🦄 Recap: DeFi Week of July 18
Hello Defiers! Perhaps you’ve heard of Janus, the Roman god of beginnings and transitions, a being with two faces who lorded over doorways, gateways, and passages between worlds and even eras. Well, Janus was presiding over DeFi this week.
It was fire and brimstone early on as BTC slid beneath $30K and ETH lost 13% between Sunday and Tuesday. Traders hung their heads and drew a new line in the sand at $20K for BTC, and whatever scant hopes remained this was not a bear market were dashed. And yet… and yet… then came the deals, deals galore.
There was the $100M funding round led by a16z in OpenSea, which left the eBay of NFTs with a $1.5B valuation and unicorn status. There was Polygon’s formation of a blockchain-based multimedia studio and $100M production fund, with a dream team of partners along for the ride — Atari, Decentraland, and OpenSea. And, of course, there was the head-popping fundraising round by crypto exchange FTX: $900M, bestowing the platform with an $18B valuation. Ye gods…
So what gives? What should we make of the duality in DeFi at the moment? What’s going on? Well, these are cosmic questions The Defiant will be unpacking this coming week, so keep your eyes peeled… In the meantime, we can already see glimmers of the era to come. Check out Owen Fernau’s feature on MetaCartel Ventures for how DAOs are reshaping the cultivation of DeFi startups. And call up Dan Kahan’s piece on Stoner Cats to learn how the entertainment industry is blockchaining itself to new forms of financing and distribution.
On the market side of the ledger, be sure to hunker down with Masha Prusso’s analysis of deflationary tokenomics and how the big changes coming to Ethereum will shake up the laws of supply and demand in crypto. Not a spoiler, but let’s just say tokens that actually do something valuable could be a safe haven in a bear market. Likewise, read the latest how-to guide from DeFi Dad on how to farm major yield on Polygon Balancer.
As you kick up your feet this weekend and relax with The Defiant, just bear n mind that Janus is watching, with both faces… poised to shift this whole DeFi thing into… well, stay tuned to see what’s next!
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In this week’s episode Camila Russo interviews Raoul Pal, who retired from the hedge fund world at 36 years old and has run financial media company Real Vision for the seven years since. He predicted the housing bubble, he was early to call the devastating effect the pandemic would have on the economy, and now he gives us his thoughts on what he sees is coming up in the next few months.
📺 First Look: BasketDAO's brand new BMI stablecoin product aims to revolutionise treasury management
Opinion & Analysis
In this week’s opinion-analysis piece, guest writer Masha Prusso explores how deflation, the decrease of DeFi tokens over time, will impact the market, especially with the advent of big changes in Ethereum. Her conclusions may surprise you!
Inbox Dump #17
For paid subscribers only — The Inbox Dump 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. We also include a compilation of DeFi and crypto funding rounds in the past week so you have these in one handy place.
Neon Labs’ Solana Move Tempts Developers with Scaling Power Neon Lab’s announcement that it will offer its Ethereum Virtual Machine scaling solution on Solana made quite a splash this week. It also prompted a cryptic response from 0xMaki, Sushiswap’s “fearless leader,” as he’s identified on the project’s website.
Maker Takes Final Steps to Become Fully Decentralized Ushering in New DeFi Phase Maker Foundation’s CEO Rune Christensen stepped down this week, leaving a carefully built DAO to run the protocol in his place. The move marks the beginning of a new phase for the lender and arguably for DeFi itself, as the ecosystem’s first dapp transitions into a fully decentralized organization.
Optimism and Buterin Tap Profit-Motive to Accelerate Public Goods for DeFi, Sparking Debate Gitcoin rustles up millions of dollars in funding to support Ethereum developers. Lighthouse gives away Ethereum 2.0 software. And EthHub provides educational services on the Ethereum ecosystem gratis. These endeavors are known as public goods, and no surprise, Defiers love them, and want more of them.
Weed, Cats and NFTs: New Animated Series Combines All Three A new NFT project, backed by some real star power, will have you burning green in more ways than one. “Stoner Cats” is an upcoming series of animated shorts about, well, house cats high on marijuana. And it will only be available to those who drop some greenbacks on its unique, algorithmically-generated NFTs.
Immutable X Releases Token and Plans Airdrop for Gods Unchained Owners Immutable X, an NFT-focused layer 2 solution on Ethereum from the team behind the NFT trading card game Gods Unchained, has unveiled its native token, $IMX.
EU Regulators Propose Crypto Clampdown European Defiers better buckle up, because regulators in the EU are attempting to tighten the rules on crypto transfers. On July 20, the European Commission, the executive branch of the European Union, announced a package of legislative proposals to strengthen the EU’s anti-money laundering and counter-terrorism financing (AML/CFT) rules.
Polygon Doubles Down on Gaming and NFTs with $100M Fund Polygon is raising a $100M fund to support blockchain game developers and NFT creators, and tapping the chops of Atari, the trailblazer that gave the world Pong, Space Invaders, and Asteroids.
FTX Breaks Crypto Funding Round Record with $900M Series B Bucking a bearish crypto market, FTX, the two-year-old cryptocurrency exchange, announced a $900M Series B funding round at a valuation of $18B, the company said in a statement released yesterday.
C.R.E.A.M. is Bringing Tether’s Euro-Pegged Stablecoin to DeFi Lending protocol C.R.E.A.M. Finance said it will make EURt, Tether’s euro-pegged stablecoin, available in its money markets to borrow and lend.
Venture Round Led by a16z Makes OpenSea Latest NFT Unicorn The NFT marketplace OpenSea has reached a $1.5B valuation after a $100M Series B funding round led by a16z.
Crypto Stabilizes But White-Knuckle Ride May Continue as Investors Eye $20K LevelThe crypto market’s all-time highs are just a memory. The summer slump now seems to be deepening into something more disturbing. And it’s not so far-fetched that Bitcoin may give back all of its gains since the first quarter if bears continue their rampage. Gird yourselves, it’s white-knuckle time in crypto.
Twitter’s Jack Dorsey Announces DeFi on Bitcoin Project Jack Dorsey, the Twitter CEO and Bitcoin enthusiast, wants to bring decentralized finance onto the OG cryptocurrency protocol.
Sushi Introduces Its Next-Generation AMM TridentSushi has officially announced its next-generation automated market maker (AMM) Trident. While SushiSwap started out as a fork of Uniswap, the announcement explicitly states that Trident is a new AMM “and not a fork.”
MetaCartel Reimagines Venture Capital for a DeFi Future When I joined MetaCartel Ventures’ weekly meeting online earlier this month I didn’t know what to expect. The outfit’s bare-bones website looks like something university students would cook up on an all-nighter, with low-rez GIFs and, strangely, an embedded mp3 of Evanescence’s hit “Bring Me to Life.” Its whitepaper features images reminiscent of playing cards from Magic: The Gathering, a fantasy game.
Swarm Markets Gets Licensed to Win Over Wary Investors When Philipp Pieper and Timo Lehes co-founded Swarm Markets in 2017 in California and then moved to Berlin, they did a strange thing. They knocked on the door of Germany’s financial watchdog, known as BaFin, and said, please regulate us.
Grayscale Gives Institutions Index Exposure to DeFi Grayscale is now offering institutional investors index exposure to DeFi. The Grayscale DeFi Fund tracks Coindesk’s DeFi Index (DFX), a new market cap-weighted benchmark index following a representative basket of ten DeFi crypto tokens.
Thanking all the amazing Defiers for the support and love this week (and always)!
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