IEO – Initial Exchange Offering

The crypto-industry is witnessing the rise of IEOs in response to the need for alternative project financing methods. An IEO is a token sale where a crypto-exchange facilitates the sale on the issuer’s behalf, rather than the issuer conducting the sale itself.

In an Initial Coin Offering (ICO), the investor sends the funds directly to the token issuer. Alternatively, in an IEO the buyer creates an account with the exchange hosting the offering and sends the funds there. The buyer then receives the tokens from the exchange itself. Therefore, the exchange acts as the middleman between the token issuer and the investors.

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An IEO offers a number of advantages, such as:

  • Tapping into the user base of the hosting exchange
  • Immediate liquidity for the token
  • Requires a lower marketing budget
  • Gives added confidence to potential buyers since the exchange screens the project before permitting the launching of the IEO
  • There is added security as the exchange also carries out its own KYC/AML checks on the buyers
  • Buyers can pay for tokens in all the different currencies (fiat and altcoins) accepted by the exchange
  • Eventually listing the token on the hosting exchange will be a natural next step

A Maltese entity launching an IEO is also an Issuer under the VFA Act if the tokens classify as VFAs. In this case, the issuer shall comply with the requirements under the VFA Act.

Our team at E&S Group is able to assist in launching an IEO and ensuring full compliance with the VFA Act. Contact us for more information!


"According to our experience, E&S Consultancy team is made up of well-trained and skilled professionals who are always there to satisfy your business needs with reference to Maltase law. Their work is well organized and carried out in a precise and timely manner. I look forward to continuing my cooperation with E&S Consultancy."

Giorgio Crotta & Marco Compagnino - FIDINAM & Partners

Key Contacts


Dr. Christian Ellul

Christian completed his Doctorate in Law in 2005 furthering his studies with an Adv. LL.M. in International Taxation from the University of Leiden, in the Netherlands. Christian has worked as a tax advisor for a Big 4 Audit firm in Malta as well as a reputable local corporate service provider. In 2009, together with Karl Schranz, he set up another Corporate Services Provider in Malta, before leaving to set up E&S Consultancy in 2010. Christian currently sits on the board of all of the companies within the E&S Group and his competences include Malta direct and indirect taxation, international tax structuring, taxation of tokens, cryptocurrencies, ICOs, trusts, corporate and company law and related legal advice.

Christian is fluent in English, German and Maltese.

Phone:+356 2010 3020


Dr. Mariella Baldacchino

While retaining her responsibility for the corporate and legal team within the firm, Mariella sits on the Board of E&S Consultancy Ltd and RES Malta Ltd and is also responsible for Client Relations Management. She read law at the University of Malta in 2005 and finalised a Master in ‘Diritto Privato Europeo’ at the University of La Sapienza Rome in 2006. In 2006 she joined a tax firm in Malta, whereby she was responsible for a varied international based client portfolio, which developed her experience on efficient tax planning, corporate law matters and client relations. In 2011, she took a senior role within a major audit firm heading the Legal Team. Her responsibilities were managing and supervising the legal team, as well as assisting with legal expertise and ad hoc problem-solving. Mariella joined E&S Group in 2016 as Senior Manager for the Corporate and Legal Department.

Mariella is fluent in English, Italian and Maltese.

Phone:+356 2010 3020


Karl Schranz

An accountant by profession, Karl spent 10 years working for a reputable audit firm in various audit roles before joining JP Morgan Chase in London in 2005, specifically working in Credit Hybrid Derivatives. He then returned to Malta to head the corporate finance arm of a local audit firm. In 2009, together with Christian, he was one of the founding members of a Corporate Services Provider in Malta, leaving to set up E&S Consultancy in 2010. Karl heads E&S’ ICO and Tokenomics department, however, his competences include advising and assisting in all MFSA licensing processes, accountancy, Token structuring, iGaming, and all aspects of corporate finance.

Karl is fluent in English, Italian, Maltese.

Phone:+356 2010 3020

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