I see most of the questions here involve science, but I'd like the ask what stage of the operation are you in?
Looking for investors?
looking for a CEO/CFO?
Do you have an expert or lawyer for all the legal stuff?
I have to say I don't understand what happened with Todd Rider. what really happened there? I'd hate to go into the conspiracy theory mindset but you gotta admit that it's a little odd. the modern, almost futuristic invention of an actual broad spectrum antiviral just faded away? if indeed 'big pharma' killed it, why wouldn't they try the same thing with Vtose? and what are you gonna do if they do?
Kimer Med was founded in Aug 2020, so we're new, and we're doing all of the things that new companies do: fundraising, recruiting, legal, etc, etc.
I'm curious about Rider, as well. We tried to contact him through his Institute, through his old employer, people he used to work with, a bunch of old emails, and so on. No luck.
I haven't seen any evidence that Big Pharma killed DRACO. However, I believe they do have an influence on NIH and similar funding agencies in the USA. We're based in New Zealand, not the US, and we aren't pursuing funding from US gov agencies, so we're somewhat isolated from that.
We're doing our best to make sure VTose doesn't fade away like DRACO did. We're convinced we see a viable path to product; all it takes is a little time and money. 🙂 The public will undoubtedly play an important role here at some stage. We need and welcome your support.
Have you ever considered to use an alternative to VC funding? A new and (from my point of view) relative promising trend are DAOs, Distributed Autonomous Organisations based on blockchain technology. They provide a new sort of openess, transparency and fairness which could make it easier to attract funding and to attract the best people to participate in such a venture. With a good design (and we still see a lot of experimentation here) you can create compelling incentives for both. A DAO which solves such an important and far reaching medical problem could quickly become very popular if done correctly.
We are constantly considering alternatives to VC funding. 🙂
I hadn't heard of DAOs before you mentioned them, but I looked them up. Interesting idea. We are generally big fans of crypto and blockchain in general, and Ethereum in particular. Based on what I read, it sounds like the idea is that investors in a DAO would vote to determine how capital is spent. Does that sound right? If so, it's hard to imagine how that would work for a biotechnology-oriented project like this, which requires considerable technical skill, knowledge and depth at each turn.
There is no general rule on who should be able to vote on what issues. Currently many DAOs are used to invest into blockchain infrastructure and applications. Here it makes sense to encourage various ideas to be tried. Some DAO frame works like e.g. Moloch DAO are optimized for that sort of funding and voting. But there is no general rule. Other frameworks give you a lot more freedom to tailor the functionality to what a project needs.
One general idea is to align all interested parties, e.g. the management, researchers, marketers and investors by using a token (or multiple tokens) which represent the value of the project. The big art is to distribute the tokens such that everyone gets a fair part and is incentivized to do its best to advance the project. Such tokens usually get listed on respective exchanges. There exist many and you can even do the listing on your own on a distributed, fully automated exchange (DEX). Everybody can "invest" by buying the token and it will have some value from day one. This value could be huge if the story is very good and the DAO is perceived as a fair construct.
It makes sense to define from the beginning how the tokens should be brought to life and distributed. You have any freedom to define who is making which decisions. But of course getting these decisions right is important for the success or failure of the DAO. The only general rule usualy is that a majority of token holders can change everything. This almost never happens in a functioning DAO but serves as a means to recover from a dead end. And even than everybody who does not agree might sell its tokens and leave or fork the project into an almost identical one and continue with the people going with him. That sounds chaotic but in practice it is a reasonable path to take in case of unsolvable differences and it brings a healthy competition for the best solutions. But usually this does not happen easily because most people are convinced that pooling all forces into one DAO guarantees the fastest progress.
Whether a committee steers the DAO and makes all the spending decisions is up to the basic design of the DAO. For your project this could make the most sense.
I think there are a few DAOs in existence that could supply funding in return for recognition. In fact crypto currency communities as a whole have funded all sorts of things just to be seen as a community that is made up of charitable people.
But it does not make much sense to take any money from a research company and put it into a DAO or for a public company to create a DAO to receive charitable funds that are intended to fund the company when people could just donate directly to the company without the additional complication of a DAO.
There are cases where it might be a good idea. For instance if there is an ongoing need for governance functions to operate some blockchain service (Maker DAO comes to mind) or if the thing being funded is something that would be shut down if it where a charity or business (arguably blockchains themselves are DAOs that fall in this category)
I think simply allowing people to donate in crypto like they do with dollars would be a low cost and low risk approach if paired with a payment provider so that you don't have to keep cryptocurrency secure. Although as with allowing people to donate to get a particular virus prioritized, allowing people to donate their favorite crypto and keeping it as crypto until it reaches some threshold of value could be good marketing if paired with recognition of that currencies community for its charitable nature.
You could even jump on the NFT train selling a variety of badges that are specific to the virus they want research prioritized for.
There is a risk though that becoming a company that is part biotech research part crypto hype train is going to suffer in the inevitable crypto bear market and legal is going to have to work overtime making sure that you don't promise things to contributors that are not legal for a company to promise.
@Rick I used to work in US pharma research. Funding for CDC approval takes millions of dollars and 9 years on average (7 at best) to prove initial safety and efficacy. Then 90% of drugs get pulled for negative long term data. So given the amount of money needed this is beyond what crowdfunding can provide if you want the USA to approve it (prob at least $10 million needed).
Hi. I added that a few months back, it was a straightforward way to add crypto donations. The main downside are the limited choice of cryptos accepted, currently. I'm happy to look at other, more comprehensive solutions if you or others know of one.
I think coinbase is fine, its relatively easy for individuals holding lesser known altcoins to trade for something available.
On a kind of related note SENS.org recently raised 25 million USD in crypto by being a "sacrifice address" for an airdrop of a new (and in my opinion kind of shady) altcoin. I'm really not sure how that will play out since they where marketing the donation as tax deductible but participants where given tokens as a reward. There are charities like that where you get say a pin and the idea of getting an NFT as a badge for donations is equivalent but when the participants are highly profit motivated it does seem to blur the line between a charity and a token sale.