months now, slowly diversifying some of our budgets out to Fiat and other currencies to allow us to protect NEM Ventures in the event of a major dump and also to allow us to assist with some market making activity. We have been able to help a couple of long standing Nembers with some liquidation needs and are starting to work with other NEM entities and super node holders to offer the ecosystem a cost effective OTC function which helps prevent some of the larger sell orders impacting the market.
Naturally, our OTC capability is restricted by our budgets available and requirements on those, however we will try and help wherever possible with trades over ~$50k. All customers will need to pass KYC/AML in the same way they would with Exchanges or other OTC services.
5. Media Opportunties
Wachsman have been doing a fantastic job securing commentary opportunties, podcast appearances and journalist interviews. These are important to help us ensure NEM receives regular coverage in the media and we can explain what NEM, NEM Ventures and the team are all about. To date I have covered most of these but expect to see that changing over the next few months as we move other team members into more public positions as well. I hold my hands up that some of them have gone well and others could have gone better than they did, none have been awful thankfully! Its a learning process and we are getting better with each opportunity. A couple of very prominent Crypto media appearances are coming in the next 2-3 months and we will be sure to let the community know when they are available.
Commentary so far has appears in Forbes several times and other major Crypto and non-crypto outlets, we have little control over the headlines but the content is always monitored and corrected where possible if answers have been misinterpreted. A quick google for NEM Ventures will turn a few of these up.
6. Wachsman - NEM Foundation
We mentioned in an earlier update that the contract we have in place with Wachsman to cover the NEM Ventures PR work, also covers the NEM Foundation. We have been working with Alex, Laura and Jason recently on helping ensure all the messaging is unified and the Foundation are now also working with Wachsman to help with the media distribution of announcements. This is important over the next few months as we lead into Catapult releases and Laura has been doing a fantastic job coordinating the Catapult series.
I know a couple of criticisms have been aired about some older news stories being re-shared. While I understand the frustration for older Nembers who are seeing the same news again, it is important to help ensure the message is seen by those members in the community who have joined recently and any reshares of that news ultimately helps cement NEM as a consistent news story so is helpful generally. We are doing our best to ensure there is plenty of new news coming tho, rest assured ;).
7. Investment Deal Flow
Most of the above are support functions necessary to run NEM Ventures day to day, a very important part of that is ensuring we attract sufficient proposals of an invest grade quality. At present we are receiving an average of 3-5 a month and have ~14 in the pipeline in varying stages of assessment. It is impossible to say how many of those will be funded until Due Diligence is completed but a couple of new ones that have come direct to NEM Ventures are looking very promising. These contain a mixture of use cases, benefits to Nem, strategic partnerships, investment amount/stages.
There are 2 proposals from the original NCF backlog which are still being assessed; for good reason their business planning has taken longer than others and there is no rush to close that process down. The companies are progressing well and need investment in short-medium term, but its not needed immediately so it is preferable they focus on building rather than fund raising and we are working to support them as we can; names deliberately not released for privacy.
We are now starting to work with co-investment partners to share deal flow and increase awareness of NEM generally, over the next 3-6 month we expect this to start moving more formally. A beta opportunity is being assessed with the first partner right now and the process is helping us enormously given the lean size of our team and budget.
We are actively working with the executive teams of a couple of major players in the Crypto space with a view to forming strategic partnerships across multiple streams. I can’t share much more information on these due to their sensitive nature and they will take multiple months to come to fruition, but when/if they do there will be plenty of PR around them and it will become obvious; they include liquidity providers, banking partners and exchange listings.
9. NEM Ecosystem Activities
As always we have been trying to ensure we stay active on telegram, answering questions where possible. If anyone asked something important that we missed do please ping admins etc to highlight it for us.
We have been actively working with various members of the ecosystem (Tech Bureau, Greg Evias, Paul Rieger & Julian of EU, Jeff as interim CTO and recently other NEM Foundation members) on a Security Token special interest group. Providing input, discussion and access to partners who are interested in Security Tokens generally. This was initially off the back of the work done to incorporate the Verified Token Framework into Catapult requirements and has now expanded out to cover the topic in general.
The chair of our Investment Committee and Governance group David Shaw has been working with the NEM Foundation as per their recent announcement in an advisory capacity on various organisational change and commercial items. I would expect to see more on this in the coming weeks as well.
I am writing this update from Toronto, Canada. Where I have interrupted a family holiday in the region to join Alex for a Hackathon ( https://www.toronto.cryptochicks.ca). We hope to be able to attend similar events over the next 6-12 months as a good way to support NEM and meet potential investment opportunities. The Tutellus event mentioned in earlier updates was for similar reasons, if you are aware of other events we should look at, do please let us know.
It is also important for people to meet face to face in my experience and a good chance to sit down with Alex to discuss collaboration opportunities generally.
David Shaw went over to Consensus in New York for similar reasons and spent time with Alex from NEM Foundation and Nate from Tech Bureau along with 40+ other private meetings to help spread awareness of NEM Ventures and NEM in general. Several of those meetings are feeding into and strengthening the strategic partnerships noted above.
That is about all I can think of for now, watch this space for a few more announcements coming soon…
New Investment Release
New Investment Alert (3rd Portfolio Company): Ample
New Investment Alert (4th Portfolio company): IODLT