A throwback to what we’ve achieved since the LGO token ICO
On February 1st 2018, we gathered 3,600 BTC during the LGO token sale, which is still to date the largest ICO ever done in France. More than 9,000 people from 50 countries joined us in our mission to create a fair, secure and transparent ecosystem for institutions to trade digital assets.
Two years after, LGO is a key player in the international digital asset ecosystem, and the leading institutional Bitcoin exchange in Europe.
What we’ve built
At the heart of our value proposition is our technology, a bridge between the traditional institutional capital markets world and the cryptography and blockchain ecosystem.
On the one hand, our team has built a technology which is one of the most performant and resilient in the market. As described by our deputy CTO JB in this article , we have built a high performance, high availability and high resilience platform, on which our clients can trade with the same standards as in the equities or FX space.
On the other hand, we’ve described very early on in our whitepaper what we called at the time the Legolas Protocol: a public proof sequencer that allows us to demonstrate the transparency of all the trading activity which happens on the LGO platform. This was at the time a complete innovation in the Bitcoin world, which was (and to a certain extent still is) riddled with fake data and opaque intermediaries.
We have built this protocol and integrated it to our institutional exchange. The details of the implementation can be found on the LGO Node, as well as the auditable proof of our activity. LGO is today the only Bitcoin exchange that can prove the complete transparency of trading data.
A first product
After 1 year of development, we launched the platform in March 2019 on the Bitcoin asset class. Ten months later, in December 2019, we became Europe’s largest Bitcoin trading platform for institutional investors. We have 40 clients from more than 15 countries — including 7 of the 10 largest liquidity providers in the market — which have traded $400m-equivalent of Bitcoin on the platform. Our clients are aligned with our approach and believe in our business: we have not lost a single account since going live and most of our clients have increased their share of trading with us.
The fact that we rely heavily on client feedback to build our platform coupled with our unparalleled client service makes LGO one of the best products in the spot exchange space.
These first months of operations have allowed us to start buying back and burning LGO tokens on the open market. To date, more than 500,000 tokens have been destroyed.
Last but not least, we’ve been lucky to create an amazing team of people working at LGO, between France and the US.
Our long term objective is very ambitious, extremely rewarding but also hard to reach. We believe that the key to our success lies in the team and the work ethic that we have developed for the past two and a half years. The LGO team is made up of 23 professionals with an average work experience of over 10 years. We have a very distinct product development and business methodology which is based on 2 axioms:
- We are first-principled thinkers: we do not take the current solution for granted and try and understand the problems we’re solving to build the best solution.
- We are settlers, not pioneers: we launch our products where there is already a demand. Said otherwise, we like not to take the market risk, and deploy our platform where we know there is already a market.
As a testament to the team’s hard work, we became in January 2020 members of the French Tech 120, which gathers the 120 most promising companies in France.
Our vision for the next years
Over the next few years, we will develop LGO along two different axis:
- Expansion to new services: financing, OTC execution, derivatives
- Deployment of our platform on new assets: altcoins, stablecoins, tokenized assets
The opportunity is much bigger than the Bitcoins spot market. We have the firm conviction that technology can help build better financial markets: more scalable, more transparent and in the end more efficient.
As a matter of fact, institutional capital markets represent several trillions of dollars in value and generate billions per year for investment banks. And very paradoxically, these same banks have recently struggled to generate the same profits they used to — while holding their grip on one of the largest industries in the world. Regulatory costs and fines, and high operational costs are crippling investment banks’ bottom line for a very precise reason: their business structures are antiquated and not scalable.
We believe there is a solution to these issues built on three principles:
- Automation: of all processes through strict but modifiable business logic.
- Digitization: of the whole chain of value transfer with new technologies like blockchain and tokenization.
- Openness: through the use of external APIs, that clients can use to automate their business or that third-party operators can use to build their own product.
While the above might be a long term prediction when it comes to traditional assets, it is a reality in the cryptocurrency world. Over the past two years, we have demonstrated the benefits of those 3 principles on the Bitcoin market:
- Digitization simplifies our operations, allowing us to be one of the most scalable and leanest companies in our industry.
- Automation allows us to spend much more time with our clients to understand their business logic and build new features accordingly.
- Openness creates opportunity for other companies to build their product on our standards.
The logical next steps for us are to increase our offering on Bitcoin and start expanding to other tokenized assets. To this extent, we will launch several new products in 2020, including OTC execution and digital asset financing.
We will also expand our platform to new assets, starting with our very own LGO token in the next few weeks. We envision 2020 as being a key year for stablecoins, and are positioning ourselves to help accompany the market in this direction.
While we’ve done a lot over the past two years, we still have a lot to achieve ! We’d like to thank all of our token holders that have supported us from the start, as well as our clients that trust us with their business on a daily basis.
Happy birthday LGO !
The LGO Team
LGO is the leading Bitcoin spot exchange for institutions. Live since April 2019, we are trusted by
more than 40 institutional counterparties across 15 countries. With a boutique approach we provide
a suite of fully customizable services, best in class technology, and deep liquidity.