The Big Deal is a project from the Foundation that aims to involve companies and developers, especially from Asia, into IOTA. These goals will be achieved by giving key companies in the field of IoT a relevant amount of IOTA tokens below market price. They will then contribute towards IOTA with their developers, resources, knowledge and media coverage.
To avoid speculation, full information has not yet been 100% confirmed and we do not yet know which companies are involved. Nevertheless, this will help IOTA to evolve and gain popularity.
The Big Deal needed 80 Ti in order to get fulfilled (this amount was later lowered to 50 Ti). This amount was raised through donations from community members. Compared to the fundraising for the Foundation, it did take heavy effort to mobilize the community towards the cause, but it is a proud achievement.
Question and Answer with David Sønstebø (This FAW was created before the donation goal was reached)
Q: The original 'big deal' pledged for something in return. Why has this changed?
A: On this question I will get straight to the point, the ‘deal’ was always meant to be about the other party getting a significant portion of iotas so that they have a real incentive to make their iotas valuable by helping the ecosystem grow. The ROI on the sale would be negligible, as that is not what it is about. This is a partnership. So the reason it “changed” is that it is way easier for both parties to do this without financial trade components for obvious legal and logistic reasons. The tiny amount of ROI on the sale itself is not worth the tons of additional work that would bring.
Q: 83Ti is ~3% of all IOTA, will there be some sort of legal lock-up period where they cannot be sold?
A: This is definitely part of the negotiation, no party will get any of these iotas without enforced obligation of carrying out their promised effort and dedication. I would not even entertain this if I was not confident they will deliver, and I base this confidence on their track record and empirical evidence of their ability to deliver.
Q: Is it a big "deal" or a big donate? Deal implies they (the investors) will buy this amount of IOTA for a price I expect to be below market price. Can any approximation be given for what price they will pay or how much (in %) the price will be under market-rate?
A: We never called it ‘Big Deal’, it was just a name that emerged out of the community, but it definitely brings home the point I made about why we can’t mention these things publicly because people get too obsessed with semantic terms involved and lose sight of the bigger picture. It’s a “deal” in the sense that they will give something in return, namely help IOTA’s adoption and growth, it’s not a monetary deal. The price they will be buying at is symbolic so it is irrelevant. In short: the lower the price the larger their incentive.
Q: How much Ti is the Foundation donating to the big deal?
A: Hopefully none, IOTA needs a strong foundation for longevity.
Q: Have we re-contacted the parties being mentioned (the investors) to see whether we can negotiate a lower allocation since the significant price rise?
A: It’s an ongoing dialog, but naturally if they don’t have a significant incentive they will not spend a lot of time on IOTA, these are very busy and influential individuals who got tons of other things lined up.
Q: What is the estimated size in % of my total IOTA that needs to be donated to achieve the donation target?
A: It’s rational to assume that not everyone will donate to this effort, that is just inevitable, meaning that in order to reach the full 3% goal you should donate more than 3% of your stack if you want to increase the probability of the goal being reached.
Q: What risks are these investors (referring to the investors the BigDeal is about) taking, if the big deal is just a ‚donation' for them?
A: It’s not a donation to them, it’s compensation for collaboration. This is the way of business. Imagine IOTA as a the equivalent of a start-up in need of key employees. If you want to get good employees you need to compensate them. The risk is their wasted time, reputation and lack of potential profit.
Q: How will big deal impact presence/liquidity in North America?
A: Impossible to say. This is also one of those things where people get extremely hung up and start speculating, so like I said from day one: I refrain from sharing any speculative details. IOTA Is about the real world, not hypothetical speculation.
Q: Can you give a run down of the types of benefits funding the big deal will provide?
A: For sure, so the first and most obvious thing is that these are very well known actors in this space so automatically it gives a lot of legitimacy to the IOTA platform and turns a lot of eyes onto IOTA right away if such a collaboration is announced. In the long term it means unlocking a lot of key doors to the asian tech and crypto market and media, as well as liquid VC capital into projects and start-ups built on top of IOTA, which is the single most important thing for IOTA’s long-term success. Without significant projects on top of IOTA, IOTA is ‘just’ a revolutionary technology waiting to be cloned. Having the ‘big deal players’ involved mean that the most important members of IOTA’s community I.E. those making projects, have access to resources to continue these projects, which in turn makes the IOTA network THE public tangle ledger of choice for others as well, it’s all about the networking aggregate effect.
Q: We understand that at least one group is in Asia. How will they help us expand in Asia?
A: This has already been answered in part, but primarily open the doors to businesses that will explore using IOTA, media, exchanges, liquidity of market and by associating bring asian investors and developers into the IOTA ecosystem. While we already have some great asian community members who are helping with this, it cannot be stressed enough how important it is to have these influential, well-known key players vouching for a western project there.
Q: For the other non-Asian groups - are there specific areas of the world where they are focused and, if or if not, what will they be helping us achieve?
A: Yes, primarily Europe and North America, these are well known in the blockchain space and a brand name with access to lots of companies and capital that is required for IOTA going forward. I cannot say anything specific for a few reasons that I have already mentioned ad nauseam over the past 4-5 months, the overall reason being that I do not want false speculation and rumor spreading. I have done everything I can to keep IOTA as clean and rooted in reality and removed from the usual speculative hype nonsense of crypto and will continue to do so, and also because the negotiation is not done yet. I wish this would’ve come together months ago so we could be further along in the process, but the community not having decided yet has made this impossible.