€ 200,000 funded from the € 150,000 - € 200,000 target
Minimum investment per investor € 1,000
Commited investors 57
Lead investor: Asse Sauga
7.5 - 10% of the company on offer
Campaign period November 9-30, 2020.
First investing round reached its target already on the 19th of November. If you are still interested in investing with us, please submit your application and we will add you to the waiting list. If somebody should cancel their application, we will contact you.
Thank you all investors for their trust!
Aufort is an Estonian company with almost 7 years’ experience in selling investment gold and silver in Estonia. With the goal of expanding globally, Aufort is developing a transparent and easy-to-use platform, which allows gold to be used in several different ways. Aufort's vision is to become the next generation gold bank.
Problem and solution
Buying and owning physical investment gold bars can be expensive and troublesome. When buying gold bars and coins, in addition to the world market price and service fee, you also have to pay for the production and shipping. In addition, the production and shipping of gold bars is not an environmentally friendly process. Physical gold bars need to be stored, which can involve both additional costs and security risks. Currently, gold does not have a wider use case: it does not generate passive income like shares or real estate, it is difficult to take out a loan backed by gold, and it is not possible to use gold as money, for example, to pay at a shop.
The solution is digital gold 100% backed by physical investment gold. Aufort is developing a transparent and easy-to-use platform that offers a transparent and easy-to-use solution to all the above problems.
Aufort's solution provides gold with several important use cases: buying, selling and redemption, gold transfers, gold loans and deposits, and gold payments. Investment gold can be bought and sold both digitally and physically. Gold in digital form can be redeemed as a physical bar from as little as 1 gram. Gold in digital form can be sent cost-effectively around the world via a blockchain in just a few minutes. It is also possible to take out a loan secured by gold and deposit gold to earn interest in addition to capital growth. As a final step, Aufort also plans to offer a debit card which will allow the use of gold as a means of payment.
Every gram of digital gold sold by Aufort is physically stored in various LBMA-certified manufacturers' vaults around the world. The LBMA, or London Bullion Market Association, is the most important and recognized organization in the world of investment gold. Their primary function is to set and monitor quality and safety requirements - you can read more about LBMA HERE if you wish.
In cooperation with gold refiners, Aufort ensures the protection of customers' gold against all risks (except force majeure). In addition, Aufort insures the service offered to mitigate additional risks. The storage fee for gold is 0.005% per day of the world market price of gold and this cost is borne by Aufort - storage is free for the customer. The vaults are audited by a third party (internationally recognized auditors), and the results are published quarterly on Aufort's website. Technologically, digital gold exists in the Ethereum blockchain, which provides additional security and transparency. The customer can check at any time how much digital gold has been circulated. When compared to the results of the audit, it can be verified that all gold in circulation is also physically present. For Aufort, trustworthiness is the most important aspect.
Watch a short product video explaining Aufort's new digital product solution (the trading and transfer of gold):
Aufort combines gold with blockchain technology and an eCommerce platform. This solution is more transparent and easier-to-use – a one-click solution that even grandma can use. Aufort is known to be the first company in the world to offer digital gold through an eCommerce platform - find out more HERE.
It is possible to make transactions with e-gold conveniently and easily:
Aufort is an online platform that offers solutions directly to end-users (B2C) and businesses (B2B). Customers can use Aufort's products and services directly on the Aufort website. An affiliate program has also been developed, in the framework of which it is planned to start cooperating with several larger online companies, through which customers will use the Aufort platform. Learn more about the partnership program HERE. In addition, Aufort plans to start working with various cryptocurrency trading platforms (e.g. Coinbase, Kraken, Binance), through which an even larger number of advanced customers will be reached.
The main source of income is the service fee from e-gold buy/sell transactions, the additional sources of income are interest on gold-backed loans and service fees from gold payments.
The demand for gold is growing rapidly. If the first quarter of this year is compared with the first quarter of the previous year, the demand for gold has increased from 300.5 tons to 539.6 tons, or 79.56%. Demand for gold in digital form has increased by as much as 594% over the same period, from 42.9 tonnes to 298 tonnes. If you are interested, you can read more here.
At the end of 2019, Deutsche Bank Research published an interesting report for the next decade (Konzept, Imagine 2030), which read as follows:
"...if current trends continue, there could be 200 million blockchain wallet users in 2030."
"...demand for alternative currencies, from gold to crypto, could soar."
Recently, there has been a great deal of uncertainty about the future of the world economy. Countries have printed and issued more currency this year than has been the case in decades. In addition, the recent global outbreak of COVID-19 is contributing to the situation. Historically, uncertain times have brought people back to gold, which has been a secure financial instrument for centuries.
