According to a document signed by Telegram CEO Pavel Durov and filed with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) this week, the Telegram ICO has amassed a staggering $850 million in its pre-sale phase.
The figure, raised entirely from venture capital firms, exceeds the $600 million originally forecast for this round of funding.
Expansion of Existing Services
It is the highest amount accumulated from a pre-sale to date and dwarfs the closest comparisons from previous completed ICOs such as by Filecoin ($257 million) and Tezos ($232 million).
As reported last month, the money raised will go towards the development of the TON blockchain and is described in the filing as “purchase agreements for cryptocurrency.”
Telegram, a popular platform within the crypto community, is also looking to use the funds to widen its range of services to include VPN solutions, file storage and peer-to-peer micropayment transactions.
Questions now arise of how this increase in initial funding will effect the proposed public sale scheduled to begin in March. Signs are, however, that the public sale is proceeding and will be heavily oversubscribed.
A minimal viable product (MVP) of the TON blockchain is planned in Q2 of 2018, with a wallet service pencilled in for the end of the year. Full service is expected in 2019.