Exploring the Solana Ecosystem | CoinGecko Virtual Meetup #14

by Stephanie Goh

Solana is a fast, secure, and censorship resistant blockchain that is providing the open infrastructure required for global adoption. We took a deep dive into the Solana Ecosystem in our recent Virtual Meetup #14 on 21 July 2021 @ 9PM EST.

In this meetup, we talked to Ming Ng (Co-Lead of Mercurial Finance), George Harrap (Co-founder of Step Finance), and Anatoly Yakovenko (Founder and CEO of Solana). 

CoinGecko’s Virtual Meetup is our live online community event where we explore different key topics in the crypto sphere and invite industry leaders to share their two satoshis.

In our discussion, we talked about the advantages, community, and the future of Solana. 

Here is a quick breakdown of what we discussed with Ming, George, and Anatoly.

Why did you choose to build on Solana? 

Ming highlighted three benefits of having Mercurial Finance on Solana. Firstly, he says that, “Solana is one of the chains that takes a distinguished approach to scalability and building.” Other than that, he is excited to evolve the design pattern and be part of an ecosystem that is long term, has a unique community, and a team of great developers. 

Meanwhile, it was the, “Focus on being that place that people can come to,” and “Getting in the base level of something that can grow,” that were the advantages for George. 

Where do you see the demands and use cases of Solana for the next few years?

While a lot of what Solana does touches on finance, Anatoly believes that the, “Future of Solana is headed towards a social network with an awesome community, culture to it, and people that are building stuff.”

Ming added that, “The important thing of Solana is the community that is willing to try new things.”

How did FTX and Solana end up working together?

Anatoly explained that it was a mutual process. “Back then they were a small exchange who wanted to build the best DEX in the world forever and when we showed them our product, it clicked for all their engineers and that’s what got them excited,” he added.

Are there any decentralized bridges that are available?

Ren and Wormhole are two active bridges that Anatoly pointed out before adding that, “I think of bridges as decentralized custody solutions.” Ming agreed and thinks of bridging as custody rather than transferring.

Hopping in, George explained that, “People think that a bridge will transfer everything over and that it will work but there are bridges that are struggling with liquidity.”

What do we need to do to promote transparency on bridges?

Looking back, George talked about how, “Back in the day there was proof of reserve and exchanges were competing to prove it. I think the best way is to have that again to act as the transparency page.”

Do you think the professional market makers are a big differentiating factor?

While professional market makers are extremely good at high volatility or high volume things, Ming believes that they won’t touch bridges and liquidity will likely come from users. “Market makers will come in when there’s a big enough spread.”

Will NFTs be a thing on Solana?

According to George, “It’s totally going to be a thing and I think gaming is also where it’s going. Solana is really poised to make NFTs a better experience.” 

Anatoly added that Metaplex feels like it’s blowing up with a bunch of homegrown artists and he hopes to see more of these platforms break out. 

What is the plan for Mercurial to partner with Terra?

“We collaborated with the Terra team to put up a co-liquidity mining proposal to their community which aims to work on three things.” Ming clarified that the liquidity, education, and adoption are very important and he thinks there is a big opportunity to get the community engaged.

What kind of metrics do you use internally to measure success?

George started off by sharing that, “One of the core things is daily user interaction. We want to bring users in and keep their attention. It’s about building a valuable product that people want to use.” 

For Anatoly, it’s all about building a censorship resistant piece that will attract users. One way to measure this is the number of teams that are running and launching on Solana. 

Ming concludes the conversation by saying that, “Total Volume Locked (TVL) is both a useless and useful metric because it shows how many people trust the product enough to put their money in.” 

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Stephanie Goh

Stephanie Goh

Stephanie is a Public Relations Specialist at CoinGecko who is enthusiastic about food, animals, and learning more about the cryptoverse. Follow the author on Twitter @StephanieGoh7 Follow the author on Twitter @StephanieGoh7

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