The global gold market cap is around 10 trillion euros, of which investment gold is around 5.7 trillion. Aufort plans to expand into Europe (Germany) and Africa (South Africa, Ghana, Nigeria) over the next year. Germany is the country with the largest gold market in Europe. Many people in Africa do not have a bank account but have a smartphone, so digital money is important and useful to them. Many African countries have high inflation rates, against which many people seek protection. Africa is also a very gold-orientated continent, as much of the world's gold is mined there.
There are several digital gold service providers on the market, but none of them solves most of the above problems comprehensively and transparently. The two largest digital gold service providers using blockchain technology are Tether Gold and PAX Gold. With less than a year in business, their current market cap is already about 150 million euros. Compared to their competitors, Aufort's product/service is better in many ways...
|Tether Gold||PAX Gold||Aufort|
|Customer onboarding||Complicated||Complicated||Quick and easy|
|Buying system||Exchange / deposit||Exchange / deposit||eCommerce|
|Gold loans and deposits||No||Deposits||Loans and deposits|
|Min service fee||from ca €200||from ca €30||from €2|
|Physical bar redemption||from 13.37 kg||from 13.37 kg||from 1 g|
|Main market||USA||USA||Europe ja Africa|
Almost 7 years of experience in selling physical investment gold and silver in Estonia
In total, sold more than 109,000 grams of gold and silver
200%+ growth: 2019 turnover approx. € 108,000 €, 2020 turnover January-September approx. € 344,000
Licenses: purchase and wholesale of precious metals and stones (FVV000117) and virtual currency license (FVT000038)
Direct contract with LBMA-certified gold refinery IGR
Tehnopol startup incubator program (accelerator) from September 2020
Bert-Ken Raudberg, founder and CEO, firstname.lastname@example.org, LinkedIn
Erik Karu, founder and COO, email@example.com, LinkedIn
Jano Järvelaid, shareholder and CPO, firstname.lastname@example.org, LinkedIn
Julia Mozberg, shareholder and CTO, email@example.com, LinkedIn
Gert Laasme, shareholder and CMO, firstname.lastname@example.org, LinkedIn
Ivo Remmelg, president of EstBAN, angel investor (Estonia), LinkedIn
Ivar Siimar, founder of EstBAN, angel investor (Estonia), LinkedIn
Thomas Padovani, entrepreneur (France), LinkedIn
Hardik Khatri, entrepreneur (India), LinkedIn
Erik Simons, entrepreneur (USA), LinkedIn
The use of money and schedule
The aim of the first capital raising round is to raise 150,000 - 200,000 euros. With this budget, we can bring the product to the market, and have a budget for marketing activities. For 150,000 euros, the planned use of the investment is as follows:
1) Platform and product development: 53%
2) Labor costs: 33%
3) Sales and marketing: 14%
Turnover in 2019 was 108,000 euros
Turnover in 2020 (January to September) 335,000 euros
The estimated turnover in 2020 is 400,000 euros
The estimated turnover in 2021 is 2 million euros
The estimated turnover in 2022 is 9.6 million euros
The estimated turnover in 2023 is 49.5 million euros
Goals, profit and exit
Aufort's vision is to become the next generation gold bank. Implementing this ambitious plan will require several rounds of financing to develop the product and actively expand into foreign markets. This round is the first and one of the preparatory steps for the next rounds. Each capital raising round significantly increases the value of the company. As a result, Aufort does not plan to distribute profits over the next two years - all revenue will be reinvested in active expansion and growth, which will increase the value of the company. In 2022, Aufort plans to allow shares to be traded publicly on a reliable platform, such as Funderbeam. If desired, this will give investors participating in the first round the opportunity to sell their shares (i.e. make an exit).
After the second capital raising round, the estimated value of the company will be approximately 4 million euros, and after the third round, approximately 15 million euros. For example, if everything goes according to plan, then for an investment of 1,000 euros, the expected value of the investment is 2,000 euros after the second round of financing and 7,500 euros after the third round. Please be sure to read the risk warning below.
The first round of financing aims to raise a minimum of 150,000 euros, for which 7.5% of the company is offered. With this investment, the product can enter the market and perform several marketing activities. The maximum amount of the first-round investment is € 200,000, for which 10% of the company is on offer. With a larger investment, more funds are left for sales and marketing activities.
The investment is made through an SPV (single/special purpose vehicle), which acquires a stake in Aufort (SMI Group OÜ). The SPV is a special legal entity created for a specific activity - a company that concentrates the investments on co-financing. If the investor (both natural and legal person) became a shareholder in the company, he would now receive a share in the SPV created for that purpose instead of a direct shareholding, the sole purpose of which is to acquire a shareholding in the investing company and to successfully manage it. The created SPV has no other business or purpose. A loan agreement is concluded between the investor (borrower) and the SPV (loanee), on the basis of which the investment is transferred to the SPV account.
