Modern Finance Chain (MFX), a project that looked to reward merchants and customers for transacting using its payment solution, appears to have gone dark — leading many to suspect that an exit scam is currently afoot.
Currently, Modern Finance Chain is still trading on the Switcheo exchange but is currently trading at $0.000419 — equivalent to less than 1 percent of its initial coin offering (ICO) price. However, the token has seen practically zero trade volume in the last month and like the project itself appears to be completely dead.
Modern Finance Chain recently took the peculiar move of completely closing down its Telegram community — instead opting to open an announcement-only channel which has a single post from January 6, 2019. The Modern Finance Chain Medium, however, hasn’t been updated since October 2018, with the last update simply announcing the addition of Binance Coin (BNB) and Credits (CS) as payment methods.
The situation has gotten so bad that spurned MFX investors and supports have taken to Telegram to vent their frustration and provide a way to disseminate updates relating to the project. As it stands, the nearly two-month-old group has close to 60 members — with most members feeling confused and betrayed after being left in the dark over three months now.
Terrible communication is not in-and-of-itself a guaranteed indicator that the project has exit scammed, since poor communication after raising funds is, unfortunately, more common than many would like. Efforts may shift from focusing on investor outreach to product development. However, complete and utter silence is almost never a good sign.
In July last year, Modern Finance Chain partnered with Credits, a Singapore-based blockchain platform for DApps. As of writing, Credits have not officially canceled its partnership with MFX — though community managers for the project have indicated that the partnership is no longer in effect, citing the project’s lack of communication as the cause.
According to its most recent public announcement, Modern Finance Chain raised 2,700 ETH during its pre-ICO, at a time when Ethereum (ETH) was worth between $500 and $800 — making the total raised somewhere around $1.35 million at the minimum.
Despite this, since the soft cap is listed at 4,500 ETH, it stands to reason that investors should have been refunded when the project failed to reach its minimum funding goal. However, the last (and only) announcement on the MFX Telegram channel states that the project is continuing its development, with the message reading as follows:
As previously announced, we successfully closed our token sale raising 2700 ETH and meeting our soft cap goal. With 2018 being the year of the bear, we consider this a success and are excited to continue with our development.
We find that this information conflicts with an earlier FAQ supplied on the Modern Finance Chain Medium, which clearly states that funds will be locked up in the smart contract, pending a refund request from the investor:
In the unlikely event MF Chain does not achieve its soft cap, ETH sent to the smart contract will remained locked until users request a refund transaction.
Several members in the MF Chain community have speculated that this promise was shelved after the project spent all of its money on failed marketing attempts, essentially leaving investors high and dry as far as refunds are concerned.
According to its now redacted roadmap, the MF Chain mainnet and masternodes were scheduled for Q1 2019. However, with very little in the way of development, and no apparent direction, it appears that this was just another false promise.
The Hunt Begins
When attempting to check the domain registration information, we find that the mfchain.com domain was registered in November 2016 under the registrar Cloudflare — but opted to maintain whois privacy, restricting information relating to who registered the domain. The domain was recently renewed until 2020, which is sadly perhaps the only tenable clue that the project still has long-term plans.
Modern Finance Chain did recently renovate the website, however — though this appears to be thrown together from a template, rather than being a custom design, and remains incomplete. Curiously, the new website design has removed the team page that was present on the previous site version and still retains the fake stock reviews supplied with the template.
According to users and our own tests, the new website appears to be almost completely non-functional, with the registration button apparently disabled. It has reportedly been this way since the new website launched in February.
Notably, two leading members behind the project — Craig Neil and Jayson Rellis — both failed a KYC request from ICObench. That being said, both Craig Neil and Jayson Rellis do both appear to be genuinely related to the project and have extensive careers in marketing and startups that would be difficult to fake.
We find it curious how Modern Finance Chain would enforce KYC for all its investors but did not offer the same courtesy in return — perhaps there was something to hide?
Coincidently, both Neil and Rellis have been largely silent since the MF Chain Telegram community vanished — and have ignored what appears to be dozens of MF Chain investors that have tried to reach out to the pair.
Checking Neil’s Twitter account, he has been inactive since October 2018 — approximately the same time when Modern Finance Chain began closing down communication with investors. Rellis, on-the-other-hand, made a brief appearance after being contacted on LinkedIn, citing the drastic decrease in ETH value as the reason behind the lack of updates and delayed development.
Concordantly, the MF Chain GitHub has been dormant for the better part of a year, with its last commit being made back in August 2018 — indicating little to no development is going on behind the scenes.
As of yet, it remains unclear how the project will move forward but we don’t recommend holding your breath while waiting for updates. Of course, we at BeInCrypto invite MF Chain officials to open a dialogue about the current status of the project and put investors’ worries to ease.
Do you have any more information on the project? Did Modern Finance Chain exit scam, or is this simply the result of an exhausted budget and resources stretched too thin? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below!
Images courtesy of Shutterstock.