The Raiden network token is the home currency of the Raiden network, which describes the protocol as a means for "fast, cheap, scalable token transfers for Ethereum". The Raiden Network Token protocol is meant to supplement Ethereum, not to compete against it. Relatively high costs in combination with long transaction times make the idea of mass acceptance of Ethereum (along with other blockchains such as Bitcoin) unrealistic at the moment. That is where the Raiden network offers a solution. By using off-chain transactions to solve the scalability problems of Ethereum, Raiden will almost immediately make low payments, regardless of the number of transactions processed in the network.
The Raiden Network Token was launched in the year 2017 by Heiko Hees. The Raiden Network project is being developed by the German Brainbot Technologies AG, a software company that focuses on the development of blockchain protocols. Hees has been a developer of Ethereum since March 2014. As a developer for Ethereum, it is clear how the founder has the shortcomings in the current protocol.