The owner-operator of the St. Regis Aspen Resort has concluded its security token offering (STO), raising $18 million in the first equity ICO hosted on the Indiegogo platform.
Asset management firm Elevated Returns, the owner of St. Regis Aspen, on Tuesday announced that accredited investors had purchased all $18 million worth of Aspen Coins made available through the sale, bringing Indiegogo’s first security token ICO to a successful conclusion.
Unlike utility token ICO tokens, which (at least purportedly) serve as coupons for a product or service, security tokens represent investment contracts. In this case, each Aspen Coin represents a share in a single-asset real estate investment trust (REIT) that holds the $18 million in St. Regis Aspen equity made available through the STO/ICO. Since securities offerings are regulated by the SEC, the sale was restricted to accredited buyers.
“The Aspen Digital closing not only represents a new coin on the market that is asset-backed, it also establishes a blueprint for future real estate tokenization,” said Jason Kirschenbaum, director at Elevated Returns. “The future of real estate investing is one that provides global exposure, transparency, public access and liquidity, all of which are elements that can be delivered through blockchain technology.”
The token, which was built to the ERC-20 token standard, was made available on Indiegogo through a partnership with Templum Markets LLC, a FINRA and SEC-registered operator. While Aspen Coins can technically be held in any ethereum wallet, investors seeking to sell their security tokens must do so through Templum’s alternative trading system (ATS) to comply with federal securities regulations.
In an interview with CCN earlier this year, Indiegogo co-founder Slava Rubin said that expanding into cryptocurrency-based crowdfunding is a “natural extension” of the firm’s business.
“We predict a rise in the potential and demand for tokenized securities, because digital ownership on the blockchain provides so many advantages over legacy investments, and tech-savvy investors are seeing the value proposition in real time. This addition to our business is just a natural extension of our vision for a crowd-financed world.”
Indiegogo had previously hosted a utility token ICO in partnership with licensed broker-dealer MicroVentures. However, months after that sale was concluded, MicroVentures abruptly canceled the sale and returned funds to contributors, citing regulatory concerns.