Food. A simple 4 letter word that most of us take for granted but as this year’s reduced global harvest yields have clearly shown, we should not.
Agricultural land ownership that leads to food security has been a stable investment over the last fifty years and as the demand on resources intensifies, the value of productive fields and pastures will likely increase further.
The same applies to land used for mining minerals. As citizens awaken to the reality of the central banking system and faith becomes further eroded in fiat currencies, traditional precious metals could gain in value.
As demonstrated with other asset-backed tokens, be they linked to an actual commodity or fiat currency, blockchain technology is capable of valorising and tokenising a tangible product and conferring ownership to an individual holder.
Although still in its infancy, property has already been bought and sold on the blockchain and linked directly to a national land registry so official records match those of the ecosystem that facilitated the trade.
More efficient, cheaper and secure than traditional transfer of ownership, blockchain-based land registration is seen by many as a natural progression.
FieldCoin are building a specific blockchain-based marketplace with an aim to connect landowners with investors to ease the initial process of acquiring or renting land as well as funding agribusinesses ventures.
This accessibility is designed to extend to solving management issues by enabling full ownership and control over production to such a degree that it will be possible to trace all the levels of inputs and outputs – – such as chemicals applied to the soil in question, for instance.
Although the land on offer will initially be limited to European locations, the project is planned to roll out to function at a global level.
The stability of land as an asset class is what the team believe will eventually lead to a more stable token in price terms, as the world of cryptocurrencies experiments with various approaches for stabilising prices.
It is imagined that tokens will function more as shares do on a fair and open stock market, where assets in normal market conditions generally rise and fall individually based on their perceived underlying value.
Fieldcoin’s business model is also geared to providing an added element of market capitalisation stability even during crypto bear markets.
The team have provided three documents for potential contributors to the project. A standard 50 page white paper, a one-pager brief introduction and a no-nonsense, no-graphics 21 page legal paper.
Producing a separate legal guide is a useful strategy as it can help prevent the explanatory white paper from getting bogged down in legal technicalities.
However, whilst the publications serve their intended purpose, they are functional rather than engaging documents. Nevertheless, all of the key information is there for those who seek it.
Three pillars of trade form the backbone of the platform: initial land acquisition, subsequent peer-to-peer exchanges and a crowdfunding e-marketplace where users can raise funds for agricultural projects.
There will be two tokens on the Fieldcoin platform which itself is grounded on the Ethereum blockchain.
The FLC utility token is available in the initial sale and will power the ecosystem while the LANDS token is a unique asset assigned to, and backed by, a particular piece of land.
FLC is a universal ERC-20 token that can be traded on external exchanges after the FCO as well as providing access to purchasing land through the LANDS token which is based on the ERC-721 standard .
Fieldcoin have included several mechanisms to protect investors from market volatility and ensure that FLC holders will be able to buy tokens at “a certain rate that is fixed and increasing depending on the amount of the assets in the Eco-system.”
If everyday during a two month period, the price of the Fieldcoin marketcap falls below a threshold ratio of 80% compared to the ecosystems asset value, holders will be credited for future purchases.
External auditors will be employed to regularly ascertain that all-important value of assets.
This fixed rate will also work in reverse so the more the FLC token value increases on exchanges, the weaker this in-platform trade-back becomes and so price stability is maintained.
A benefit of this system is that if prices do rise, a small percentage of the increase is sold for fiat, which is then used to buy additional land for the Fieldcoin platform which in turn raises the threshold guarantee of the Trade Back program.
This trade back program means investors can exchange their tokens for a guaranteed minimum price, calculated as a percentage of purchase price. Projected examples of which can be found within their white paper.
On-boarding agricultural projects for crowdfunding on the platform will be overseen by a specialised department that will subject applications to a three stage selection process.
Those that pass the criteria will need to provide sureties to Fieldcoin’s legal department in terms of fixed assets such as machinery or land which in turn is held as a partial guarantee for the lender.
Once the project is accepted, token holders will have the option of contributing on a fractional-ownership basis and will be rewarded according to the terms of the project.
