🦄 Recap: DeFi Week of Feb. 27
Hello Defiers! Happy Weekend!
Is the bear market over? That was the question buzzing through the DeFi market this week after broad-based rally turned around the fortunes of many leading names. Sam Haig reported the action and spotlighted the surge by Terra and Fantom. Sam also addressed the riddle of why TVL was not matching the pace of tokens. It’s a nice piece of market analysis.
On the NFT side, yyctrader unpacked the strange fandango that swept up Pixelmon, an out-of-nowhere project that rapidly raised $70M and then underwhelmed collectors with lackluster imagery. The floor price sank so fast after the auction that investors were saddled with 50% losses. Ugh… It’s a cautionary tale about a market that’s getting way too frothy…
Then again, there are projects that are doing truly creative work. Take Doodles’ spinoff Space Doodles, a playful new collection of NFTs. As Owen Fernau reported, that offering had its own bout of drama with a confusing valuation model.
Meanwhile, over in the Terra ecosystem, Brady Dale explored Anchor’s record rise in TVL, to $11.7B, after the Luna Foundation topped up reserves. Brady dissected the treasury mechanics of this influential network in a must read for Defiers.
Speaking of influential networks, The Defiant was thrilled to record an exclusive interview with Gavin Wood, Ethereum legend and co-founder of Polkadot, on this week’s podcast. Gavin told Defiant Chiefess Camila Russo about building a Layer 0 to support all blockchains.
As we entered the second week of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, crypto emerged as major story in the global effort to get aid to citizens in the embattled nation. Robin Schmidt and his crew produced a series of segments examining the Ukraine government’s planned airdrop, how the rouble is the new shitcoin, and why Russia cannot us blockchain to bypass Swift. Meanwhile, Sam Haig continued his excellent reporting on UkraineDAO with an exclusive interview with co-founder Alona, who is toiling to raise funds and support for her fellow Ukrainians.
A momentous week. Enjoy our roundup.
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⍺ DeFi Alpha Newsletter
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Our Inbox Dump newsletter, which is exclusive to paid subscribers, is where we include the updates and announcements that flood our DMs each week and didn’t make it to The Defiant’s content platforms. Sometimes announcements here didn’t meet the bar to become a news story, sometimes they may have slipped through the cracks, or they came late and we haven’t had a chance to cover. We also include a compilation of DeFi and crypto funding rounds in the past week so you have these in one handy place.
Gavin Wood’s crypto journey started with Ethereum – he was one of the eight original founders and the project’s CTO in the early days. Today though, he’s busy building Polkadot, a chain that is attempting to improve where Ethereum falls short. After years of development, the ecosystem’s first applications are finally coming to life as it lays the foundations to become a layer zero, where multiple Layer 1 chains and their decentralized applications can flourish. Polkadot aims to give developers the flexibility to build decentralized applications as they see fit, and on scalable infrastructure.
Gavin wants to turn Polkadot into a multichain powerhouse where financial systems and web apps can run and interact seamlessly. To Gavin, Polkadot can be the base infrastructure for a web3 future, a set of technologies that can guarantee privacy, trustlessness and decentralization, which to him, will be crucial if the free world is going to survive.
By Samuel Haig
UkraineDAO, a decentralized collective raising funds to address the humanitarian crisis unfolding in eastern Europe, has collected more than $7M in five days. The funds will be used to support non-profits and Ukrainians struggling to endure the Russian invasion, which is now entering its second week.
“The most valuable thing, to me, about this DAO, is that I was able to connect with other people who were on the ground, or that could provide some help,” Alona, a UkraineDAO co-founder and Ukrainian living in the UK, told The Defiant in an exclusive interview. “To me, UkraineDAO is about providing Ukraine with the help that it needs, and providing those connections that unite people who are willing to help or that need help.”
Alona has been instrumental in building a network of supporters in the crypto community for her embattled fellow Ukrainians. She took part in discussions last week with PleasrDAO, theinfluential collective of DeFi leaders. And Illia Polosukhin, co-founder of Near Protocol, connected her with Ethereum co-founder Vitalik Buterin. She says that Buterin called her within minutes to express his support.
