One of the toughest puzzles in crypto is figuring out what to take seriously.
On Friday, the DeFi Alliance — a decentralized finance startup incubator and accelerator — announced a list of 11 new members. Some were predictable, such as oracle provider Chainlink and VC stalwart Blockchain Capital, but one name stood out in particular: eGirl Capital, the social media menace and upstart venture capital outfit inspired by a horned-up Internet subculture.
The announcement prompted an industry-wide heavy sigh and rubbing of the eyes:
— Qiao Wang (@QwQiao) March 26, 2021
eGirl members, such as Degen Spartan, are known just as much for their cogent analysis of crypto’s notoriously complex markets as they are for posting nothing but animated porn for weeks at a time. One member — perhaps one of the best and brightest on cryptoTwitter — dons the Internet persona of a Pokemon, Ditto, that has transformed into a couch so that people will unwittingly sit on them. The constellation of memetic touchstones animating these various comedic bits is too exhausting to summarize and likely worth an anthropological study.
While it might be easy to pass the group off as a joke gone too far (by that standard the t-rex in Jurassic Park is a pet that got off-leash), eGirl has been included in some high-profile press releases of late. The group participated in a $4.9 million funding round for decentralized finance protocol Alchemix, and has also announced investments in Radicle and Unisocks. They’ll be releasing the first episode of a in-house podcast series next week.
As for their funding, in a question-and-answer document this reporter caught a glimpse of a figure prior to a committee decision to delete it and offer no comment in an effort to appear more “mysterious;” if accurate, it was staggeringly high.
Their arrival on the investment scene comes amid a period of professionalization and institutional adoption for crypto. Hedge funds that previously dismissed cryptocurrencies as a scam are now setting up trading desks. The assets are getting to be so boring that retirement funds are allocating money into digital currencies.
eGirl made it clear, however, that they’re willing (and perhaps eager) to lob a glitter bomb into the midst of the increasingly buttoned-up affair. As DAO and community growth specialist Pet3rpan put it:
“egirl/eboy aesthetic is a big fuck you to traditional ideals of culture of the last 10 years, we dont care that we aren’t cool.”
Anon currency, anon VCs, anon projects
Traditional venture capital organizations bring varying degrees of utility to a project besides money. Delphi Digital, for instance, can actively contribute to the architecting and engineering of the tokenomics and contracts of a protocol. Many bring public relations expertise and can attract significant publicity.
So why would anyone work with an organization overwhelmingly peopled with anons? And, likewise, what do the anons think they can bring to the table?
“Crypto was started by an anonymous founder with strong pseudonymity built into the heart of the bitcoin protocol and all those who followed it. Bitcoin is stronger for it too,” they said. “[…] While egirl has invested in a wide range of anon and non-anon projects, anon funds funding anon teams can reverse this trend and bring back the privacy preserving qualities we all value deep down in our heart of hearts.”
eGirl member Scoopy Trooples, who is also a core team member for eGirl portfolio protocol Alchemix, noted that eGirl’s involvement was key in helping to generate ideas and refine the wider vision. In a Tweet, they also thanked eGirl for bootstrapping liquidity, fostering insider connections, and promoting the project:
@egirl_capital for being quick to understand the concept of our application and providing ample funding for our initial sushi pool. Their investment thesis into Alchemix was a fantastic piece that raised awareness. Industry connections through them have also been instrumental.
— scoopy trooples (@scupytrooples) March 27, 2021
These benefits are derived in part from the wide range of backgrounds the various eGirls represent, and in part from the familiarity all members have with the ecosystem.
“eGirl is committed to supporting decentralized primitives for dapps and DeFi. We’re frequent users and contributors so we know first-hand what brings value to users and the community. Also, memes and anime.”
In some ways, their emergence feels inevitable: if traditional VCs are increasingly comfortable investing in anon teams and DAOs, why wouldn’t the VCs eventually go anon themselves?
“eGirl capital is merely the resultant product of a world where traditional limits and restrictions are finally being broken through,” said Twitter trader and personality loomdart. “We are reverting to a system with less hand rails, and while this may seem scary it lets true talent stand out, unhindered by historical ties.”
