As Telegram again delays the launch of its Telegram Open Network (TON) after missing their April 30 deadline, some key players in the crypto industry don’t want Telegram to launch the coin at all.
Michael Novogratz, CEO of crypto merchant bank, Galaxy Digital, and one of the biggest Bitcoin (BTC) bulls, expressed a sceptical stance to Telegram’s blockchain and crypto project in an April 30 tweet.
Novogratz wants to turn 400 million Telegram users into Bitcoin consumers
According to Novogratz, there is no need to launch either another blockchain network or another cryptocurrency. Novogratz, who is confident that Bitcoin will hit $20,000 by the end of 2020, argues that Telegram should integrate Bitcoin and stablecoins instead of creating the TON and its native token, Gram (GRM).
“Telegram should enable btc and stable coins on their platform. We don’t need another blockchain. We don’t need another crypto. They have an awesome community of messaging users. Turn them into consumers now.”
Novogratz, a major Bitcoin bull, has invested in a number of cryptocurrency projects, including Cosmos (ATOM). However, the crypto enthusiast reportedly missed out on Telegram’s token sale, failing to get into later funding rounds.
Often referred to as one of the favorite messengers in the crypto community, Telegram could apparently bring a massive amount of exposure to Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies. On April 24, the encrypted messaging app hit 400 million monthly users. This is a significant surge from the app’s 300 million monthly users in 2019. According to the firm, at least 1.5 million new users sign up for Telegram per day.
Telegram has been developing its crypto project since 2017
However, instead of introducing popular cryptos like Bitcoin, Telegram chose to work on its own cryptocurrency and blockchain. Telegram’s TON network and Gram token have been in development since 2017. Telegram’s crypto initiative subsequently raised about $1.7 billion in two private initial coin offerings in 2018.
Telegram was originally planning to launch the TON network in October 2019. However, the initiative has still not launched. Telegram has been in legal battle with the United States’ Securities Exchange Commission (SEC) since the conclusion of their coin offering. According to the SEC, Telegram violated securities laws by conducting its $1.7 billion token sale in 2018.
With their legal disputes still unresolved, Telegram founder and CEO, Pavel Durov, reportedly offered investors an immediate 72% refund, or 110% in 12 months.
As reported by Cointelegraph, TON’s validators are still able to launch the network independently from Telegram, regardless of the regulatory issues.