BitAir wants to create a token for travel and tourism payment. If there has ever been a textbook case of a bad business plan, BitAir may be it. Their stated goal is to: “enter the traditional online travel & tourism payment market to offer fiat users/ travellers a wider choice of absolutely cheap and reliable payment solutions.” The largest problem with changing the payment system in the travel market is, it doesn’t need fixed. The whitepaper provides no information on what problem their business will solve, or how they plan to niche into a market. They’re launching the coin on a Hail Mary, but let’s get a lesson in what not to do by going through the report card.
Solves a Unique Problem – E
Fiat currency works perfectly fine to pay for travel. Never once has anyone said “there has to be a better way to exchange monies for my next vacation.” Fiat payment is cheap and reliable. In fact, fiat is better because it is not as volatile. Even if it weren’t better, bitcoin or another cryptocurrency would provide a better solution than a new undeveloped token.
Market Size – C
The travel market is huge, and BitAir spends a lot of time talking about its size in their whitepaper. BitAir plans to approach large travel sites and asking them to use their coin, but what is the benefit to the travel sites? They also mention various possibilities as if their business plan was put together in 10 minutes at a coffee shop. They might go direct to the consumer, or partner with larger established sites, or maybe sell taxi services in an app. I cannot gauge market size when they cannot define their product.
Customers are Willing & Able to Pay – D
This category analysis closely follows Market Size; without a product there are no customers. Exploring their idea to partner with travel sites also falls short. Large travel sites get no great benefit in a travel coin and there is no coin micro-economy that would benefit the travel business. Sure, you can make an argument that transaction fees could be lower for travel companies, but individuals would have to acquire the token first, which is not a time nor money free process for many. If lower transaction costs is the largest incentive to large travel sites, why would they not use a more established coin economy like Ethereum? There is no incentive to adopt this system by the end consumer, or the businesses who transact travel.
Leadership Experience – D+
The leadership of BitAir is questionable. Based on the executive team’s background (Oxford, US & Australian educations), it is concerning to find multiple english mistakes in their whitepaper. The CEO’s -Tommy Barron previous experience was as a Business Strategy Consultant, a great title for starting a new business. However, he has no prior experience and zero recommendations from former colleagues or friends. He apparently graduated Oxford in 2002, but in his profile picture he appears to be 25. Zero of the leadership has an endorsement or recommendation in their profile. It is skeptical for company leaders to all be missing a profile segment when LinkedIn has self-reported at least 16.5 million fake profiles. If nobody will speak to their skills, why should anyone trust them? Another strange pattern is their profile pictures. They all appear the be poorly cut in photoshop and pasted on a grey background. Who collaborates on their LinkedIn profiles?
Differentiated Product/Service – E
The grade says it all: it doesn’t seem like the team were trying to provide a differentiated product. If the CEO’s previous experience was business strategy, you would expect he would provide better guidance for the company’s products.
Transparency – B
BitAir does show an impressive effort to be transparent. They have included copies of their incorporation documents in their whitepaper. They have registered business names in Australia, Indonesia & The Philippines as Asia Pacific Travel Company & similar names. BitAir has provided more information than most other ICOs, but not enough information to cover the strange LinkedIn profiles.
Competition – High
Competition in the travel space is high and so is the payment space. Investors are not sure if they are going to attack the payment market or attempt to market their own travel services app.
Currently Revenue Generating – No
BitAir has no verifiable source of revenue.
The largest risk would be putting any amount of money or coin into this ICO. At best, BitAir is a start-up company without a vision. Worst, this ICO is a scam looking to profit from suckers during the ICO frenzy. BitAir may be a legitimate effort, but their market materials raise a lot of questions and leave a lot to be desired.
|Solves a Unique Problem||E|
|Size of Market||C|
|Customers are Willing & Able to Pay||D|
|Currently Revenue Generating||No|