Large Scale developers funding program to increase adoption, visibility and growth of $ATOM/IBC

After taking an initial poll on TG regarding a large scale funding program to onboard developers to build on cosmos, it seems evident that a a fair bit of the community is interested in increasing the visibility and adoption of atom and IBC.

IBC has been a big success and we are seeing the benefits of it already as new projects are on boarding. Even though the IBC tech is probably the most superior interoperable tech in crypto today, it is really unfortunate that it remains fairly unknown and under the radar from a adoption and visibility perspective.

The Cosmos ecosystem is at an inflection point and a large scale funding program deployed aggressively to onboard new developers to build on cosmos and IBC will bring new projects to the ecosystem which in turn will bring new users and more TVL for the platform.

My idea is to launch a large $75 to $100 million funding program to make a much needed impact in increasing development, adoption and visibility. The ultimate goal of such a funding program will be to increase the value accrual of $ATOM within the cosmos/IBC ecosystem, hence would be funded by the atom community.

The initial structure which would make sense to the atom holders are as follows. The below criteria need to be aligned in a way to maximize the value accrual of the cosmos hub and atom holder. One or more of the below criteria should be met and incorporated if a new project were to be funded by such a program.

  1. funded projects would use cosmos hub shared security and IBC router
    Or
  2. funded projects would make atom as the base ccy of their project
    Or
  3. funded projects would airdrop to atom stakers

The above requirements for a potential project can be fine tuned with further brainstorming.

The scale of the program would require about 2.25 million $ATOM based on today’s price. This is only about 0.78% of the circulating supply.

In order to fund such a large program, I would propose the following.

  1. increase the inflation of $ATOM one time by about 1% to fund such a program
  2. use some portion of the current inflation to fund the program which will impact the staking rewards/apr slightly.

Either 1 or 2 will work effectively as an announcement of such a large program will bring a ton of visibility to $atom. This should in turn increase the market cap of $atom substantially and the 1% of proposed dilution as in point 1) would be inconsequential.
If we take the route 2) then there will not be any additive dilution at all but the final impact on market cap would still be similar as above, which in my opinion could be anywhere between 30-50% increase in $ATOM market cap right away.

Funding Team

In order to increase accountability of such a funding program I would like to propose creating a team of 6 members which would be a combination of members from the tendermint team, developers, validators and community member.
The funds of the program will be held by a multi sig wallet.
Funding team members would be incentivized from the developers fund to reward them for their contribution.

Process of Deployment of Funds.

Projects and developers would approach the Funding team with their proposal to develop on cosmos with the criteria as mentioned above.

The Funding Team would analyze the projects on various criteria and filter the project which would have the highest impact on the value accrual of atom as well as the overall cosmos/IBC ecosystem. Focus would also be on diversifying the type of projects and filtering projects by sectors ( defi, nft, metaverse, gaming, privacy etc). The team would also work with potential projects to align incentives and negotiate funding needs.

Once the projects are filtered at the top, the proposal of the project would be put forward to a vote by the atom community. If the atom community vote succeeds then the funds can be deployed to the potential project.

Such deployment will take place in stages based on the progress achieved by the projects and will be constantly monitored by the funding team.

————x————x————x———-x———x———x

The time line for such a funding program should ideally be between 12 months to 24 months to give enough time to onboard new projects which have the potential to succeed and make the cosmos ecosystem even bigger and at the same time increase the value accrual for $atom holders.

This kind of a program which focuses on bringing in more talent and developers onto the cosmos ecosystem will solidify the position of the cosmos hub within the cosmos and IBC ecosystem and will future proof the value prop of $ATOM token.

I would appeal to all the validators and delegator to please consider the above idea and have a constructive discussion about it so that we can lay out a proposal for the atom community to vote.

It is critical that atom community agressively try and brand ourselves as the leader of IBC and increase the value accrual of $ATOM as IBC adoption and cosmos eco system grows.

7 Likes

FANTASTIC idea!!! Lovely way to increase visibility and support cosmos network while honoring and increasing innate value of atom. Curious to know if cosmos team has their own strategy but a response is most definitely highly anticipated!…

Great Idea!! Nice way to onboard new projects. Cosmos team, please give needed attention to the idea and have constructive brainstorming. This will defenetely impact ATOM in the long run. Hoping to see this proposal officially in the governance.

