Protocol Village: EOS Network Ventures Invests in Spirit Blockchain Capital, Gets Board Seat

The latest in blockchain tech upgrades, funding announcements and deals. For the period of Nov. 30-Dec. 6, with live updates throughout.

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Dec. 6: Spirit Blockchain Capital (SBC) closed its latest funding round, which included a significant investment from EOS Network Ventures (“ENV”), according to the team: "This collaboration isn't just about funds — it's about creating a strong, knowledge-driven partnership: ENV will have a board seat and play a key role in the company's investment decisions, leveraging their expertise from a top Delegated PoS L1."

Io.net Launches 'Filecoin Storage Providers'

Dec. 6: Io.net, a distributed GPU computing platform for AI startups, announced today that it's launching a new feature allowing Filecoin Storage Providers (SPs) to become GPU suppliers for the platform, according to the team. This initiative allows SPs to contribute their GPUs to resource-hungry machine learning, AI and advanced applications, opening up a new revenue stream for SPs, with 1,500 GPUs from SPs integrated into io.net's 17,000 GPU-strong platform. (FIL)

Protocol Village is a regular feature of The Protocol, our weekly newsletter exploring the tech behind crypto, one block at a time. Sign up here to get it in your inbox every Wednesday. Project teams can submit updates here. For previous versions of Protocol Village, please go here. Also please check out our weekly The Protocol podcast.

Tribal Finance Launches First Lending Pools

Dec. 6: Tribal Finance, an RWA protocol, launched its first lending pools, offering up to 14% yields and targeting SMEs in Latin America and the Middle East, according to the team. "Funded by $41M from SoftBank, Coinbase and Shima Capital, among others, it leverages blockchain to provide collateralized lending opportunities. It emphasizes legal compliance and includes features like tokenized legal frameworks and credit enhancements to ensure secure and transparent transactions."

QANPlatform for Quantum Resistance Raises $15M from Qatar's MBK

Dec. 5 (EXCLUSIVE): QANplatform, a layer-1 blockchain compatible with Ethereum's EVM standard that says it's quantum resistant, has signed a $15 million investment contract with MBK Holding, whose founder and chairman is Qatari Sheikh Mansoor Bin Khalifa Al-Thani, prior to its highly anticipated testnet launch, according to a press release. The blockchain uses "NIST Primary recommended post-quantum algorithm," according to the release. "One of the unique features of QANplatform, besides rapid cloud deployment or quantum-resistant security, is its ability to support smart contracts in any programming language. The QAN Virtual Machine (QVM) allows developers to write smart contracts in any Linux-Kernel-compatible programming language (like: JavaScript, Java, Python, TypeScript, C, C++, C#, etc.)."

QANPlatform co-founder and CTO Johann Polecsak (left), with Qatari Sheikh Mansoor Bin Khalifa Al-Thani and QANPlatform CEO Jevgenia Kim. (QANPlatform)
QANPlatform co-founder and CTO Johann Polecsak (left), with Qatari Sheikh Mansoor Bin Khalifa Al-Thani and QANPlatform CEO Jevgenia Kim. (QANPlatform)

Salus Security Officials Get Research Paper Published on Nature Website

Dec. 5: Team members of Salus, a Web3 security company, got a research paper published on the website of the journal Nature, in the "Scientific Reports" section. Titled, "Deep learning-based solution for smart contract vulnerabilities detection," the report showcases how deep learning can detect code that's vulnerable to exploits. "Using the CodeBERT pre-training model for data preprocessing, we could capture the syntax and semantics of the code more accurately. To demonstrate the feasibility of our proposed solution, we evaluate its performance using the SolidiFI-benchmark dataset, which consists of 9369 vulnerable contracts injected with vulnerabilities from seven different types," the paper reads.

