On May 14th, four cryptocurrency and blockchain enthusiasts went on an expedition to conquer the summit of the world’s tallest mountain – Everest. The expedition was organized by the Ukrainian startup ASKfm in a marketing stunt, promoting their Initial Coin Offering and to bring a Ledger hardware wallet on top of Mount Everest’s summit. But the ASKfm Everest venture turned out tragic, because one of the Sherpa died along the way.
Great ASKfm Everest marketing campaing, tragic turn of events
The Ukrainian social network, ASKfm sponsored and initiated a great marketing scheme to promote their upcoming Initial Coin Offering – hide a Ledger wallet on top of the summit of Mount Everest. The hardware wallet that is buried on the tallest point on earth, contains 500 000 ASKT digital coins and is up for grabs for the first brave cryptocurrency enthusiast to conquer the tallest summit on Earth. The Ukrainian company stated that the tokens could be worth 50 000$ in the future, but the Initial Coin Offering has yet to start and the coins are virtually useless as of now.
Sadly, one of the Sherpa that was helping the climbers, died on the way down. It was reported that the Sherpa developed snow blindness and was eventually left behind by the other climbers. However, the group of climbers stated on Alan Arnette’s blog, that he went missing which was questionable at best. Alan Arnette is one of the best Everest related bloggers and he himself was skeptical about the climbers’ stories on how the Sherpa disappeared:
“It is hard to comprehend how a 45 year-old Sherpa developed snow blindness, was reported to be staggering and no one was able to aid him…I am hoping to obtain more details on this tragic event”
ASKfm and the group of climbers gave conflicting stories and were not at the same page at first. When asked, two of the climbers said that the Sherpa just disappeared on the way down and they did not know where or why did he go.
Some things didn’t add up
However, when ASKfm were asked about the situation, they gave a somewhat conflicting statement compared to the ones their climbers made. They stated in an official public statement that the Sherpa was helping another group of climbers at the time he went missing. The company stated:
“We’ve become aware that a Sherpa who successfully helped one of our sponsored climbers on a part of their venture, before he assisted other non-related groups of climbers, later went missing. The ”
It’s strange that the Sherpa disappeared to help some other group. Taras Pozdnii was one of the climbers and in a picture that was uploaded on Facebook he was shown with a bandaged hand, giving thumbs up. But he did not mention the missing Sherpa. Pozdnii posted:
“In general, the climb was notable, now we eat steaks.” Pozdnii also added when he was reached by a paper for answers: “The Sherpa was behind us and we don’t know what happened to him. We were going swift and the Sherpa was not coming with us. He was behind us and we did not see him.”
ASKfm’s CEO, Max Tsaryk told the same paper in a statement:
“We do not know what happened after, because this was the last official update we have received.” The company’s last comment was that they don’t know about him: “The last update about the missing Sherpa was that other Sherpa went to look for him.”
More information is needed on the subject, but this is a sour way to end your Initial Coin Offering marketing campaign. Still, all the publicity will eventually be good for the Ukrainian company, because even bad publicity is still publicity.
If you want to read last week’s Fail of the Week, click here to read about the partnership between Verge and Pornhub.
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