Two small-cap altcoins stood out during the crypto market’s recovery on Tuesday – Ren (REN) and IHT Real Estate Protocol (IHT). The 50% and 180% gains posted by the tokens respectively pushed them into the top hundred cryptocurrencies ranked by market cap.
Yet the recent surge by this pair turns out to be only the tip of a +900% iceberg which has been growing for many months now.
Formerly known as Republic Protocol, Ren aims to merge “blockchain technology with Wall Street infrastructure” . One way the project aims to do this is with the creation of ‘dark pools’ – exchanges with hidden order books where trades can’t be seen by third-parties. The RenEx exchange beta launched in late 2018, and also comes with BTC-ETH (ERC-20) cross-chain trading.
According to the documentation, the focus on privacy isn’t just a marketing ploy. The Ren team believe the world’s financial institutions will be hesitant to get involved in cryptocurrency as long as the current infrastructure exists, noting:
“…a majority of exchanges fail to meet the performance standards and compliance guidelines that investors and funds require.”
According to Bloomberg, most stock market trades take place on dark pools. As for Ren, most of is trading took place on Binance on Tuesday, from where $24 million of the token’s $25 million volume originated.
From the daily low of $0.079374, the value of REN increased fairly steadily across the day, climbing to $0.122463. That marks 54.2% gains for REN, but is chump-change compared to recent growth.
REN is now up 102% for the week; 233% for the month; 355% for the quarter, and 678% since February. All of this appears to have taken place under a veil of secrecy; despite trading on Binance, hardly a peep has been heard about REN in media circles (or at least, my own newsfeed).
Many rumours circulated regarding REN’s 54% pump on the day, but no single fundamental factor can be pinpointed for the surge.
IHT Real Estate Protocol (IHT)
IHT can be summed up as a real estate market hosted on the blockchain. Users seek out accommodation and pay for it without the need for any centralized third-parties. An AirBnB for the blockchain, in essence. The project launched in early 2018, and its 33,333 ETH ICO sold out in 10 minutes.
When trading commenced, IHT got caught up in the altcoin rebound of April 2018, sending it to immediate all-time highs which still stand now. Then, the only way was down, and from a high of $0.23, the value of IHT fell to less than a cent by December.
The project’s Etherscan page shows a token with over 61,000 listed addresses. Many of these could be duplicates, but that’s a relatively large number for a little-known alt that launched in 2018.
IHT pumped 180% on the day, yet no obvious reason screams out from its media channels. As recently as May, IHT was integrated as the “sole agent” of a timeshare resort in Japan. In April, a Deloitte report analyzed IHT’s business model, concluding an industry ripe for disruption, but still dependant on a range of outside factors.
IHT is listed on a small handful of exchanges, with the most prominent among them being Bittrex.
On Tuesday the value of IHT climbed 180%, from $0.043569, up to $0.122408. Unlike Ren on Binance, IHT’s trade volume remained in the low six-figures, at around $350,000.
Today’s growth pales in comparison to the weekly growth of 938%, which saw IHT climb from a price of $0.011786.