The minimum investment per investor is 1,000 euros, which means that the number of investors participating in the first round can be a maximum of 200. It is possible to invest until 30.11.2020 or until 200,000 euros is reached. Investments are calculated based on submitted applications, signed agreements and the receipt of payments to the SPV account.
This round of funding is closed and intended only for a small group (insiders). Only Aufort’s shareholders, shareholder’s friends and family members, as well as Aufort's customers and partners (as of 01.11.2020), can participate in the first round.
The leading investor in the first round of financing is Asse Sauga, who is Estonian leading blockchain expert, entrepreneur, author, trainer, consultant and coach. Asse has unique experience more than 15 years combined with IT, blockchain tech and psychology. Among many other things, Asse is a former IT development lead at the Estonian Ministry of Finance, blockchain banking expert with the LHV Bank, and founder of the Estonian Cryptocurrency Association.
The SPV created for the investment is "Aufort Invest OÜ", registry code 16095103, address Viru väljak 2, Tallinn 10111, the members of the management board of which are Bert-Ken Raudberg, representative of Aufort and Asse Sauga, representative of the investors. To invest, please send an application HERE, after which we will send the investor an agreement on the basis of which the investor will transfer the amount to be invested to the account of Aufort Invest OÜ.
Added value for investors
Investors participating in the first round will have the opportunity to buy Aufort products at discounted prices. The discount consists of two parts: a 30% discount on the service fee + € 1 additional discount on each plate or coin.
Risks and their mitigation
Risks arising from regulation and law: Aufort, legally named the SMI Group OÜ, is a company registered in Estonia and based on Estonian capital, which is subject to local and European legislation. In March 2020, a new directive on the EU Virtual Currency Services Act was adopted, which made it significantly more specific and clearer and more specific for the service provider. The members of Aufort’s Management Board are aware of the applicable legislation and are responsible for the correct implementation of the law. When expanding into new markets outside the European Union, where there is a need or obligation to register a local company, the laws and regulations there may restrict the supply of some of the planned products/services. Consequently, local legislation must be thoroughly clarified and, if necessary, opportunities must be found to offer the product/service in a more suitable form.
Risk of price fluctuations due to the world market price of gold: when selling physical investment gold bars, a certain amount of gold must be kept in stock at all times. As the price of gold on the world market is constantly changing, and should it fall, Aufort may incur losses on some transactions. To mitigate this risk, Aufort plans to start cooperating abroad with larger local precious metal companies, through which it will issue physical products to customers (including the physical conversion of a digital product). In this way, Aufort does not have to keep physical products in its warehouse and must deal with the assembly, shipping, etc. of the products. In the case of a digital product, Aufort fixes the price of gold with the refinery several times a day, which also minimizes the risk of price fluctuations.
Competition risk: Competitors are developing a solution with similar functionality that could jeopardise Aufort's growth and success. Aufort aims to be the most flexible, transparent and innovative company that allows its product to be used by as many people as possible (both ordinary citizens and investors) and in different regions (both poorer and wealthier) around the world. This approach makes it more difficult for other companies to compete, as they usually focus on only one customer segment.
IT and technological risk: The development of a digital investment gold product currently uses the world's latest, most secure and fastest web development platform hosted by one of the world's most secure cloud hosting providers. The information system software is regularly updated, backed up systematically and monitored on an ongoing basis. For the sake of transparency, the Ethereum blockchain (ERC20) is used as the database. Ethereum is currently the most widespread and fastest growing blockchain in the world.
Supplier risk: Aufort has a cooperation agreement with the LBMA-certified gold refiner IGR. In order not to be dependent on just one partner, we are planning to cooperate with a few other major European precious metal wholesalers. As digital gold is stored with our suppliers, there is a risk that something may happen to the supplier and that the gold cannot be obtained - this risk is mitigated in two ways: multiple suppliers and insurance.
Risk of a loss of electricity: The probability that electricity will be lost permanently or for a long time all over the world is low. In the case of shorter regional power outages, it is important to use technologies that are not related to only one specific location (e.g. Estonia) or equipment. That's why Aufort uses decentralized blockchain technology, which is located (synchronously) around the world in devices from different regions.
If you feel that you want to be a part of Aufort's success story, but still want to think about it, get more information or meet the company's founders and team, register for the introductory event taking place on November 18 from 18:00 to 20:00 at the Hilton Tallinn Park. The event will be held in Estonian.
If you have any additional questions, please write to email@example.com
Company name: SMI Group OÜ
Register code: 12517949
VAT number: EE101657307
Aaddress: Viru väljak 2, Tallinn 10111, Estonia
Phone number: +37256902890