In 2017 the price of bitcoin reached parity with gold (by ounce) which grabbed the attention of gold investors around the world. With the current crypto mania there has been a surge in interest with the concept of gold-backed cryptocurrencies.
A brief history of digital gold currency
The idea of a gold digital currency has always had an appeal for those looking for an alternative payment system. Not long after the internet went mainstream E-Gold emerged as first digital currency backed entirely by gold in 1995. At its peak, millions of people around the world were using this service until it was shut down.
Other attempts to make a digital gold currency were also made, but this was before the age of Bitcoin and blockchain technology.
Now with blockchain technology established as a secure accounting method, and with Bitcoin becoming better known to the general public, a new era of gold-backed cryptocurrency is emerging. There is a proverbial (and literal) gold rush happening now in the crypto world, and even countries are looking to issue their own gold-based cryptocurrency.
The basic concept is certainly compelling. A token or coin is issued that represents a value of gold (for example 1 gram of gold equals 1 coin). The gram of gold is stored by a trusted custodian (preferably third party), and can be traded with other coin holders.
At a minimum the price of the coin will always equal the current gold rate. If the cryptocurrency becomes popular then the price of the coin can potentially increase in value, greater than the value of gold. If the cryptocurrency doesn’t take off then the value remains as the value of the gram of gold. It’s like a built-in stop-loss.
There of course many risks as well. While the blockchain accounts for the coins, accounting for physical stored gold is another matter. When evaluating such tokens look for who actually owns the gold and how it is stored. In this regard our online gold partner BullionVault as a good example of accountable gold storage. When evaluating a gold crypto make sure that you own the gold.
Buy gold with bitcoin
If you are just looking to buy gold with bitcoin, the easiest and safest way is to open an account at Vaultoro. This is a gold vaulting service which allows you to buy and sell gold with bitcoin and other altcoins. The gold is 100% your legal property, and is fully insured in Swiss vaults. Vaultoro is ideal if you prefer to park your crypto gains in gold instead of cashing out into a fiat currency. Read more about Vaultoro.
Gold-Backed Cryptocurrency Directory
This is a current list of gold-backed cryptocurrency. This is a directory and not an editorial endorsement, so research all of the alternatives before investing. Some of the cryptocurrencies listed here don’t detail how they store and account for gold either, so proceed with caution. Any questions regarding each coin should be referred to their social media channel or forum listing.
Since this post was first published there have been new coins added to the list and some are now ready to buy. The list is now sorted in order of availability.
A Pre-ICO (or ICO Pre Sale) is a token sale that is offered before the official ICO campaign or crowdsale goes live. There are fewer tokens offered at this point, and they are often sold at a discount which helps the project pay for the expenses of the launch.
Name: GoldCrypto (AUX)
AuX tokens by GoldCrypto are a cryptocurrency backed by physical gold. Currently, each 750 AuX Tokens will be backed by one ounce of gold (approximately US$1.70 per AuX Token). This gold backing per AuX Token then progressively increases.
GoldCrypto (AUX) Pre-ICO is on until April 30, 2018.
Name: Golden Currency (PGCT)
Golden Currency plans to be first global private currency on blockchain, both paper and electronic, 100% backed by gold. Pre-ICO on on from 16 Apr 2018 to 31 May 2018.
Name: XGold Coin (XGC)
Location: Punta Arenas Building, 13 Floor, Cincuentenari, Coco de Mar 79 East Panama City, Panama.
XGold Coin (XGC) is a gold backed digital crypto-currency option. The price of one XGC Coin at initial pricing is based on a single gram of Gold.
PRE-ICO First Round is on until 10 February 2018 and is offering a Pre-ICO 35% bonus.
Name: GoldMineCoin (GMC)
GoldMineCoin is – as the name suggests – is a coin backed by a gold mine. This crypto-currency is secured by gold deposits in the Magadan Region of the Russian Federation. This set up resembles the exploratory mining companies that frequent the penny stock listings. You have a high risk of not finding gold and potential high reward of hitting a productive gold mine.