He followed this quote up shortly after with a message bemoaning it for sounding too much like a “battle cry from the war of the roses.” It was obvious, however, that he meant it.
While eGirl may be the first popular example of an all-anon crypto VC, it won’t be the last. Given how they’re comparatively long in the tooth, the group offered some advice for enterprising frog avatars looking to form their own investment organizations, including members holding each other accountable with clearly-defined roles and taking time to develop sophisticated, high-conviction investment theses.
“The nature of an anon decentralized collective is naturally to be very adhoc about things. While this may work in the early days, establishing norms and organizational structure to the collective will help the group to coordinate and persist,” they said.
.@egirl_capital will become the Berkshire Hathaway of our generation
this is an unrivalled investor dream team, books will be written, movies will be made pic.twitter.com/RiYYsuiecW
— John Dummett (@zoomerjd) March 21, 2021
The irony, of course, is that eGirl itself remains self-evidently ad hoc. When this reporter asked if it would be appropriate to refer to a member as a “partner at eGirl Capital,” the question set off a brief flurry of debate about whether “partner” entails legal connotations and if the word implied a formal hierarchy. Different members even offered contradictory answers as to whether or not the group can be considered a VC in the traditional sense:
“eGirl isn’t a VC, we’re simps. We’re a grassroots group of contributors that support projects with strong teams and visions. eGirl includes engineers, business leaders, product managers, meme creators, technical analysts and investors,” they said.
So what happens when the group finally decides what, exactly, it is? When the joke goes as far as it can, propelling the eGirls — whether in spite of or due to the anime, anonymity, and bad puns — into the same lofty echelons of success as the Alamedas and the Delphis of the world?
They offered a simple vision:
“First she is an eGirl, then she becomes an eWoman and later an eQueen.”
Reef Finance’s Schedules Mainnet Release for May, Promises Polkadot Integration
Reef Finance has announced that its Substrate-based mainnet will see the light of day in May 2021. Called Reef Chain, it promises to “make DeFi easy” by enabling developers to use a highly scalable and fully EVM-compatible network that’s integrated into the Polkadot ecosystem.
Reef Chain Coming in May
Reef Finance is a cross-chain DeFi operating system allowing traders to access liquidity from centralized and decentralized exchanges through its smart liquidity aggregator and yield machine. The project outlined the date for its long-anticipated mainnet launch in a press release shared with CryptoPotato.
According to it, Reef Chain will be launched next month after finishing the final checks of the current Maldives testnet. The precise date will “depend on the result of the rigorous tests being conducted right now, though the team is confident that they will be completed soon.”
Upon its release, Reef Chain will enable DeFi developers to produce scalable and EVM-compatible systems integrated into the Polkadot ecosystem. Reef’s new product will be rolled out as a standalone blockchain based on the Substrate framework. This feature will simplify the integration to the Polkadot parachain network.
The mainnet’s compatibility with EVM, meaning developers can write contracts in Solidity or Vyper and deploy them on the chain, and its ability to bridge with other blockchains, including Ethereum, should enhance its interoperability features.
No Better Timing
Denko Mancheski, CEO of Reef Finance, outlined Reef Chain’s launch as perfect timing because of the “insatiable” demand for DeFi and the issues he sees with the current ecosystem. More specifically, those are the record-high transaction costs on the Ethereum network and even the struggling lately Binance Smart Chain.
Apart from promising scalability and deeper liquidity integration, Reef Chain is also “committed to helping out developers in their quest to bring their DeFi idea to life.” It plans to do so by enabling them access to Reef’s user base, network partners, investors, exchanges, and media.
“We know the struggles of up and coming developers all too well, and a lot of the time, technical skills are only a part of the equation. By tapping into Reef’s business network, DeFi builders will multiply their chances of success.” – concluded Mancheski.
