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ICOs: dream for startups, nightmare for regulators

Millions raised in seconds, but questionable practices rife

Funds raised globally through ICOs soared in the April-July period. (Photo by Ken Kobayashi)

TOKYO -- Raising $35 million in 30 seconds with minimal disclosure sounds like something that could only be a racket.

But startups across the world have been turning to initial coin offerings, a sort of initial public offering involving the use of a cryptocurrency, to put together those kinds of sums that quickly and it is perfectly legal -- in theory at least.

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