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🤩 DeFi Users Explode as ETH Makes New Highs
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TLDR ETH is breaking new all-time highs of just under $2,800 on Thursday, and the breathtaking rally from $200 a year ago is coming with a boom in users.
METAMASK MetaMask reported it has 5M active users over in the past month. The DeFi wallet had reached 1M cumulative monthly active users across its browser extension and mobile app for the first time in October 2020.
GLOBAL SOUTH MetaMask attributed the influx of users to a combination of factors including the NFT craze and increased interest in DeFi from people in what the company calls “the Global South.”
“India and Indonesia are both in the top 5 countries in terms of MetaMask mobile adoption, while Vietnam and Nigeria are in the top 10,” the post says. “Many people in these countries do not trust their governments, and thus eagerly look towards alternatives.”
DEFI USERS Based on “DeFi Users Over Time” data compiled by 1confirmation’s Richard Chen using Dune Analytics, which tracks unique addresses interacting with major DeFi dapps, there were 586k Defi users at the beginning of October 2020. The DeFi user base has since grown about 240% to over 2M users.
TLDR As coronavirus cases spiked to over 300K new cases per day in India, the co-founder of Layer 2 solution Polygon, Sandeep Nailwal, tweeted on April 24 that he “can’t take this sitting down anymore,” and started the India Covid Crypto Relief Fund, which has raised over $3M as of April 27.
WHY IT MATTERS The speed at which donations were collected underlines both the ease of making blockchain transfers, and the confidence a transparent and auditable network inspires in the context of donations.
CROSS BLOCKCHAIN The donated funds span across ten blockchains, including Ethereum, Bitcoin, Tron, and Binance Chain. The Relief Fund has attracted donations from major crypto players like Ethereum co-founder Vitalik Buterin and ex-Coinbase CTO, Balajis Srinivasan, who is a proponent of crypto adoption in the country.
TRANSPARENCY The Relief Fund’s $2.2M Ethereum address is easily monitorable, meaning donations would be hard to fake, and use of the funds will be somewhat public, though at some point they will be converted to Indian rupees, which will be harder to track.
TLDR Uranium Finance, an automated market maker on Binance Smart Chain, suffered its second hack this month, this time to the tune of $50M.
VULNERABILITY The hack is due to a misstep in code modification which allowed the hacker to exchange one unit of an input token for 98% of the value as output according to Kyle Kistner, co-founder of DeFi protocol, bZx. Uranium’s code didn’t have the error prior to migrating to the project’s V2, which introduced the vulnerability.
PATCH The Uranium team was in the process of migrating to a version 2.1, which included a patch of the above security hole, when the attack occurred, according to the Uranium team’s Twitter.
POTENTIAL RUG PULL The bug’s introduction into Uranium’s V2 codebase and its slated change in V2.1, shows that the project knew about the bug before the exploit. This, combined with the fact that the team’s GitHub repository has been removed, led Igor Igamberdiev, research analyst at The Block, to suggest that the hack was an inside job, known as a rug pull in DeFi.
TLDR IDEO today announced the IDEO Founder Collective, where founders of the design firm’s portfolio companies can invest in each others’ startups. All 20+ members —including IDEO CoLab Ventures, the firm’s venture arm— are contributing an equal amount of equity or tokens in return for shared ownership in the collective. Besides participation in the group’s companies, members will also be able to leverage each other’s expertise and networks. Future IDEO portfolio founders will also be able to join the collective.
TLDR Ten subgraphs, eight of which track DeFi protocols have moved to The Graph’s decentralized network. The subgraphs are the first to ever migrate from The Graph’s hosted service to the decentralized mainnet and thus represent a major step towards the project’s goal of becoming the go-to decentralized indexing protocol for querying blockchain data.
TLDR Notional Finance, a decentralized fixed-rate lending protocol built on Ethereum, closed a $10M Series A funding round led by Pantera with participation from ParaFi, 1confirmation, Spartan Group, Nascent, Nima Capital, and others. The funds will be used "to build a world-class team, and invest in the further development of our product," the announcement said. Notional has attracted $17M in assets and executed $9.5M in loans since launching in January 2021.
“Asset manager Enzyme announced a “partnership with Unslashed to build out the world’s first capital efficient DeFi insurance protocol — allowing deposited collateral to earn DeFi yield on top of your standard premiums and $USF mining.”
“Balancer Labs, one of the leading automated market makers (AMM), and Gnosis, a protocol suite for new decentralized finance market mechanisms, announced today the launch of Balancer-Gnosis-Protocol (BGP). This DEX will combine the new and improved Vault system of Balancer V2 with Gnosis Protocol's price-finding mechanism. This partnership is the first of its kind, with two of the most reputable teams in Ethereum partnering to deliver a new decentralized exchange which will deliver the best user experience to traders-across price, UX, and transparency.”
“Hashflow, a hybrid approach to decentralized finance (DeFi) trading, is launching its private alpha with $3.2 million in funding from Electric Capital, Dragonfly Capital and key partners such as Alameda Research. The project looks to take on automated market makers (AMMs) like Uniswap and SushiSwap with a novel approach that relies on their real-world counterparts: the professional market makers paid to make sure various crypto assets have baseline liquidity.”
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🧑💻 ✍️ Stories in this newsletter were written by Dan Kahan and Owen Fernau, and edited by Camila Russo. Videos were produced by Robin Schmidt and Alp Gasimov. Podcast was led by Camila, edited by Alp.
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