CEO of a Turkish Crypto Exchange Thodex Reportedly Runs Off With $2 Billion
Nearly 400,000 users of a Turkish cryptocurrency exchange were left out of their accounts without being able to withdraw their funds. The platform’s website has been down for several days, while reports suggest its CEO has already fled the country with up to $2 billion.
Turkish Exchange Does a Rug Pull?
Bloomberg reported yesterday that Thodex, a Turkey-based crypto exchange, has ceased trading, citing an “unspecified partnership transaction.” The founded in 2017 trading platform issued a statement explaining that all services will remain shut down for about five working days. However, the message reassured customers that they shouldn’t worry about their funds.
Approximately at the same time, though, users started to complain about their inability to access their own assets. Some took it to Twitter to exemplify the absurdity of the situation.
A local #Crypto exchange where I’d ~20% of my entire trading capital got rug pulled
-20 days no withdrawal (fiat & crypto)
-Then the website went offline
-Then the CEO run abroad
I’m not broke, but it hurts… Alot
It sucks, Even when u deal with regulated exchanges#Thodex
— Feras_Crypto (will Never DM you First) (@FeraSY1) April 21, 2021
More recent coverages asserted that the exchange’s chief executive officer and founder, Faruk Fatih Ozer, who refrained answering comments before, had fled the country.
Users Alleging of Fraud
Upon the news of Ozer’s alleged escape from Turkey, users of the local exchange hired a law firm to file a complaint against Thodex. Oguz Evren Kilic, representing an unspecified number of Thodex customers, confirmed the development, saying, “we have filed a legal complaint on Wednesday.”
He speculated that the funds on the Turkish exchange could be worth “hundreds of millions of dollars,” keeping in mind that the user base is just shy of 400,000. A prosecutor in Istanbul has reportedly launched an investigation.
According to another report, Thodex’s CEO and founder has run away in Thailand with an estimated amount of roughly $2 billion.
It’s worth noting that Turkish authorities have already taken a steep approach towards the cryptocurrency industry. CryptoPotato informed last week of the country’s latest rule on digital assets, banning users from using them as payment instruments from April 30th.
Chainlink is uniquely placed to play this out in the market
2021 has been a good year for Chainlink, the project growing leaps and bounds over the past few months. What’s more, LINK has continued to build on its foundations from last year, with the altcoin surging up the charts over the past few months. In fact, on the back of the wider market’s bullishness, LINK touched a new ATH on the charts just a few days ago.
At the time of writing, however, the aforementioned bullishness had given way to a wave of corrections, with the altcoin trading at a price level that was 18% away from its ATH.
What does this mean then? Has LINK’s price rally finally exhausted itself? On the contrary, a closer look at factors such as ecosystem-centric developments, metrics, and technical fundamentals would suggest quite the opposite.
The most crucial of these ecosystem-centric developments came to the fore a few days ago when the project released the whitepaper for its next protocol upgrade – Chainlink 2.0. As the DeFi sector’s leading decentralized oracle provider, this is a significant development, especially in light of the inflows that have been moving into DeFi over the past few months.
The whitepaper in question proposed a roadmap of Chainlink’s future, one which sought to address the limitations that were part of the initial whitepaper. Smart contracts with limited functionality, for instance. According to a recent report by OKEx Insights,
“Chainlink 2.0 addresses these limitations by enabling hybrid smart contracts in DONs — allowing blockchain protocols to access off-chain data sources and perform off-chain computations.”
What’s more, 2.0 also seeks to make oracles much more scalable, with the addition of the ability to perform off-chain calculations and the introduction of a “transaction-execution framework for Decentralized Oracle Networks which processes off-chain transactions and oracle reporting.”
Finally, Chainlink 2.0 will also be a step towards strengthening privacy protections on the blockchain network with the addition of confidentiality-preserving adapters and support for confidential layer-2 systems.
Needless to say, this a major update, one that could have major repercussions on the value of LINK on the price charts. However, contrary to expectations, when the paper was first made public on the 15th of April, the altcoin’s market failed to react. In fact, it corrected instead.
