Taking a peek at peaq

The Maltese government has been working to ensure that the benefits of the crypto industry are distributed more evenly throughout the population.

A blockchain token co-founded by Maltese tech entrepreneur Max Thake has raised €20 million on CoinList ̶ the Initial Coin Offering (ICO) platform. That figure pertains to just six per cent of the total tokens available on the peaq network – a global, decentralised network built to power applications in industries such as mobility, energy, and telecommunications. It gives the entire network a staggering €333.3 million valuation.

“The world is waking up to the potential of real-world applications on the blockchain,” said Mr Thake in a social media post celebrating the achievement. The token offering’s success is the largest on CoinList in the last two years and reflects the fact that subscriptions to peaq were almost double the total offer.

Earlier this year, peaq was also able to raise €15 million from venture capital firms in a pre-launch funding round. At the time, Mr Thake said he and his co-founders Leonard Dorlöchter and Till Wendler are on a mission “to power a global infrastructure revolution”.

Peaq founders (from left) Leonard Dorlöchter, Max Thake, and Till Wendler. Photo: Peaq

Last year, peaq registered a major success when a Vienna-based car-sharing company placed over 100 of its Teslas on the blockchain-powered network. By tokenising the cars through peaq, which is designed to ease the integration of Internet of Things into the blockchain, the Viennese car-sharing firm ELOOP decentralised ownership and allowed the community to earn income and benefit from the operation of its assets.

Now instead of the €20 made from a car-sharing journey going to one company, as is traditionally the case, the €20 is split by the owners of the tokens. You can apply this to one Tesla, or to a fleet of hundreds and one day thousands of Teslas.

The rise of blockchain and cryptocurrencies in the last decade has revolutionised the way we think about money and the way we do business. With the potential for faster, cheaper, and more secure transactions, blockchain technology has become an attractive option for businesses and individuals looking to conduct transactions online.

Malta’s rise as a global crypto and blockchain hub can be traced back to 2018, when the Maltese government passed three pieces of legislation aimed at establishing a legal framework for blockchain and cryptocurrencies. These laws created a regulatory framework for ICOs, crypto exchanges, and other crypto-related businesses, making Malta one of the most crypto-friendly countries in the world.

The country’s rapid expansion in the sector led to concerns about regulatory oversight and the potential for fraud and other criminal activity. In fact, some people started referring to the situation as a sort of “Wild West”. Though there were some infamous incidents, this was hardly surprising in a rapidly-expanding industry with many aspects still in uncharted territory.

The Wild West accusation came from the usual quarters bent on wreaking the maximum damage possible on the country and their hated opponents for political purposes. Thank God the damage was rather limited, as both the Malta Digital Innovation Authority and the Malta Financial Services Authority worked to tighten regulations and ensure that companies operating in Malta’s crypto sector comply with the law and reducing the potential for fraud and other criminal activity.

The growth of the two industries in Malta has been significant, bringing new job opportunities and diversification to the country’s economy. Additionally, many other job opportunities were created in related businesses or businesses providing services to them. This has helped to create a more diverse and dynamic economy in Malta, reducing the country’s dependence on traditional industries.

However, this growth has not been without its challenges. Many of the jobs are highly specialised and require specific skills and expertise, meaning that the benefits have largely been concentrated in the hands of a small group of highly skilled workers, rather than being spread across the population as a whole. Also, the demand for housing and other essential services increased, leading to rising prices and making it more difficult for many Maltese residents to afford a comfortable standard of living.

To address these challenges, the Maltese government has been working to ensure that the benefits of the crypto industry are distributed more evenly throughout the population. This has included investments in education and training to help Maltese workers develop the skills and expertise needed to work in the industry. The government has also been working to address the shortage of affordable housing on the island, with a range of initiatives aimed at increasing the supply of housing and making it more affordable.

Main illustration via CryptoSlate. Image includes combined content which may include AI-generated content.

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