NEW YORK, NY - MAY 11: Founder and CEO of Kik Ted Livingston speaks onstage during TechCrunch Disrupt NY 2016 at Brooklyn Cruise Terminal on May 11, 2016 in New York City. (Photo by Noam Galai/Getty Images for TechCrunch)Noam Galai — Getty Images for TechCrunch
Livingston's billion-dollar chat app, Kik, first became popular with teens who liked not having to tie usernames to phone numbers. Last year Livingston, a longtime Bitcoin-phile, jumped on the “initial coin offering” bandwagon and held a token sale that raised about $100 million. Now he intends to form an alliance with other similarly positioned startups around his self-minted crypto tokens, dubbed Kin. His gambit aims to land on a non-advertising based business model that can compete against—or at least co-exist with—that 800-pound gorilla named Facebook.
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