Figure included in research paper published by the Salus authors. (Xueyan Tang, Yuying Du, Alan Lai, Ze Zhang and Lingzhi Shi, Nature's Scientific Reports)
Figure included in research paper published by the Salus authors. (Xueyan Tang, Yuying Du, Alan Lai, Ze Zhang and Lingzhi Shi, Nature's Scientific Reports)

Push Protocol Scaling Solution to Enable Web3 Platforms to Accommodate 5K Members

Dec. 5 (EXCLUSIVE): Push Protocol, the Web3 communication protocol, launched their scaling solution to enable Web3 platforms to accommodate over 5,000 members in a group chat, and will further extend this to +50,000 soon, according to the team: "The solution also incorporates native token/NFT gating capabilities. This means that group members automatically receive certain privileges based on the tokens or NFTs they hold in their wallet, resulting in a much smoother administrative process. For instance, a user who holds 100 $XYZ tokens can join the group chat, while a user with 1,000 $XYZ tokens will be able to send messages."

TBD Introduces First Live Components of 'tbDEX'

Dec. 5: TBD, a Bitcoin-focused unit of Jack Dorsey's Block, has introduced the first live components of tbDEX, an open-source protocol allowing financial institutions to facilitate global transactions using verifiable credentials, according to a press release. Yellow Card, a crypto exchange in Africa, will be the first institution to use tbDEX, and will "offer individuals in 20 countries the convenience of receiving bitcoin or stablecoin payments directly in their local currency to withdraw from their bank accounts peer-to-peer payment apps or mobile money providers."

Oasis Joins With Binance-Backed Gaming Hub NFTb for Sealed Bid Auctions

Dec. 5: Oasis, the privacy layer for Web3, announced that it has joined forces with NFTb, the Binance-backed multichain social gaming hub, to spearhead a new level of privacy for digital collectibles and gaming, according to the team: "With this, the pair will introduce first-of-its-kind technology, such as sealed bid auctions that prevent common issues in the NFT space like gas wars, frontrunning and poor price discovery, which overcomes limitations posted by Layer 1 networks like Ethereum."

Web3Auth Announces Launch of SafeAuth

Dec. 5: Web3Auth, in partnership with Safe, announced the launch of SafeAuth, according to the team: "Simplifying onboarding with Account Abstraction has been a concept familiar to crypto industry, SafeAuth, leveraging the strengths of Web3Auth and Safe, enables users to swiftly create Safe Smart Account wallets. This is facilitated by social logins secured by MPC, eliminating the traditional need for seed phrases and significantly enhancing user convenience and security. SafeAuth ensures that each smart account, once created is attached to a social login, and can be portably accessed, much like an EOA (like Metamask)."

Neutron Acquires 25% of Software Company Known for CosmWasm

Dec. 5: Neutron, a secure cross-chain smart contract platform for DeFi, is entering a strategic collaboration with Confio, acquiring 25% of the software company known for developing CosmWasm, the leading virtual machine of the Cosmos ecosystem, according to the team: "This collaboration will drive adoption and technological improvements to CosmWasm including in key focus areas for Web3 such as zk-technology and privacy."

Hashflow's 2.0 Upgrade Brings Intent-Based 'Smart Order Routing'

Dec. 5: Hashflow, a leading multichain decentralized finance (DeFi) trading platform, on Tuesday unveiled Hashflow 2.0, a fully upgraded experience with superior pricing, liquidity, and token availability, via its new intent-based "Smart Order Routing" (SOR) architecture, according to the team: "The upgrade will also include Hashflow's first non-EVM chain deployment with inter and native cross-chain swaps available on Solana."

IBM Introduces New Cold Storage Tech for Crypto Assets

Dec. 5: IBM has released a cryptographic signing technology for handling digital assets in cold storage, reducing the risk associated with manual procedures while keeping assets at arm's-length from an internet connection. The tech giant said in a statement Tuesday that its IBM Hyper Protect Offline Signing Orchestrator (OSO) helps protect high-value transactions by offering additional security layers, including disconnected network operations, time-based security and electronic transaction approval by multiple stakeholders.