Why? Well, because the rest of the market corrected too on the back of Bitcoin’s depreciation and fall below the $60,000-level. In doing so, what can be argued is that LINK’s price is yet to price in the aforementioned development. This means that when the bearish phase passes and consolidation ensues, there is potential for a lot more upside in the Chainlink market.
In fact, it can be hypothesized that LINK, more than most altcoins in the space, is better placed to see more upside in its price action in the near term. This, because despite how it has performed over the past week, LINK’s fundamentals remain pretty strong.
Consider this – According to Glassnode, the top 1% of LINK addresses now hold over 84.44% of the altcoin’s supply, a 3-year high. This finding is a testament to the accumulation trend in the Chainlink market, one that underlines the confidence the market’s whales have in the alt’s long-term credentials.
Further, LINK’s Exchange Outflow Volume (7d MA) also touched an ATH of $3,753,855.00 recently, with the same suggesting that more and more people are now moving their crypto-assets off exchanges to HODL, with these unlikely to be sold anytime soon.
Here, it’s worth noting that in the past, whenever this metric has risen, the altcoin’s value has fallen on the charts immediately after. However, LINK’s price has also touched higher highs whenever recovery has ensued, meaning, this could be a sign to buy in.
Finally, the number of active LINK addresses also surged to a 1-month high in the last 48 hours, despite the general market bearishness another sign of there being a lot of optimism associated with the alt’s price performance.
It’s no wonder then that many in the community expect the cryptocurrency to reignite its rally in the near term, especially since traditionally, the cryptocurrency has maintained a lower correlation with the king coin, when compared to the likes of Ethereum and Litecoin. This, coupled with its strong fundamentals, might allow LINK to surge again, independent of the rest of the market.
Sign Up For Our Newsletter
Why April 20 is an important day for Dogecoin?
Venus (XVS) price aims for $100 amid rising TVL and surge in DeFi users
All Hands on Deck for IOTA’s Chrysalis 2.0, This Is What You Need to Know
Rothschild Investment Buys $4.75M in Shares of the Grayscale Ethereum Trust
Polkadot, Cosmos, Enjin Price Analysis: 18 April
Crypto users demand reinstatement of Pakistani government adviser following sudden resignation
$10 Billion in Liquidations as the Crypto Market Cap Evaporated $360B in Hours
Uniswap, Filecoin, VeChain Price Analysis: 19 April
COINQVEST and Anclap introduce inflation free cryptocurrency payment processing for Argentina
VeChain Mentioned in 2021 Forbes Blockchain 50, Parabolic Move In Sight?
Are we there yet? Here’s why one analyst says its not ‘altcoin season’
Uniswap Price Analysis: 17 April
Why A Central Bank of China Official Said Bitcoin Has Major Role in the Future
How r/WallStreetBets Triggered DOGE Rally – Reasons for Bitcoin Sell-off
SEC loses a battle to win the war? Ripple dissociates from pumping XRP
Polkadot Price Analysis: 18 April
India Is Scoring Big On The Crypto Front Despite Looming Government Crackdown
Bitcoin: ‘You’re definitely a moron if you sell in a bull run and try to buy back lower’
Bitcoin dips under $60,000 — What’s pulling down BTC price?
Coinbase frenzy, DOGE dazzles, Bitcoin breaks records, Jim Cramer sells: Hodler’s Digest, April 11–17
Blockchain1 week ago
By The Numbers: The Rate Bitcoin Must Climb To Reach $100K By July
Blockchain1 week ago
USDT, USDC, and BUSD represent 93% of stablecoin market cap
Blockchain1 week ago
Bitcoin’s time has come: TIME magazine to hold BTC on balance sheet
Blockchain1 week ago
NYSE celebrates historic ‘first trades’ with NFT series
Blockchain1 week ago
Whole Earth Coin (WEC) Set for IEO to Inject New Life Into Aging Infrastructure
Blockchain1 week ago
German digital stock exchange will list physical Litecoin ETP
Blockchain1 week ago
Boson Protocol concludes $25.8M public sale, token listed on exchanges
Blockchain1 week ago
Binance launches zero-commission tradable stock tokens