This Week In DeFi - June 3
This week, Binance Labs raises $500M for a new web3 fund, Ethereum prepares for its testnet merge and the Lightning Network sets a new record.
To the DeFi community,
This week Binance’s venture capital arm, Binance Labs, raised $500 million for a new web3 investment fund – its first using outside investment. DST Global Partners and Breyer Capital backed the fund, along with a number of private equity funds, family offices, and corporations. The fund is looking to support projects that will drive the adoption of web3 and blockchain, covering investments at the incubation, early-stage venture and late-stage growth phases.
Ethereum is preparing for its first “dress rehearsal” for its proof-of-stake network merge, with a Ropsten testnet practice merge set to occur June 8th. The test-run will give a first-hand look at the performance of merge development so far, along with any possible issues that may arise once the merge goes live on mainnet. The beacon chain for the testnet merge was launched earlier this week.
The Bitcoin Lightning Network has posted a new all-time high in terms of total capacity – crossing 3900 BTC locked in the Layer-2 scaling solution. The Lightning Network has been around since 2018, when it was introduced to improve Bitcoin’s scalability issues.
Ethereum scaling network Optimism’s initial token distribution was accompanied by its fair share of drama this week, as almost 250,000 eligible addresses were airdropped OP tokens. The network’s public RPC was overloaded as token claims overwhelmed the endpoint, while the team attempted to manage the issue by taking down the token claim interface.
While the majority of the market continues its slump from last year's highs, a new "flippening" within the space appears to be playing out – Layer-1 alternative chains are being eclipsed by Ethereum Layer-2 scaling solutions. Namely, Optimism and Arbitrum have begun to generate more fees than any other "Ethereum-killer" blockchain, as capital begins to remigrate to the Ethereum ecosystem. In part sparked by the excitement of Optimism's OP token airdrop, a flurry of activity is capturing both users' attention and their capital, as they realise they no longer need to stray so far to participate in affordable decentralized markets.
Expect Layer-2 hype and attention to continue to build as more Ethereum-based scaling solutions take center stage, projects migrate and platform tokens are distributed to the most faithful users. The rise of Layer-2 platform hasn't been limited to Ethereum either, with Bitcoin's very own Lightning Network also reaching all-time highs in capacity this week. Scalability of the OG ecosystems is coming in full-force – is L2 season truly here?
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[Florent Moulin – Messari Blog] –The Graph Foundation Awards Messari $12.5mm in First-Ever Core Subgraph Developer Grant
[Sam Bourgi – CoinTelegraph] – Balancer launches on Ethereum L2 network Optimism
[Gareth Jenkinson – CoinTelegraph] – KuCoin plugs into Web3 with new decentralized wallet
[Stacy Elliott – DeCrypt] – Crypto Exchange Bitstamp Launches Earn Product for Ethereum, Algorand in US