Vladimir Nikitin: Thank you for joining us today, Nikolay. I know that you came to the sphere of blockchain from the economic field, in which you own many enterprises and have achieved great success. You have also been awarded with the Self-Made, Super TOP, Enterprise of the Year awards. Could you tell us a bit more in detail?
Nikolay Shkilev: Hello everybody! Yes, I do really have 20 years of experience with the ownership and management of various enterprises in different spheres, including the IT sphere. After all these years I have gained good authority not only among employees and partners, but also in many different business groups, so therefore I am often invited to various business ceremonies and rewardings.
Vladimir Nikitin: I know that you have opened “Private Business Club” more than 10 years ago. I know that it’s a group which many successful businessmen join. I am also aware that you act as a mentor for a lot of successful projects there, and have been doing that for some time now. So what has made you interested in Blockchain industry?
Nikolay Shkilev: It’s simple, really. Advanced technologies and I were always on the same page, but as a successful entrepreneur and investor I received thousands of offers which either cost nothing or were doomed. Without chances of development and escalating. At some point it just became boring, and I wished to go beyond one country, one region and to see perspective projects from all over the world. Without any borders, without policy, without sanctions. And the era the Blockchain and ICO granted me instant access to most perspective projects and startups in the World. It is really cool and was definitely worth it!
Vladimir Nikitin: How many projects do you look through every day?
Nikolay Shkilev: Earlier I was the one looking for projects to join, but now I am found by creators from around the globe. Every day I receive about 40-50 requests where I am asked to look attentively through their project, to rate it, to become their advisor, etc. Apart from hundreds of letters with spam (Laughs, Author’s note). Of course, I have to refuse to the majority for various reasons. At the same time, though, I take quite a few ICO projects under my advisement, but only those in which I can see some real prospects and potential.
Vladimir Nikitin: Could you go into more detail here, please? What do you pay attention to in the first place? I think it it would be interesting for all ICO project founders to hear.
Nikolay Shkilev: First of all I look at their team, their experience. On the relevance of the idea. On the degree of the product’s readiness. On how much the team is willing to spend on marketing, advertising, special events and etc. On their White Paper (WP), website, whether they are listed on ICOBench, whether they have passed KYC verification. On their presentability. A whole set of criteria.
Even though I can easily help projects with their presentability, give them solidity, strengthen their weak parts, help with WP, website, attract strong advisors, I simply can’t improve the project’s idea and change its team. Many projects seek my help, even though they don’t have an idea, a solid team, or money for promoting the product. There is nothing I can do but brush these projects off.
Vladimir Nikitin: I understand, I face such problems everyday myself. And how do you answer those who are only ready to pay a percentage for the investors?
Nikolay Shkilev: In that I can only see trickery. It means that the project just has no money for development of the product and they want to get enriched quickly by sitting on their advisors’ shoulders. But, of course, that never happens. I myself, as an investor, have put several million dollars into various projects over the past few years. And I perfectly understand the mentality of other investors. Nobody will invest money into empty projects, where there is no advertising, rapid growth, strong team and strong advisors. Therefore, given current conditions, if the company wants to carry out a successful ICO, it shall think beforehand of the budget on advertising, marketing, branding, and specialists. The trick with percentage doesn’t work any more, or is ineffective.
Vladimir Nikitin: And what are the prospects for ICO events in general for 2018?
Nikolay Shkilev: It depends. Those who thoroughly approach the project, team, marketing and the budget will survive. The time of poorly made projects is coming to an end. Great deal of money will be raised only by those, whose projects meet each aforementioned criterion.
Vladimir Nikitin: I agree. And what about the general downfall of cryptocurrency in 2018? What perspectives do you see there?
Nikolay Shkilev: As I say to all of my close friends: “Don’t panic, but also don’t invest your last penny into cryptocurrency!”
Actually, the tendency of cryptocurrencies to fall can be easily explained, and here are several factors which influence it:
a) Toughening of regulation from the USA and SEC.
b) Ban on the advertisement of cryptocurrencies and ICOs on the largest platforms, such as Google and Facebook
- c) It took off too fast in 2017. Everybody understands, that it was an unjustified powerful pump.
d) A lot of “sharks” from the production sector and stock market came to the crypto-market, and they knew that it is impossible to enter it while it’s already high (laughs, Authors note)
- e) The U.S. Government and World financial Elites understand that they are potentially threatened by cryptocurrency and therefore by any means will block the development of this process.
Vladimir Nikitin: How long do you think it will take?
Nikolay Shkilev: Well, there will always be spikes in the wheels, but I think that the market will adapt to these difficulties within 2 months and will then start growing, and both fresh blood and new users along with new investments will catch up to everything. The world will find a way out, as eternal downfalls simply cannot happen.
Vladimir Nikitin: Nikolay, many thanks to you for such fair and irrefragable answers.
Nikolay Shkilev: You’re most welcome. I wish everyone good luck!
Nikolay Shkilev https://www.linkedin.com/in/icoadvisor/ (LinkedIn)
Vladimir Nikitin https://www.linkedin.com/in/icoadv/ (LinkedIn)