Fantom Launches 'Sonic Labs' Accelerator With Andre Cronje as Mentor

Dec. 4: The Fantom Foundation ("the Foundation"), the team supporting the development of the Fantom blockchain, today announced the launch of its Sonic Labs startup accelerator program to foster innovation within Fantom's new Sonic technology stack and empower the next generation of Web3 founders with vital resources, guidance, and support, according to the team: "Through this accelerator program, the Foundation is identifying up to five projects to join Sonic Labs and receive grants from a pool of 1,000,000 FTM (~$294,000)." Developers can begin building their projects on Sonic starting on Friday, Dec. 15. (FTM)

Umee UX Chain Proposes Merger With Osmosis, to Form Cosmos-Based DeFi Hub

Dec. 4: The Umee UX chain, the largest Cosmos-based lending protocol, announces a proposed merger with Osmosis, the leading Cosmos DEX, to form a unified interchain DeFi hub, according to the team: "This proposed merger involves a code transition where the UX chain will reimplement its code base on Osmosis, enabling advanced features including spot margin trading, interchain flash loans, MEV markets, and more. The merging of UX’s product features onto the Osmosis chain signifies a dedication to the flexible functionalities that can be offered on an integrated DeFi Hub." (ATOM) (OSMO) [UX]

Mantle Releases Liquid Staking Protocol, Expanding Beyond Layer-2 Operator

Dec. 4: Mantle has launched Mantle LSP to give users instant and sustainable yields tapped directly from Ethereum’s PoS validator network, according to the team: "Mantle LSP aims to maintain the highest sustainable core yield through the exploration of MEV and Treasury yield sharing, while ensuring the wide adoption of $mETH across a diverse range of Mantle L2 DeFi applications, core technology partners and centralized exchange partners. It utilizes a modern design that places an emphasis on the integrity of the ETH: $mETH process on L1, without added complexities from other PoS tokens and chains."

Circle Launches Open-Source Protocols to Address On-Chain Theft and Illicit Finance

Dec. 4: Circle CEO Jeremy Allaire posted on X a whitepaper describing a "detailed Recoverable Token standard that enables transfers to be revoked through a variety of of configurations," along with a separate whitepaper describing a "model for 'R-Pools,' which are effectively an insurance and liquidity model for Recoverable Tokens, enabling a holder of a Recoverable Token to redeem via an insurance pool." The projects were developed in conjunction with Stanford's Applied Cryptography Group, according to Allaire.

Standard Chartered-Backed Zodia Custody Joins Ripple-Owned Metaco’s Global Crypto Storage Network

Dec. 4: Zodia Custody, a cryptocurrency storage provider backed by Standard Chartered (STAN), is joining Ripple-owned custody specialist Metaco's network, which is designed to handle the safekeeping and settlement of digital assets for institutions around the world, the firms said Monday.

Blast, Envisioned as Layer-2 With Yield, Now Hiring

Dec. 1: Blast, the Ethereum layer-2 project criticized (even by one of its own investors) for accepting deposits with the network launch still months away, is now apparently hiring. The project's website lists two open positions for a "Senior DevOps Engineer" and a "Senior Protocol Engineer." The initial deposit contract has now garnered more than $650 million, a higher total value locked or TVL than Solana.

Screengrab from Blast job description for "Senior Protocol Engineer." (Blast)
Screengrab from Blast job description for "Senior Protocol Engineer." (Blast)

United Nations Development Programme to Launch 'Algorand Blockchain Academy'

Dec. 1: The United National Development Programme is launching a blockchain academy in partnership with Algorand Foundation, according to a press release. "The Algorand Blockchain Academy will launch in 2024 and is designed to bolster UNDP staff capacity through education and training in blockchain technology and its practical applications for sustainable development." Focus areas include financial inclusion, supply-chain transparency, real-world asset tokenization and digital identity. (ALGO)

Arbitrum Lands RARI's New NFT-Focused Layer-3 Chain

Nov. 30: RARI Foundation, focused on NFT infrastructure, announced that it has used Arbitrum Orbit technology to create a new layer-3 chain, RARI Chain, and has just unveiled the test network. The project helps to guarantee creator royalties, taking a step further to build NFT infrastructure, according to the team: "Designed with creators and collectors in mind, the RARI Chain emerges as a key NFT infrastructure solution – an EVM-equivalent chain built on Arbitrum, designed to deliver a royalty-enforcing, high-speed, low-cost and developer-friendly network for creators, collectors, and builders. RARI Chain embeds royalties seamlessly on the node level, empowering creators with the freedom to create and fueling cross-market interoperability."

