Ahmad Shadid stepped down as CEO of the Solana-based DePIN Protocol io.net on Sunday. The decision came two days before the launch of io.net’s token, IO. As a result, the crypto community was skeptical of the decision and the former CEO’s past.

Solana-Based DePIN Project Changes Management

Two days before the IO token launch, Ahmad Shadid announced he was stepping down “effective immediately” as CEO of io.net. The Solana-based protocol is a decentralized physical infrastructure network (DePIN) designed to “provide unlimited computing power to machine learning applications.”

Io.net aggregates GPUs from different storage providers to offer cost-efficient GPU computing power to AI and ML teams. Additionally, it allows users to earn money renting out their spare GPU capacity.

According to Shadid’s post, the decision was taken after careful consideration and is “in the best interest of the community and the project.”


Shadid annouces his departure from io.net. Source: Ahmad Shadid on X 

Moreover, he claimed he would show gratitude to the ‘IO Nation’ by donating 1 million IO tokens from his allocation to io.net’s GPU foundation “to help grow the ecosystem.”

Tory Green, former COO and co-founder of the project was named the new io.net’s CEO. Green assured users that the project will continue working towards achieving its goal of becoming the “largest AI compute network and bring AI to the world.” He stated:

AI compute spend is on track to be on the order of $100B in 2024, and yet there remain significant and structural gaps in access to existing resources. io.net’s vision is a world where AI products of the coming decade are built on open, permissionless platforms that are accessible to all. We’re excited to continue building the internet of GPUs.

Crypto Community Unsure Of Io.net’s Future

Shadid claimed that his decision was unrelated to the allegations against him. The former CEO explained he wanted the Solana-based project to operate without turbulence.

I want to emphasize that I am stepping down as CEO to allow io.net to move forward without distraction and to focus on its growth and success.

Nonetheless, the community had mixed feelings towards the news. Some users agreed that the resignation was the best step for io.net’s future, while others found the timing suspicious.

Several community members expressed skepticism, stating that a dump after launch was possible. Shadid addressed this concern, explaining that he has a “4 years lockup + vesting.” He also detailed that no investor, advisor, or team member can dump the community as they won’t get their monthly vesting tokens before June 2025.

However, io.net’s co-founder didn’t address the other claims. Some users brought forward the scamming allegations of Shadid’s past and urged investors to stay away from the project.

One X user accused Shadid of being a “well-known scammer in the Arabic crypto community” who has “been a serial scammer since 2018.” The user cited several social media posts and videos compiling the alleged scams conducted by Shadid.

Furthermore, Martin Shkreli has accused the Solana-based project of misleading the community and manipulating the information they provided. To some investors, Shadid’s resignation “basically legitimized” Shkreli’s claims and could suggest a bearish future for io.net.

Nonetheless, many expect to see how the situation develops after the launch. Io.net’s IO token is set to launch on Binance’s Launchpool on June 11. According to the crypto exchange’s announcement, 95 million IO tokens will be released at launch, and trading will start at noon UTC with the IO/BTC, IO/BNB, IO/FDUSD, and IO/TRY trading pairs.

SOL, SOLUSDT, solana

Solana (SOL) is trading at $158.58 in the three-day chart. Source: SOLUSDT on TradingView

Featured Image from Unsplash.com, Chart from TradingView.com

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