Analysis of ICO EpigenCare
EpigenCare is a platform for personalized skincare providing personalized skincare solutions via individual epigenetic analysis of DNA and scientific matching algorithm. One of the main features of this project is an at-home DNA test for true optimization of skincare products for the consumer. This test detects the unique epigenetic profile of one’s skin as well as the active and functional ingredients of popular skincare products that could epigenetically impact him or her. Key indicators that are epigenetically tested include aging, elasticity, moisture, DNA damage, cell regeneration, sensitivity, oxidation, and pigmentation. Using next-generation sequencing against a proprietary panel of genes, a report is generated with smart recommendations of products that are matched to the unique epigenetic profile of the consumer based on the products’ ingredients and their impact to the tested skin quality indicators.
Thus, consumers have the opportunity to choose the best products for skin care. And skincare companies including retailers and manufacturers can access consumer data through ECARE in order to target consumers at new or existing products as a personalized solution through the epigenetic matching algorithm.
No personally identifiable information is stored, except by association of an alphanumeric transaction hash ID. And consumers know that their data is being used/sold directly for their own benefit.
The product is very interesting and can be in demand in the market of skincare products. This kind of technology is needed for both consumers and producers/retailers of skincare products.
Epigenetic-based Skincare Test was developed in the 4th quarter of 2017. Full Skincare Test launch to the public will take place in 4Q2018. Further development of the project is planned until the end of 2019.
The economic model of the platform is as follows.
Requestors can buy customized user data that fulfills their desired skin segment (e.g., aging, firmness & elasticity, moisture retention, DNA damage & repair, cell regeneration, sensitivity response, oxidation & antioxidation, and pigmentation) and general segment (e.g., age, ethnicity, geographical location, dietary habits, lifestyle activeness, etc.). Price of the data is automatically calculated based on supply and demand of the requested segment. Consumers that fall within the segments are automatically compensated in ECARE, which can be used to subsidize future tests since skin is epigenetically dynamic.
Two types of tokens are available:
- ECARE is a non-investible utility token that is purchased by consumers to be spent on EpigenCare's skincare tests, and by skincare companies to be spent to advertise their products through EpigenCare's recommendation engine.
- EPIC is an investible security token that is available as an investment offering under Regulation D 506(c) and Regulation S exemptions. Subsequently, EPIC should be qualified to be traded on an SEC-compliant exchange (e.g., registered Alternate Trading System, or ATS) by mid 2019, subject to the regulatory landscape at that time.
EPIC holders also obtain the following rights:
- Conversion to Equity Option;
- Revenue Sharing.
The business plan looks quite simple, clear and elaborated.
EpigenCare will operate on the global market, with their initial target demographic as the high-spending segment in the United States. Consumers in this segment spend between $400 to $2,000 USD on skincare products per year, and are more inclined to pay a premium for skincare-related offerings. Subsequent tests are to be subsidized by EPIC tokens to facilitate a recurring business model as well as to continue to sell recommendation slots to companies.
Once the team has accumulated sufficient epigenetic skin profile data, they will deploy machine learning to combine epigenetic database and mobile application generated photos of one's skin, which will significantly increase available recommendation advertisement inventory to be sold to companies.
EpigenCare team is aiming to capture 5% of the 30 million high spending US segment with 2 skincare tests per year, to achieve $1 billion USD in annual revenue no later than the ten-year mark. They have the following assumptions and forecasts.
- Consumers spend $150-$300 per skincare test;
- Companies spend about $10 per targeted consumer.
- $675 million: Sell 2 tests at $225 each to 5% of 30 million users annually (30 million users x 5% x 2 tests x $225)
- $360 million: Sell 12 targeted recommendation slots at $10 each per test profile annually (3 million tests x 12 slots x $10)
The project team sees the marketing strategy quite clear. But there is no information about specific marketing tools that will be used to implement the marketing strategy.
EpigenCare is a project of the company EpigenCare Inc. established in New York, USA. The company was founded in the 2nd quarter of 2017. The project team consists of 5 people. The founder of the project has experience both in biotechnology and in entrepreneurship. Other team members have experience in oncology and pharmacology, epigenetic research, finance, beauty industry, software development and blockchain technology. The project team looks small, but its experience is quite deep and versatile.
The Vision of the Market
The following information is given as an overview of the market.
The 2016 global skincare industry revenue was $ 130 billion USD. By 2023, the industry is expected to grow to over $180 billion. As biotechnology and big data computing continue to advance, there is a noticeable trend of increasing demand and consumer willingness to pay a premium for personalized skincare products. In a 2014 survey at least 45% of adults expressed interest in a scientific-based test for personalized skincare and would even prefer this option versus traditional pseudo-personalization such as online questionnaires or recommendations by department store salespersons.
In general, the founders of the project have an idea of the market state and its trends. But now is 2018, and the data doesn't look very relevant. In addition, nothing is said about competitors in this area.
Understanding of the Target Audience
The founders of the project see the high-spending segment in the United States as an initial target audience. Consumers in this segment spend between $400 to $2,000 USD on skincare products per year, and are more likely to pay for premium skincare-related offers.
As soon as a sufficient number of consumers are attracted, their data will be offered to companies that are willing to spend about $10 per targeted consumer.
It can be concluded that the founders of the project understand their target audience quite well.
The founders of the project see its advantages in the following:
- Innovative approach to skincare industry: a tangible product strategy(scientifically-grounded skincare test);
- Ensuring data privacy through the blockchain. Consumers now know for certain of this data is being sold and used for their own direct benefit;
- Companies will target data segments with personalized products;
- EPIC security tokens are the direct investment into the valuable, core business mechanism of the company.
Indeed, these advantages distinguish the project from existing approaches in the skincare industry and distinguish the project from most ICOs. But since we know nothing about the competitors of this project, it is difficult to talk about its competitive advantages.
The strengths of the project:
- Own scientific developments in the field of skincare;
- Well thought-out concept of the product;
- Clear understanding of the target audience;
- Availability of a market niche for the product.
Weaknesses of the project:
- There is no analysis of competitors;
- Market analysis is very superficial.