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HBAR Foundation Announces $155M Crypto Economy Fund to Drive DeFi and Accelerate Growth on Hedera and Wider Crypto Economy

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The Fund’s early focus is on increasing network Total Value Locked (TVL), with key grants to DeFi developers and Stader Labs, a non-custodial staking platform bringing staking to the Hedera Ecosystem.

The HBAR Foundation, an organization that fuels the development of the Hedera ecosystem by providing grants and other resources, today announces the launch of a $155M Crypto Economy Fund to bootstrap Hedera Hashgraph’s Decentralized finance (DeFi) ecosystem. 

The Crypto Economy Fund is focused on increasing accessibility into and within the Hedera Network while accelerating the growth of the HBAR Economy. The Fund expects to allocate up to $60 million in grants to DEXes which may be used as liquidity rewards, furthering the development of the decentralized Hedera ecosystem.

In addition to establishing Hedera’s commitment to DeFi, accessibility via mobile and credit card options will remain a priority. 

A major recipient of the Crypto Economy Fund grant is Stader Labs, a liquid staking project that allows users to stake the native Hedera token (HBAR) and receive liquid HBARX tokens in return. 

Liquid staking enables staked assets to be used as collateral for lending, yield farming, and other DeFi opportunities while allowing users to continue accruing staking rewards and securing the protocol. 
With the Fund’s support, Stader will accelerate its mission to create a more secure decentralized staking infrastructure that evolves the Proof-of-Stake (PoS) paradigm. 

Amitej Gajjala, CEO of Stader Labs, said: “We’re thrilled to be expanding to Hedera. With its carbon negative, low-cost environment, and secure finality, the network is perfectly primed for DeFi expansion.” 

Hedera Hashgraph is already home to over 500 blockchain projects, with over a dozen focusing primarily on decentralized finance solutions. These include Sagewise, a smart contract software development kit; Hearo.gm, a decentralized, global music marketplace; Cryptotask, a decentralized freelancer marketplace; and others.

Furthermore, Hedera’s recent Smart Contracts 2.0 launch introduced Ethereum Virtual Machine (EVM) compatibility and support for Solidity developers, enabling new opportunities for programmable digital assets on Hedera. The upgraded smart contracts have also made transactions 13x faster on the Hedera mainnet when compared to Ethereum. 

Shayne Higdon, Co-Founder and Chief Executive Officer at the HBAR Foundation, commented: “Our goal is to bring the DeFi ecosystem to Hedera so that power users can benefit from the scale and low-cost that Hedera enables. This level of cost, performance and scale is critical as more institutions and consumers come to Hedera for issuing tokens, swapping assets, and engaging in the crypto economy.”  

Hedera differs from typical blockchain projects in that it uses a Directed Acyclic Graph (DAG) structure which increases transactional speed and efficiency as more transactions are added to the network. Hedera processes around 2.6 million transactions per day, with transaction finalization times of just 5 seconds. Hedera’s DAG structure makes it far quicker and more efficient than Bitcoin and Ethereum, which currently process around 300,000 and 1.2 million transactions per day, respectively.   

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