Aragon Deploys on Layer-2 Arbitrum, After Previously Deploying on Polygon, Base

Nov. 30: Aragon has deployed its modular Aragon OSx DAO framework and no-code Aragon App on the layer-2 Arbitrum, opening the door for DAOs to interact with a thriving ecosystem of protocols, applications, and assets, according to the team: "Arbitrum’s rollup technology serves as a gateway to the largest layer-1 ecosystem – Ethereum – and Aragon’s user-friendly tech stack unlocks the mass adoption of DAO technology." Aragon has already deployed on the layer 2s Polygon and Base. (ARB) (ANT)

American Cancer Society Running Quadratic Funding Round Using Gitcoin Grants Stack

Nov. 30: The American Cancer Society (ACS) is running a Quadratic Funding (QF) round using Gitcoin Grants Stack, with $75,000 in matching funds, according to the team: "Until Dec. 12, the ACS QF round will support multiple mission support programs across Patient Lodging, Health Equity, Cancer Screening and Cancer Research, aiming to bring DAO-driven grant allocation to the NGO sector. The ACS patient centered programming includes peer to peer support tools, assistance with travel and a place to stay during treatment, and providing educational materials on various types of cancer, treatment options and coping strategies."

Provenance Blockchain Integrates With Leap Wallet

Nov. 30: Provenance Blockchain Foundation, focused on the regulated financial services industry, announced that Leap Wallet is now integrated with the Provenance Blockchain, according to the team: "The integration enables Leap as an option for managing and staking HASH, transferring assets, viewing and voting on proposals. Leap is an all-in-one wallet supporting 50+ Cosmos chains."

Obligate Announces Deployment on Base, in Addition to Polygon

Nov. 30: Obligate, a pioneering on-chain debt capital markets platform, announces its deployment on Base, the Ethereum layer 2 incubated within Coinbase, according to the team: "This development marks the start of a new chapter for the institutional adoption of blockchain-native assets and on-chain capital markets through Obligate. By choosing to deploy on Base, Obligate is signifying its commitment to overcoming the unique challenges institutions face in on-chain capital markets." Obligate is currently built and operating on Polygon.

Bastion Appoints Caroline Friedman as Chief Operating Officer

Nov. 30: Bastion, an enterprise-focused Web3 orchestrator, announced the appointment of Caroline Friedman as chief operating officer, after serving as head of operations since inception, according to the team: "Friedman will be responsible for managing the company's compliance and regulatory matters, public policy, legal, people, and finance functions, ensuring that Bastion meets the highest standards of operational excellence and customer satisfaction."

CORRECTION (14:44 UTC): RARI's new chain will be a layer-3 on Arbitrum Orbit, not a layer-2 as initially reported.

Edited by Bradley Keoun.

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CoinDesk is an award-winning media outlet that covers the cryptocurrency industry. Its journalists abide by a strict set of editorial policies. In November 2023, CoinDesk was acquired by the Bullish group, owner of Bullish, a regulated, digital assets exchange. The Bullish group is majority-owned by Block.one; both companies have interests in a variety of blockchain and digital asset businesses and significant holdings of digital assets, including bitcoin. CoinDesk operates as an independent subsidiary with an editorial committee to protect journalistic independence. CoinDesk offers all employees above a certain salary threshold, including journalists, stock options in the Bullish group as part of their compensation.

Bradley Keoun

Bradley Keoun is the managing editor of CoinDesk's Tech & Protocols team. He owns less than $1,000 each of several cryptocurrencies.


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