The platform for decentralised fundraising on Solana
This week, we had the pleasure of interviewing a true pioneer in cryptocurrency. Based out of Amsterdam, Terry wrote his first smart contract in 2017. He has extensive experience in consulting Ethereum based projects and startups. While looking at existing platforms, Terry was inspired to create his own Solana based project, which aims to redefine fundraising through decentralisation.
We are excited to share his insights into everything about DEFI, blockchain and particularly his latest project — SOLANIUM.
SkyVision: Can you tell us more about the founding team? What inspired you to come up with your project?
We are big fans of decentralised finance but unfortunately not big fans of the current state of launchpads out there. Problems we see with current launchpads are that they are centralised and have potential for ‘insider trading’. This fuels unfair project launches and inequitable allocation practices, leading to potentially amazing projects having trouble getting off the ground. As a consequence, we saw the absolute need for transparency in the market where everybody can simply create a pool and launch their projects using an equitable and impartial system.
Another issue we saw was that there were not a vast majority of launchpads properly implementing KYC or whitelisting rules and regulations. We strongly believe that legitimate projects should always implement KYC on their investors.
SOLANIUM thus addresses this problem by:
- becoming one of the leading platforms to properly implement KYC procedures for incoming investors; and
- simplifying the KYC process by introducing a database concept where the list of previously approved investors will be on record.
As such, there will be no need for investors to re-do KYC - saving vast amounts of time & money for the both the project teams and retail investors.
SkyVision: What excites you the most about Solana Network?
Solana tackles the ‘Impossible Trinity’.
“Scalability, Privacy and Complete Decentralisation”.
After deeply integrating myself within the Solana ecosystem, I saw the potential for the enormous growth of this network. Whilst collaborating with other tech developers in generating MVPs for the SERUM UI, we were able to build the SERUM ecosystem together. They were ecstatic with what they saw and gave us their full support. What I loved about the people within the Solana community is their approach to new projects and ideas, and how they continually encourage and motivate new developments on their network.
“We received a grant from ecoSerum (Project Serum’s incubation program), for the development of the serum GUI”
SkyVision: What specifically are some of the main UI and UX issues with other launchpads and how is the SERUM GUI superior?
What typically detracts many investors from projects are the costly fees. Solana’s key advantages over other networks are:
(1) Low transaction costs; and (2) Fast speed of the blockchain.
These are the key features of why we want to build on Solana.
Unfortunately, not many people have used a Solana wallet and are not familiar with the I/O. Our aim is to educate and appeal to this audience.
We started off with setting up a wireless sign up method for Solana wallets to trial and see how people set-up these wallets and to identify the difficulties they faced. Through this trial, we discovered that the community simply wanted to know how to simply set up the Solana wallets and the functions without needing overcomplicated technical details or background. People just want to see the most important things!
Although our project will not be completely decentralised from the beginning, we aim to continually perform updates to improve user interface and experience as we transition to a decentralised platform giving governance to the SOLANIUM community in the future.
“Incentivisation is a key feature of SOLANIUM”
SkyVision: Can you tell us about staking SLIM to receive xSLIM, and what xSLIM can be used for? Why should people hold more xSLIM tokens?
We were inspired by Curve Finance — whose aim is “to incentivise liquidity providers on the Curve Finance platform as well as getting as many users involved as possible in the governance of the protocol”.
Our staking model rewards long term ‘hodlers’. This means that even if you are a small holder of the SLIM token & you strongly believe in this project, you can have a major impact. By having a longer vesting period, (i.e let’s say two, three, four years) you will have a multiplier on your xSLIM which gets rewarded to your account. Moreover, if you lock the tokens for a longer time say like 4 years you could get a 20 or 30 times multiplier .
“The longer you lock your tokens, the better rewards you will reap”
Alternatively, if you have a lot of SLIM tokens but you don't want to lock it, you can still take away your SLIM tokens, however, you will only get a smaller multiplier i.e of 0.1x. Over time it will be slowly distributed into your account, but it can always be immediately relocked.
We believe that this model would highly incentivise and encourage individuals to invest in the project for the long term.
Since anyone can create a pool, and there is no official gatekeeper, can you tell us a little bit about the process of how the team will manage and filter projects?
We are not fully operating with the pools yet as it is still under development. At the beginning, we will manage the pools by ourselves. However, in the future once the blockchain voting feature is complete and open for everyone, it will be separated from the managed launches that we approve.