As with buying or renting land on a full ownership basis within the platform on a peer-to-peer basis, a detailed data sheet with the necessary descriptions will be provided to help formulate decisions and if the sale is completed, a real estate property ownership certificate is created.
Fieldcoin will also offer land management services where owners can delegate them to optimise output, administer legal requirements and process any rental income on 60-40% split in favour of the owner.
Multilingual Marc Couzic is the founder and CEO of Fieldcoin and his academic record includes masters degrees in both Agro-business and International Trade. Vocationally, he has been involved for several years with consultancy work in these particular areas as well as cryptocurrency projects and trading ventures.
While Couzic’s background appears a fertile grounding for this project, the remainder of the core team are often harder to evaluate as they are either relatively fresh from university or have large swathes of freelance work in their LinkedIn profiles.
Rayane Hocine, at 22 years of age, is arguably a rising star in his field, having served as Chief Digital Marketing Officer at both Humaniq and Sureemit.
Damien de Riberolles arguably stands out amongst the project’s so-called Assistance team, with fifteen years experience under his belt in land and agricultural management.
An additional tranche of ‘Contributors’, including widely respected environmental writer Elizabeth Waddington, also form part of the team.
The team have gone to some length to rename their initial coin offering to Field Coin Offering (FCO) because they believe the contemporary ICO model is flawed and they are keen to offer a variance on the concept to indicate that the project’s native token is linked to an asset with real, underlying value.
The token on offer, FLC, is an ERC-20 utility token that will be used to power the platform’s ecosystem.
At the time of writing this review, FLC has not been assigned a price for an individual token in the FCO.
The FCO has a soft cap target of $3 million for 600 million tokens from a total supply of a billion tokens.
This equates to 60% of the total being available in the FCO with a further 10% earmarked as a reserve pool.
No set end date has been given for the FCO and it will continue at least until the soft cap has been reached. All unsold tokens will be burned.
Should the project reach the soft cap but not raise $5 million in funding, the proof of concept and trade back system elements will be postponed and the token reserves will be used to grow the ecosystem until the implementation of those features can be achieved.
In any event, the major part of the funds raised will go towards Fieldcoin Ltd acquiring land to be traded on the platform.
Agricultural Land and Blockchain Research
Project released to the public
November 26th 2018
Beta Platform release
First land tokenised
February 5th 2019
FCO (Field Coin Offering) begins
August 5th 2019
First Agribusiness Crowdfunding
Phone apps release
First coordination of blockchain-based registry systems
First Fieldcoin’s Eco-sysem Valorised land sold
As the team have identified, agricultural land is a proven stable asset with huge upside potential.
Within this setting, Fieldcoin have shown themselves to be an ambitious project with a number of engaging compartments operating under the overall umbrella of land ownership.
By incorporating crowdfunding and fractional-ownership for agribusinesses alongside the outright purchase and rental of land, Fieldcoin have added an extra dimension that opens new avenues for the need and potential uptake of the platform.
In rebranding the launch as an FCO instead of an ICO, Fieldcoin are showing they are offering a new model, one that comes with some form of growing market cap threshold guarantee. With a unique Trade Back feature, that should remove some of the volatility associated with cryptocurrencies, the attraction of the underlying stable asset becomes even more attractive.
The company have a strong figure head in Marc Couzic and his record demonstrates the necessary background to drive the project forward. There are no major red flags here that we can identify. Because of the need for land acquisition, the level of success of the pre and public sales for this venture will determine how fast the platform is rolled out. The stated softcap is modest enough and even the next stage target of $5 million is achievable given overall favourable market conditions.
In the current political and financial landscape those conditions cannot be assured though and the timing of the sales could prove crucial in establishing the company.
The current geopolitical context emphasises the need for an innovative approach to land ownership and sustainable food production. All of which means Fieldcoin may some fertile from which to germinate and grow.
Ratings Score Methodology: a weighted average across three scores: Concept (10% weight), Blockchain Fit (30% weight), Execution (60% weight).
Disclaimer: Please note that all ICO reviews on ICOExaminer are non-technical assessments, in some instances are sponsored, and are very often sentiment-based and should not - under any circumstances - be construed as professional investment advice.