Pre-ICO runs until May 2018.
Name: BaselBit (BB3)
Location: Zug, Switzerland.
BaselBit is a crypto currency backed by tangible gold value and silver reserves. The gold BaselBit will be equivalent to one troy ounce of gold while the silver BaselBit will be equivalent to 50 grams of silver (note: 1 troy ounce = 31.1 grams).
Pre-ICO runs from February 7, 2018 to December 31, 2018.
Name: AgAu (?)
Location: Zug, Switzerland.
AgAu gets its name from the symbol for the chemical elements argentum, for silver, and aurum, for gold. AgAu is fully decentralised ownership of cryptocurrencies 100% backed by physical and allocated gold and silver. 1 AgAu Gold token = 1 g of LBMA Gold, and 1 AgAu Silver token = 1 g of LBMA Silver.
Pre-ICO begins on 15 May, 2018.
Initial Coin Offering (ICO)
An Initial Coin Offering (ICO) is how a new cryptocurrency raises money for its startup. A token is given a set rate, and there maybe bonuses for early buyers. It is rare to be able to buy ICO tokens with fiat currency, so you will need a stash of Bitcoin or Ethereum first.
Name: Darico (DRC)
Location: Zug, Switzerland.
Darico is a gold-hedged cryptocurrency investment token backed by gold, bitcoin and ethereum. Each token is comprised of 55% bitcoin, 35% gold, and 10% ether. The gold sits in custodial vaults, and there is an app wallet and a Darico debit card.
The Darico ICO ends on the 30th July 2018.
Gold Bits Coin
Name: Gold Bits Coin (GBeez)
Gold Bits Coin is a gold-backed crypto but the site and White Paper is light on details. It says that each coin is “backed by real gold”, but it doesn’t say how much gold is in each coin, or how it is stored.
Gold Bits Coin ICO is on through to May 2018.
Name: Flashmoni (OZT)
Location: London, UK.
Flashmoni is a blockchain-powered fintech company that offers a physical gold-pegged cryptocurrency, innovative payment solutions and a smart contract-based advertising solution. In addition to using gold to back their tokens, they also plan to raise funds to directly operate mines to “improve miner’s working conditions, their lives and of the communities where they live.”
There are two gold-backed tokens: OZG which is a private token pegged with 24 K gold stored in Dubai’s DMCC Free Zone and in Singapore. 1 OZG = 1 grain of gold (1 grain is approx 0.065 gram). OZT is the public token tradable on crypto exchanges and OZTs core value is 1/20th of the OZG.
The Flashmoni ICO begins on 11 February 2018.
Sudan Gold Coin
Name: Sudan Gold Coin (SGC)
Location: Dubai, U.A.E.
Sudan Gold Coin is a gold mining business with blockchain technologies that offers a fair distribution of the profit. Each token at the beginning will be tied to the 0.05g of gold per token. More gold is added to each token as the gold is physically mined. The mine is located in a study area of over 8000 Km2 in Northern State of Sudan. The Dubai SG mining Co controls 100% of the Sudanese mining company
The ICO begins in Q2, 2018.
Once the ICO is over the token will then become available for public exchange on a set date. There are hundreds of cryptocurrency exchanges, but not all exchanges list all tokens. The token website will list which exchange you can buy and sell at, and you will most likely end up opening accounts at a few different exchanges.
This list is all the gold-backed cryptocurrencies that have gone on to graduate to the open market.
Name: AurumCoin (AU)
Each AurumCoin is backed with 0.75 grams of gold, yet AurumCoin’s par value will always be worth 1 gram of pure gold. When you buy an AurumCoin you buy a digital proof for 1 gram of gold stored and insured in professional high-security gold vaults in Zurich, London, New York, Toronto, Singapore, and Hong Kong.
Name: DigixGlobal (DGX and DGD)
Location: 32 Carpenter Street, Singapore.
