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Overstock.com CEO Patrick Byrne. Photo: Al Schaben / Getty Images

E-commerce veteran Overstock.com is planning to sell up to 500 million digital tokens via an initial coin offering that will launch next month, CEO Patrick Byrne announced today at the Money 20/20 conference in Las Vegas.

Why it matters: This is intended to become the largest ICO of all time, topping the $257 million raised by FileCoin in August.

Background: Overstock.com might seem like an unlikely ICO issuer, but the company has been an early adopted of cryptocurrencies. It was one of the first companies to accept payment via Bitcoin, and has formed a subsidiary called tØ that is creating the first SEC-compliant exchange for companies to trade digital tokens. It's that tØ exchange, spurred by a July regulatory finding, that would be financed via the ICO sale.

Axios spoke with Byrne prior to his speech, and learned a bit more:

  • He acknowledges that it may not make sense for both Overstock.com and tØ to remain parts of the same company, given their very different businesses. If a split does come, he plans to continue running the crypto piece (although leaves open the possibility of overseeing both). Overstock.com currently has a market cap just south of $1 billion.
  • The Overstock.com ICO will utilize tØ, with Byrne comparing it to Jonas Salk injecting himself with the polio vaccine to prove safety.
  • He believes in a future whereby companies find it more efficient to raise capital via ICOs than by selling stock, and thinks many existing companies could issue ICOs to buy back shares.
  • Byrne says that at least half of the ICOs he's seen are specious, often just a one-page white paper hoping to attract unsophisticated investors.

Go deeper

Senate Democrats demand answers on FBI's Kavanaugh probe

Photographer: Andrew Harrer/Bloomberg via Getty Images

Senate Democrats are demanding that the FBI hand over "all records and communications" related to the FBI tip line set up to investigate Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh when he was a nominee in 2018.

Why it matters: The ask comes after the FBI revealed it received more than 4,500 tips about Kavanaugh when he was awaiting Senate confirmation amid sexual assault allegations. Only the most "relevant" of these tips were forwarded to the Trump White House.

Chip relief on the horizon

Illustration: Sarah Grillo

Good news: The worst of the chip supply crunch might be near.

The other side: Here's the bad news... CEOs say chips totally flowing like normal is still a ways out.

Trump ally Tom Barrack pays $250 million bond to get out of jail

Tom Barrack speaking at a symposium in Tokyo in March 2019. Photo: Kiyoshi Ota/Bloomberg via Getty Images

Real estate investor Tom Barrack paid a federal court a bond of $250 million to get out of jail on Friday while awaiting trial after he was arrested and charged with acting as an unregistered foreign agent for the United Arab Emirates earlier this week, AP reports.

Driving the news: A federal judge also ordered Barrack, a longtime ally of former President Trump and chair of his inaugural committee, to wear a GPS monitoring bracelet at all times and barred him from transferring funds overseas.