Anyway appreciate DreamCatcherPro for putting up such a proposal idea

This is a good idea in principle, but giving $100 million to some yet-to-be-announced people on a multisig seems a little risky. There needs to be some way to hold them accountable for results. I’m not that worried about outright fraud, but I am worried about people giving the money to their friends who have a project, funding stupid ideas, lack of follow-through, etc.

Also, we already have several organizations doing exactly this. Tendermint inc. is supposed to do this, as are the ICF and Informal. Each of these organizations was created by a Cosmos co-founder to promote development on Cosmos. I’m not saying that these organizations are not doing a good job, but the fact that you want to give the money to a different, new organization suggests that you are. In this case, I think that it would be good for you to make an argument about how exactly the existing Cosmos funding organizations are falling short to avoid making the same mistakes.

All that being said, I think a proposal like this one with a much smaller amount of money, say $2-5m could be a good way to try it out. If the multisig members prove themselves on this amount, maybe they can be given more. This amount of money can be completely covered by the existing community pool.

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Thank you very much for your reply and concern.

If you read the post carefully you will see that the funding team would only be responsible for filtering the projects at the top and bringing it forward to the community for a vote. Only once the community vote succeeds will the funds be deployed. This will make the whole process accountable and the responsibility of deploying the funds will lie with atom voters.

The funding once approved by the community will be deployed in stages as the project completes milestones. This progress will be overlooked by the funding team.

The funding program needs to be large enough to have a big impact in visibility and adoption of atom and increasing the value accrual of atom and fortifying its position as the leader of IBC.

Since the process of deployment of the funds is through a governance vote, I think the overall funding will be fairly accounted for.

Also, the names of the members of the funding team would be included in the final draft of the proposal which will be put up for governance vote. It will be a mix of guys from the tendermint team, developers, validators and community members.

Great idea.

Atom/Cosmos hub for the good of the community and overall IBC system needs to build out and develop.

IBC runs the risk medium to long term of having other centralized actors, think binance, google, etc take over large parts of IBC in the next 5-10 years if Atom system is not strengthened.

the port city analogy is fine, but port cities did not become successful without focus on their development.

Strengthening the Atom use case is the best thing one can do for the IBC ecosystem.

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You have to build institutional infrastructure to support an initiative like this. Onur and Marko have been building necessary infrastructure in the ICF builders program that announced during Cosmoverse.

I think once the builders project gets up and running an ATOM aligned fund might make sense.

IBC aligned capital is extremely plentiful. Virtually every major crypto fund has IBC network effect based investments.

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Another interesting area of explore is building ATOM aligned apps on top of evmos, cosmwasm and Agoric.

What about a hackathon? This could be a good, fast way to get started and build excitement. I’m no expert in running these things, but what about $1m in prizes, and $100k to pay the organizers and marketers. All submissions would be made public, and you could have a panel of judges choose winners, plus maybe a token-voted “crowd favorite”. I think you get a lot of bang for your buck in hackathons and it would let us build the expertise to maybe do the big $100m venture fund idea later.

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I agree that we need to have proper infrastructure in order to manage and effectively run an atom aligned developers fund.

A slight difference here is that any deployment of capital would be done via a decentralized governance process which would leave the atom stakers responsible for the capital as well as the success of each project from a funding perspective.

The tools required for such a fund (funding team) would essentially be to filter the top projects and bring it to a governance vote for approval. Also the progress/milestone monitoring would require a structure which can be efficiently followed to track each project.

That being said we don’t want to wait too much in order to launch such an atom aligned fund.

I can perhaps support an idea to build atom aligned dapps on evmos, Juno and agoric and this developers fund could be a good source of capital for such initiatives as well.

How long would it take for Onur and Marko to build out the necessary infrastructure in the ICF builders program. We can perhaps move this proposal forward and get it to a community vote and leverage of the ICF builders program by having Onur/Marko being one of the core members of the Developers Funding Team.