DigixGlobal has created two types of Ethereum tokens – each with unique properties. DGX Digix Gold Token represents 1 gram of 99.99% LMBA standard gold, secured in Safehouse vaults. Digix DAO Tokens (DGD) is used to claim quarterly rewards based on the total DGX collected through transaction fees. The DGD value fluctuates based on exchange rates and market forces.
Name: GoldMint (MNTP)
Location: Moscow, Russia.
GoldMint is blockchain based platform which operates with 100% gold-backed cryptoassets, either gold or exchange-traded funds (ETF). The GoldMint platform is built on a private blockchain, based on the Graphene technology. There is no mention of where the gold is stored, or indeed what percentage is physical gold.
Name: HelloGold (HGT)
HelloGold users can buy and store gold which can be converted to a Gold Backed Token (Goldx), which is backed by 1 gram of gold. The gold is held and accounted for in a partnering vault in Singapore, and it is certified as compliant with the Shari’ah Standard on by the World Gold Council.
Name: KaratBank (KBC)
The KaratBank Coin is a blockchain-based cryptocurrency that is linked to physically deposited gold in the form of the so-called CashGold. The idea behind CashGold is to implement small gold bars on a specific paper which partially looks like a bank note. However, instead of mentioning a specific currency amount, the weight of the implemented gold bar is displayed.
Exchanges with KBC
Name: PureGold (PGT and PGG)
Puregold is a payment gateway using Gold backed cryptocurrency. They offer two digital tokens called PGT for transactions; and PGG which is a cryptoasset backed by physical gold.
The company uses physical gold (of 999.9 quality) as its security. Puregold’s gold reserves equal or exceed its circulated amounts of PGG gold-backed tokens. The physical gold is stored by a third party in a decentralized storage unit that Puregold stores investment grade gold, gold jewellery, small ingots (up to 100 grams) and coins.
Puregold is part of Puregold.sg, which is a private mint in Singapore with its own in-house factory producing gold and bars.
Exchanges with PGT
Name: Xaurum (XAUR)
Location: Crystal Palace, BTC City, Ameriška ulica 8, Ljubljana, Slovenia
Xaurum is coined by exchanging the mined value for physical gold, stored as the CommonWealth gold reserves. It was first coined on a PoS Blackcoin blockchain, and has transitioned to Ethereum.
Exchanges with XAUR
Upcoming Exchange Listings
These are the gold-backed cryptocurrencies that have finished their ICO and will soon be listed on exchanges.
Name: AurusGold (AWG)
Location: North Brabant, The Netherlands.
AurusGold is fully-allocated, gold-backed cryptocurrency. The Aurus asset tokenising protocol is used by top European gold traders to tokenise 99.99% LBMA approved, fully audited gold under the AurusGold (AWG) currency.
Available Q2 2018.
Name: OneGram Coin (OGC)
Location: 2E MO17 East Side, DAFZ, Dubai, United Arab Emirates.
Each OneGram Coin (OGC) is backed by one gram of gold and is Sharia-compliant. Gold is held in vaults located within Dubai Airport’s high-security compound, and managed by OneGram’s partner GoldGuard – a Dubai-based gold trading company.
There is a maximum of 12,400,786 OGC available, and unsold coins will be permanently destroyed after the Initial Coin Offering.
OGC will be listed on 1 June 2018.
Name: ANTHEM (AGLD)
Anthem Gold is a cryptocurrency developed by Anthem Vault Inc. Each ANTHEM (AGLD) is backed by one gram of physical gold, securely vaulted with a nonbank operator and fully insured.
Name: GoldBase (ABG)
Location: St Kitts & Nevis
AssetBase offer five different precious metal crypto currencies (gold, silver, platinum, palladium, and rhodium). Unlike some of the other mixed metal tokens, AssetBase has a separate token for each metal. The GoldBase crypto coin (ABG) is equal to 1g of physical gold and is 100% redeemable for 100% physical gold. All gold (and other metals) is vaulted and insured and audited by a third party. To acquire precious metal tokens you will need Prime Donor Tokens (PDT).
