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SEC Is Set to Monitor Digital Coin Sales as Market Tops $2 Billion

  • ParagonCoin hopes to raise $60 million in ICO on Sept. 15
  • Startup going newfangled route because ‘it’s the future’
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Bitcoin Falls as Chinese Exchange Cracks Down

Jessica VerSteeg answered the phone and apologized for her voice. She was hoarse following a series of interviews to promote her marijuana startup, Paragon, which hopes to raise $60 million starting Friday to fund its plan to become the WeWork of pot.

The former model turned chief executive officer skipped the traditional fundraising route. Instead of an initial public offering of shares, VerSteeg is going with a very 2017 idea: an initial coin offering, selling digital tokens dubbed ParagonCoin that cannabis firms or nonprofits would use to pay rent at the company’s planned co-working spaces, to be located where marijuana is legal. A successful deal will add to more than $2 billion raised by companies this year through ICOs, according to financial analysts at Autonomous Research LLC.