Andreessen Horowitz Seeks Token Delegate Applicants for Uniswap, Other DeFi Holdings

The venture capital giant is spearheading a new framework for decentralized governance.

AccessTimeIconSep 10, 2021 at 9:53 p.m. UTC
Updated Sep 10, 2021 at 10:15 p.m. UTC

Tracy is a deputy managing editor at CoinDesk. She owns BTC, ETH, MINA, ENS, various stablecoins, and some NFTs.

Venture capital firm Andreessen Horowitz (a16z) is seeking token delegate applicants for its decentralized finance (DeFi) investments, which include the decentralized exchange Uniswap and lending protocol Compound.

Interested participants have been invited to fill out an application via Google Forms, according to a tweet by a16z’s Alex Kroeger.

According to the application, a16z is also seeking delegates for its stake in decentralized derivatives exchange dYdX and stablecoin platforms Maker and Fei.

The announcement comes weeks after a blog post on a16z’s website revealed that the firm would “open source” its delegation procedures, which some critics have said lacked transparency. A spokesperson for Andreessen Horowitz did not immediately respond to a request for additional comment.

Token delegation is a process in decentralized finance whereby the holder of a governance token outsources its corresponding vote to a third-party, reducing the voting power held by early investors and founders. The process also allows those more informed or more active in the protocol’s governance to have a stronger voice. However, the original holder would retain their ownership – and economic interest – in the token.

Applicants will be graded across nine metrics, which include commitment to the protocol, subject matter expertise, diversity of perspectives and other criteria. A16z will score prospective delegates on a scale of 0-2 for each category, with a maximum possible score of 18. Generally, candidates with a minimum score of 13/18 or higher (over 70%) advance, according to an example rubric of the current Uniswap delegates.

A16z’s existing token delegates for Uniswap and Compound include a mix of university organizations, non-profits, startups and community leaders, including Harvard Law School’s Blockchain and Fintech Initiative, Kiva, Gauntlet and Getty Hill.

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Andreessen Horowitz's Uniswap and Compound delegate breakdown. Source: A16z website

A16z, which runs three cryptocurrency funds managing over $3 billion in assets, has increased its effort to address governance and regulatory issues associated with its cryptocurrency investments.

A new, four-person team led by a16z partner Jeff Amico will focus on protocol governance, as CoinDesk previously reported. Recently, the firm also hired former Latham & Watkins partner Miles Jennings as crypto general counsel and former CFTC regulator Brian Quintenz as a part-time advisor.

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Tracy is a deputy managing editor at CoinDesk. She owns BTC, ETH, MINA, ENS, various stablecoins, and some NFTs.

CoinDesk - Unknown

Tracy is a deputy managing editor at CoinDesk. She owns BTC, ETH, MINA, ENS, various stablecoins, and some NFTs.