Name: BullionCoin (XAAU)
Location: Isle of Man.
Bullioncoin is a gold and silver backed cryptocurency. Gold Bullioncoin (XAAU) is equal to one gram of gold, and silver Bullioncoin (XAAG) is be equal to 50 grams of silver. There is also a Debit MasterCard available which can use your Bullioncoins for every day purchases.
Name: CURRENSEE (CUR)
Location: Dubai, U.A.E.
Currensee a gold-backed crypto currency valued at the current price of 1gm of Gold. The value of the physical gold in the reserve is directly proportionated to track the performance of the coin in the market. The Currensee platform is built on a private blockchain, based on the Ethereum Technology.
Name: Dignity (DIG)
Dignity (DIG) is owned by Arbitrade which has been acquired Cryptobontix. There is no contact address or prolifes listed, so I’ve left it here under indevelopment until further notice.
Here is a more detailed writeup about $UNY / $DIG.
Name: DinarDirham (DNC)
Location: Hong Kong.
DinarDirham was founded in Southeast Asia and is headquartered in Hong Kong. It connects actual gold to crypto tokens on blockchains. DinarDirham doesn’t hold or control gold or DinarCoin or Smart Gold Contract. Instead all gold assets issued in DinarDirham is bridged to the liquidity provider.
Name: GODcoin (GOD)
GODcoin is “the official coin of Christ” and offers gold and silver-backed cryptocurreny. It’s also “endorsed by God the Heavenly Father, and issued by the Messiah, Lord Ra-El.” One gold token (GOD) is worth one ounce of physical gold. One silver token (SOD) is worth one ounce of physical silver.
While looking for information for this I found another GOD coin so I’m not sure what 3-letter code they will use.
Name: Goldbloc (?)
Goldbloc is a gold-backed digital currency and banking platform developed by The Real Asset Company (TRAC), providers of a secure online gold exchange and vaulting services, and Lionsgold (LSE: LION) a London Stock Exchange AIM-listed company focused on gold exploration, production and the retail application of gold.
Name: GoldBlocks (GB)
GoldBlocks is a blockchain based MLM (Multi-Level Marketing) mining site that also has gold-backed something or other. I don’t know how to describe this as the website just says a bunch of buzzwords without clearly describing what it does. It says they “work with various gold trading platforms”, the site is incomplete with broken links. The coin is trading and you can read updates here.
Name: Gold Cryptocurrency (GOLDC)
This gold-based online currency is still in development. There are some updates at github and apparently there was an ICO in August 2017. There are no contact details though which makes this site look dodgy.
Name: IC3 Cubes (IC3)
IC3 Cubes – Mine + Vault + Token – Verified / Insured / Secured 100% Canadian Gold. IC3 Tokens represent the physical weight of vault verified gold, priced on market settlement – day of purchase.
Location: Cossato (BI), Italy.
Karatcoin plans to be a platform to trade gold certificates by tokenizing gold certificates in Ethereum.
Location: Isle of Man.
The Kinesis Currencies will be launched in July 2018. Each Kinesis coin represents physical precious metal allocated on a 1:1 basis. Bullion is purchased simultaneously when a Kinesis coin is minted and each coin has bullion directly allocated to it from the moment of being minted into the kinesis system, for the life of the coin.
Name: Orocrypt (OROC)
Location: Löwenstrasse 28, CH-8021 Zurich, Switzerland.
Orocrypt have 1,112,000 tokens in total, with each gold token representing 30g of LMBA-compliant gold. A total of 45% was offered for sale, and the balance held by founders and for employee incentives. The gold is stored in four locations, with monthly inspections conducted by SGS.
Name: OZcoinGold (OzGLD)
OzGLD is a cryptocurrency that is 100% backed by gold. There is a limit set of 10 million coins for 100,000 ounces of gold. You can buy OzGLD by registering your a free wallet and paying with Ether (ETH).
