The chat app company Telegram has delivered a document to the US Securities and Exchange Commission saying it has raised $850 million from 81 investors before its planned Initial Coin Offering, the Financial Tribune reported.
Telegram plans to use the money for maintaining the mobile messaging app and developing the Telegram Open Network (TON) - “a scalable and flexible Blockchain architecture that consists of a master chain and up to 292 accompanying Blockchains."
Telegram is aiming to develop a series of services alongside its messaging app, including:
- Distributed file storage akin to services like Dropcoin and ICO company Filecoin
- A proxy service for creating decentralized VPN services and TOR-like secure browsing environments based on the blockchain
- Services for decentralized apps, smart contracts and decentralized web browsing experiences
An early version of TON is scheduled for release in Q2 2018 with the Telegram wallet service penciled for the final quarter of the year. Beyond that, its TON services are planned to launch in 2019.
The initial expectation for the pre-sale was to raise $600 million. But Telegram managed to garner massive interest from venture capital firms. The public ICO is expected to go live in March, with a target of $1.15 billion according to Bloomberg, bringing the purported total up to around $2 billion.
Telegram reached 180 million active subscribers in December 2017.