On March 21, Numerai, which is a startup that offers both a prediction market and a hedge fund, announced in a tweet that they had received $11 million through an initial coin offering (ICO). The American-based company indicated that they would use the funds to complete a project called Erasure. At the end of 2016, the company launched Numeraire, which is a blockchain-based network that uses cryptographic tokens. These tokens give anonymous data scientists an incentive to create predictive models. Numeraire tokens are based on Ethereum and those who hold them can use them to make predictions on the company's platform. Richard Craib, who is the founder of Numerai, stated that the company would be using the ICO funds specifically to hire engineers in support of Erasure, which is a decentralized version of their marketplace. The company announced Erasure in October of last year and stated that it would launch sometime this year. The platform will allow users to sell predictions to investment funds operating on its public network. It will do this using the peer-to-peer InterPlanetary File System, and it will further let users link their cryptocurrency wallets directly to the marketplace. Currently, most prediction models on Numerai are focused on traditional assets. But Craib indicated that with Erasure people will be able to make predictions on any kind of asset. Two companies were responsible for leading the ICO. This includes Placeholder, which is a venture capital and private equity firm, and Paradigm, which is a cryptocurrency investment firm. Fred Ehrsam, who co-founded Coinbase, also founded Paradigm. The news of the ICO drove the price of Numeraire tokens higher. It is currently trading at $5.77, which is a 19% increase for the day. At the moment, 5 digital currency exchanges support the token, including Bittrex, DDEX, IDEX, Poloniex and UPbit, and the currency has a market value of $7.7 million. In other token news, Binance Launchpad sold $4 million worth of Celer Network tokens, and they did so in less than 20 minutes. Binance Launchpad is the token platform of the Binance cryptocurrency exchange, which is one of the largest in the world.
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