I personally do not think that we should delay the proposal too much and wait for all the tools of the ICF builders program to be ready before launching such a fund. We need aggressive atom aligned initiatives now when the momentum of IBC is catching steam and we want to fortify atom position as a leader of IBC.

In my opinion such a fund can be put up for a vote and if the proposal passes we can keep a time line of 12 to 24 months. It will give the fund enough time to have proper infrastructure and have tools to efficiently filter out top projects as well as monitor the progress of each project eventually funded by the cosmos governance vote.

Even the process flow for such an initiative takes time ( call it multiple months) and then another few months to get it operational and running. It wouldn’t be ideal to set us back multiple months and be totally dependent on waiting for ICF builders program to be completed. We can run this proposal in parallel and have a clause to use the tools of the ICF builders program as well as have Onur/Marko as one of the core members of the funding team.

What do you think?

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I just want to say that I broadly support this kind of thing. Paying 1% of tokens to double the activity on the chain (and the price) is a no-brainer. I agree with @zaki_iqlusion though that it is hard to administer, and my posts in this thread have been directed at trying to find ways to “ramp up” the effort to build expertise before going all-in.

Paying 1% of the tokens to a scheme that the general public sees as tainted or ineffective would generate a truly epic amount of FUD and could sink the token.

Great post! I support this.

Also in favor of the results this proposal suggests but there are a few missing pieces that make me question it. First was brought up by @jtremback , how is this different from current endeavors? Second is the part of the proposal that says: “Projects and developers would approach the Funding team with their proposal to develop on cosmos with the criteria as mentioned above.”. This is not how it works. Any team set out to deploy capital will have to be aggressive in attracting projects. The crypto world is swarmed with VCs and money in general. Why will this team be able to attract projects to the cosmos space when money is so easy to come by? If it’s really just the projects that approach the team directly, it will likely be low quality projects who have trouble finding capital.

Thanks for ur comment Billy. I appreciate it and am glad that you agree with and are supportive of the ethos of the proposal.

I agree with your point about being aggressive in order to bring in potential projects given the amount of capital floating around. Hence, it will be critical to choose the 6 member core team who have good network connections and are well versed with the current developments within the crypto universes. Also would be prudent to have people with development/technology background to identify top potential projects. As well as incentivize the team generously for their contribution.

Would you be so kind to suggest some names which would fit the above profile and would be willing to devote their time and resources for such a venture.
It was mentioned earlier that Onur and Marko are building out the infrastructure for the ICF builders program, so maybe it would be natural to bring one of them on board and leverage off some of the tools they are building?

This would be different from the current structure as it would be from the community fund and the deployment of the capital will occur through a governance vote once the core team has filtered/analyzed and brought in top projects for the communities consideration.

I like the idea of multiple funding entities in Cosmos executing in parallel. They should compete even, transparency and speed could be the dimensions which makes this effort competitive against larger incumbents.

Inflation is a great mechanism here and you could probably do it all at once but with a smaller amount. If the program succeeds it should be easy to justify doing it again.

If the thesis of the DAO (or fund) is to build zones with those three properties I think that’s also exciting. It would be interesting to see what other functionality from the roadmap might be helpful to see what kind of collaboration with other funded groups might exist.

I think that having the community vote on individual pre-filtered proposals is probably a waste of time. It would be more efficient to inflate a smaller amount and just trust an executive body, that executive body should then run for open election after a few funding cycles that don’t deplete the overall allocation.

Thanks for the support.

I agree with all ur points except the last. Even though it might look easier to have a centralized core team making decision on the behalf of the community fund, it goes against the decentralized ethos of cosmos.

There has been quite a bit of backlash against even having a core team to pre-filter projects. But I still think by having a core team to go after potential good projects and filtering out the trash is an effective and efficient way to run the process.

Having a community governance vote leaves the responsibility of the deployment of funds to the community which I think the overall community appreciates as the capital holders ( atom stakers) are the final decision maker.

I hear you that such a process could delay the overall time frame of onboarding newer developers and projects but I felt this was the best way for the community to participate in the decision making.

If you have any other ideas, I would be all ears.

Thanks