A press release states that “each 100 OZcoinGold coins is backed by 1/3 gold bullion stored in the Perth Mint and 2/3 gold reserves held by Ozcoin Inc, to be delivered to Perth Mint by March 2022. The verification of the gold certificates is uploaded to the block chain in the name of OZcoin Inc.”
There is no mention on the Perth Mint site, and no physical contact details on the website.
Name: Quintric (?)
Location: Utah, USA.
Quintric combines cryptocurrencies with real gold and silver coins using the Bitshares platform.
For the gold token, “each Quint token constitutes five U.S. gold cents (one 1/1000th of a one-ounce, U.S. legal tender, gold coin) payable on demand in minimum 1,000 token increments for an American Eagle/Buffalo gold coin, bearing a fifty dollar face value.”
The gold coins are stored in a fully audited vault and deliverable upon request. There is no ICO for this project. Instead, a pre-launch promotion is on until the 4th of July, 2018.
Royal Mint Gold
Name: Royal Mint Gold (RMG)
Location: London, England.
The Royal Mint, has teamed up with CME Group (the derivatives marketplace) to offer bullion on the blockchain. Royal Mint Gold (RMG) is real gold, stored in The Royal Mint vault, and traded on a digital trading platform provided by CME Group. It will be available through third party investment intermediaries such as banks and brokers.
Name: X8currency (X8C)
Location: Zug, Switzerland
X8Currency is positioning itself as stable token for crypto investors. X8C is an Ethereum token, 100% backed by a combination of 8 fiat currencies and gold. Each token is represented with assets deposited in bank accounts. Gold is held in physical reserves in the format of gold coins. The percentage of each currency and gold is unclear.
Name: ZenGold (ZGC)
ZenGold is a cryptocurrency is backed by physical gold. Each ZNG token represents 1 gram of 99.99% Gold reserved in Shanghai Gold Exchange Vault.
Closed / Shut Down / Didn’t Meet Funding
Airgead planned to issue tokens baked by Gold, Silver, Platinum, and Palladium.
Name: GramGold (GGT)
Location: United Kingdom
GramGold was a gold exchange, a gold vault, a gold ATM, and a foundation. The Gramgold Token (GGT) is 10% backed by gold. The GramGold ICO was on in March, 2018 and went offline in April, 2018.
Name: Reales (RLS)
Location: Tallinn, Estonia.
Reales coin was a token that combines a basket of precious metal and cryptocurrencies. The breakdown of each token is 10% physical gold, 35% physical silver, 20% Bitcoin, and 20% for ICO’s and alt-coins (total 85%). The remaining 10% was for company’s budget and 5% for operational costs.
An ICO was held in 2018 and didn’t reach their softcap.
How to buy gold-backed cryptocurrency
Before you buy any of the gold-backed cryptocurrencies listed you will need to have a stash of Ethereum or Bitcoin available. If you already have then you can skip to the next section.
If you are buying and selling altcoins on a regular basis then it’s worth getting accounts set up and verified on different exchanges. With the current high demand in trading crypto you may find that some exchanges will take weeks to get set up, so having different options will get you started quicker.
Bitcoin and Ethereum are the two major cryptocurrencies that are used to buy alt-coins on exchanges. For ICO (Initial Coin Offering) purchases Ethereum might be the only payment available if the token is running on Ethereum.
You will end up having accounts at different exchanges as not all exchanges accept fiat currencies, and the ones that do may not trade the coin you want.
Here are some crypto exchanges where you can deposit cash to buy Bitcoin or Ethereum.
Coinbase is the most well known site to buy Bitcoin and Ethereum. They are ideal if you are new and just want to get started quickly. (This link will also give you $10 on your first $100 deposit.)
Coinmama is another speedy option to get Bitcoin or Ethereum.
Paxful is peer to peer marketplace for buying and selling bitcoin. They offer more than 300 ways to pay for bitcoins, such as direct debit, credit card, Paypal, and via giftcards.