There will be a clear distinction between certified and publicly voted launches. The publicly voted launch will be called Solanium pools, a community that everyone can create. Of course, we will include warnings on the UX to ensure that investors are taking actions according to their own risk (buyer beware).
We will also have spam filtering to better curate content and the UI.
There will be a clear distinction between launches that we certify or help with and those that are launched by anyone creating a pool.
Can you shed a little light on how the initial governance of having centralised decision making and blockchain voting works? What are the key benefits of this?
For governance, while we do have a hybrid model currently, we are looking into a more decentralised state in the future. The team aims to have community governance by Q4 2021. We are still considering the most optimal way to conduct this transition. Some questions we are contemplating are: Would we have a state where specific members can still do a majority of the votes? Do we want to end up in a fully decentralised governance model where projects are certified by SOLANIUM and subsequently voted upon by the community?
“Ultimately, in the end, we believe that governance should be in the hands of the community — that is, it is the community who should vote and have a voice on the best projects to ensure a fair launch!”
SkyVision: We would like to congratulate you on growing your community organically. We have seen telegram numbers dramatically increase to more than 150k Twitter subscribers! What events does the SOLANIUM team have planned to increase community engagement?
Thank you very much. It has been a crazy week. The SOLANIUM Airdrop Whitelist Campaign was a huge and unexpected success that has helped build the SOLANIUM community exponentially and most importantly organically!
We had to hire more community moderators this week because it was just too much to handle! Due to the popularity of the whitelist campaign, we are looking towards setting up a dedicated support or ticket system in the telegram group as it reaches its limits.
Now we are predominantly focusing on quality communities rather than quantity by filtering out the noise. I would like to give a shout out to our community moderators who are doing a fantastic job in managing our Telegram & Twitter accounts, and most importantly, our SOLANIUM community.
Following this campaign, our mission is to bring quality projects on SOLANIUM’s decentralised fundraising platform where people are excited to participate and utilise the SLIM tokens. This is the core of the SOLANIUM platform. We realise that having solid & legitimate projects will be the key for the reputation and branding of the platform.
SkyVision: What preparations have you guys been doing to ensure a successful launch?
Our main priority is to ensure our development operations are robust to develop the infrastructure. We did not expect so many users. It is a good test for the main launch of the platform.
We are also focusing on scaling servers to minimise downtime and people can participate without any hiccups.
We own our own API endpoint that needs to keep up with all the traffic and what's coming on the website, which is increasing over time and every day it's getting more intense.
In addition to backend developers, we also have important people at the front end, who are monitoring social media accounts. They are extremely resourceful and have helped out solving technical problems and issues whenever they arise. The SOLANIUM team is constantly developing and making substantial improvements.
SkyVision: Now that you are about to launch your project, what are the things you would have done differently, and what are the things you would do the same?
- I think we severely underestimated how many people wanted to join in the airdrop. We initially estimated it would be in the multiples of 3 from our baseline but it ended up being more like 100X!
- We also had a pretty tight timeline and could have used extra days for technical development since a lot of things popped up. I don’t think the community would have minded if it took a few extra days more and it would have given us peace of mind as well.
Done the same…
- Organisationally wise, we would have of course still worked with SkyVision Capital (SVC)! We feel that it is important to split the project amongst many different strategic partners as they each bring different skillsets & expertise.
- We did not immediately scale to a large development team. Rather, we preferred a smaller team to allow for agility and flexibility so that we could deploy changes and push updates quickly. This is much harder to do with a bigger team.
Lastly, if you have registered for the AIRDROP, the results will be in 2 days on May 17th 12:00 PM UTC. You will be able to see if you have one or more winning ticket(s) on the official site.
If you would like to learn more about SOLANIUM feel free to check our social media below!
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About SkyVision Capital
SkyVision Capital (SVC) was founded with the mission to promote new, open decentralised technology and its development. We provide advisory services and a strong ecosystem to overcome barriers allowing clients to succeed.
Our team is composed of experienced senior lawyers, financial analysts, entrepreneurs and strategists. We have deep technical knowledge, strong business experience, and legal acumen in blockchain. We are consultants to our partners and assist them with scaling their startups by jumpstarting their vision, accelerating their fundraising and providing them with go-to market strategies.
We are your LAUNCH PAD and NAVIGATOR in the uncharted LEGAL territory of blockchain and decentralisation. We do the due diligence and take care of the details, so you can focus on what you do best; disrupting the future.