By Brady Dale
With $11.7B in funds locked in, Anchor now has more funds committed to it since the savings application launched on Terra last year, according to DeFiLlama.
This is a turnaround from January, when depositors started leaving because it looked as though it might not be able to meet its roughly 20% fixed yield for those using it to grow their savings. That generous reserve was insured by a yield reserve that covered the difference when cash flows didn’t, a reserve that looked like it could run out as it fell by $2M every day.
In early February, though, the protocol sought a $450M contribution from the Luna Foundation Guard to refill its reserves. Those new reserves were turned over to the Anchor yield reserve on February 18, according to Terra.Engineer. Anchor reserves now sit at $476M (in TerraUSD), as the reserves continue to shrink by the same amount, about $2M per day.
DeFi Blue Chips Slide 80% Since 2021 as New Generation Rises A new generation of DeFi projects — Terra, Fantom — have had a blistering run in the last 30 days. The old guard, let’s call them DeFi 1.0 blue chips, not so much.
Pixelmon Fiasco Augurs Trouble for Frothy NFT Market Three weeks ago, Pixelmon, an NFT gaming project on the Ethereum blockchain, raised over $70M in a highly anticipated drop. That’s insane. And you’ll soon learn why.
What To Do If Metamask Has Stopped Working In Your Country Users in certain countries under US sanctions may have recently discovered that their MetaMask wallets have stopped working.
Terra and Fantom Are Pumping Even as DeFi TVL and Ethereum Burn Rate Drag DeFi tokens are rallying. Terra is up 54% in the last seven days, and Fantom has spiked 21%. Indeed, six of the top 100 by market cap are up by more than 50% over the past seven days, and 40 are enjoying double-digit gains for the week according to CoinGecko. The combined DeFi market cap is almost $122B after slipping below $100B on Feb. 22.
Ukraine Makes Crypto History With Airdrop and Leaves Tron’s Sun Fuming No sooner had the Ukrainian government unveiled an unprecedented airdrop to fund aid for its embattled citizens than the plan was scrapped in favor of utilizing NFTs to raise much-needed cash.
NFT Collectors Love Space Doodles Imagery But Not Its Confusing Valuation Model For all the mojo in NFTs, there’s still a lot of experimentation under way. And sometimes buyers aren’t sure what to make of a new crop of imagery, or new minting systems.
Osmosis Launches Staking Service to Bolster Shared Security in Cosmos Ecosystem Osmosis, the first decentralized exchange servicing blockchains connected by Cosmos’s Inter-Blockchain Communication protocol, has launched a new staking service.
Russia’s Invasion Triggers 6% Premium on BTC-Ukrainian Hryvnia Trade Wildly divergent spreads used to be a staple in Bitcoin trading, with savvy traders raking in profits by playing the arbitrage between the pricing on different exchanges, especially in Asia.
Polkadot and Tron Founders Beseech Ukraine to Accept Their Native Tokens as Donations It’s getting to be a status thing. This weekend, the official Twitter account of the government of Ukraine tweeted out a bitcoin address and one Ethereum, too, and asked for donations to support the nation’s defense against Russia.
Solidex Rockets to $2.18B in TVL Within Days Of Launch Solidex Finance has attracted $2.18B of assets in just a few days since the project launched on the Fantom blockchain — that’s good for the 22th slot in all of DeFi as of Feb. 28 according to DeFi Llama, which tracks total value locked (TVL).
Electric Capital Plays the Long Game with $1B for Two Funds Targeting Tokens and Equity Stakes Everyone is getting into ve-tokens, including venture capital firms that make investments with long time horizons.
Thanking all the amazing Defiers for the support and love this week (and always)!
🧑💻 ✍️ Stories in The Defiant are written by Brady Dale, Owen Fernau, Sanuel Haig and yyctrader, and edited by Edward Robinson, yyctrader and Camila Russo. Videos were produced by Robin Schmidt and Alp Gasimov. Podcast was led by Camila, edited by Alp.
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