SpectroCoin offers a fiat and virtual currency exchange with more than 20 currency options available
Once you are set up and have bought BTC or ETH you can then follow the instructions from the cryptocurrency you are buying.
Cryptocurrencies that aren’t gold-backed
While researching and updating this list I keep finding Cryptocurrencies that sound like they are gold related. The biggest naming misnomer is Bitcoin Gold (BTG), which is a fork of the Bitcoin blockchain and has no gold attached to it. What a wasted opportunity to not have an actual gold-bitcoin. The name has really messed up my gold news alerts as well.
At least Bitcoin Gold aren’t pretending to be linked to the value of gold, just as a Visa or Mastercard Gold Card isn’t pretending to be made of gold. Things start getting murky with Ethereum Gold (ETG). Ethereum Gold is built on the Ethereum blockchain and was launched in October 2017 as an airdrop to crypto forum readers. The website says that it’s a “smart-contracts governed ecosystem that applies blockchain technologies using the value of GOLD.” There is no other mention of how it is connected to the value of gold.
Crypto Bullion (CBX) has been trading since before any gold-backed crypto got started, but it doesn’t have any bullion backing. It was launched to function as a store of wealth and emulate the properties and supply of gold.
GoldCoin (GLD) is “Digital Gold” and not backed by physical gold. It was founded in 2013 and is a decentralised open-source cryptocurrency forked from Litecoin.
GBCGoldCoin (GBC) is a Russian cryptocurrency and is not backed by gold coins.
News / Watch List
Korean startup GoldMining launches gold-backed cryptocurrency. Pre-sale of tokens will start on April 1.
KaratBank appears to be cryptocurrency developed by Karatbars, which is an MLM company selling small gold bars. So far the only information I’ve seen of the ICO is from affiliates of Karatbars.
Canamex Gold Corp. announce a non-brokered private placement of Gold Royalty Tokens to accredited investors.
Cryptocurrency backed by gold being developed by Perth Mint to entice investors back to precious metals – The Perth Mint is wholly owned by the Government of Western Australia, so this would be similar to the project being developed by the Royal Mint of the UK.
IEG Holdings plans to create its own IEGH Crypto/Blockchain currency backed by gold metal and SEC registration as a security.
Goldcliff (a mining company) plan to develop a gold based cryptocurrency.
GoldenRock – a national cryptocurrency proposed by Kyrgyzstan that will be backed by gold.
HayekGold – A gold-backed, digital asset using block chain technology and the Counterparty platform. By Anthem Vault who have developed Anthem Gold. Unclear if this is going to be developed as well.
Petro – Venezuela will create a cryptocurrency backed by oil, gas, diamond reserves, and gold.
Russia is looking into launching a gold-backed “CryptoRuble”, though as a state-issued cryptocurrency that cannot be mined, it’s not very crypto.
Crypto Graveyard / Scam Coins / Dormant
Gold-backed cryptocurrencies that have been announced or their status is unclear.
CryptoGLD (CrGLD) – website at cryptogld.com is no longer working.
Digital Bullion Gold (DBG) – digitalbulliongold.com website is down and there is no contact from the developer.
Tether Gold (GLDT) – A press release was posted about an ICO for Tether Gold. It appears to be inspired by Tether (USDT), which is pegged to the US Dollar. In this case 1 GLDT = 1 Oz / 31.1 Grams .9999 AU GOLD. The website (tethergold.com) looked hastily thrown together and is no longer working. Possibly a scam coin.
Future gold-backed cryptocurrencies / ICO’s
There are more gold-backed cryptocurrencies being developed, so we will add them here as they become known. If you know of any others or are developing one leave a comment.
As mentioned previously, this is intended as a directory and is not an editorial endorsement. Do your own research before buying.
Some of the coins and exchanges include referral links which may earn Goldscape.net a commission. I will make a note of any tokens that I have bought.