Token Sale Models, dYdX v4, Aztec Network, Mantle Network, zkSync Era, the CEX Landscape and Macro Updates| Nansen’s Research Roundup (10 June - 30 June)

Token Sale Models, dYdX v4, Aztec Network, Mantle Network, zkSync Era, the CEX Landscape and Macro Updates| Nansen’s Research Roundup (10 June - 30 June)

Comparing token sale models, analysis of dYdX v4, Aztec, and Mantle network, an update on zkSync Era, a thorough overview of the CEX landscape and macro updates, all in this week's roundup.

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Gm Nansen Explorers,

Welcome to this week's edition of Nansen's Weekly Research Roundup, where we bring you the latest research reports from our team. Lets dive in!

1. Comparing Token Sales' Models

Despite the burst of the ICO bubble in 2017, investment opportunities in these projects continue to be appealing for investors, boasting an average all-time ROI of 310% from the top launchpads. Xin Yi examines two prominent sales models - Dutch Auctions and Fair Launches - in detail. Analyzing the historical performance of tokens, it is observed that a majority of the tokens that were sold through Dutch Auctions remained profitable for investors a week after the token sale. Meanwhile, the Fair Launch model has shown mixed performance.

Comparing Token Sales' Models

2. dYdX v4: Redefining The DeFi Derivatives Landscape 

With Cosmos and v4, the dYdX team believes they can greatly increase its throughput, achieve decentralization of all aspects of the protocol, and greatly improve its tokenomics. Trading volume on dYdX far surpasses its DeFi counterparts and even that of some CEXs. Its average monthly derivatives volumes (since December 2022) exceed that of Deribit, Kraken, and Bitfinex. Osgur and Jake dive into dYdX and shed light on its current state, future architecture, challenges and risks to look out for. 

dYdX v4: Redefining The DeFi Derivatives Landscape

3. Aztec: a Hybrid Public-Private ZK-Rollup

Aztec is building a public-private hybrid ZK-Rollup (L2) that allows both public and private execution of smart contract logic while still inheriting the security benefit of Ethereum. On Aztec, privacy is an optionality rather than being required by default. Aztec's composability enables seamless interaction between public and private environments, including private-to-public function calls, allowing for novel applications with varying degrees of privacy. The Noir smart contract language by Aztec Labs simplifies dApp development with zero-knowledge proofs, abstracting ZK cryptography complexities for developers. Yohji offers a full breakdown of Aztec network and shares his thoughts on the upcoming ZK-Rollup. 

Aztec: a Hybrid Public-Private ZK-Rollup

4. Mantle Network: An Emerging Modular L2 Ecosystem

Mantle Network features a unique three-layer blockchain structure. Ethereum handles settlement and consensus, EigenDA ensures data availability, and Mantle Network serves as the execution layer. Incorporating Multi-Party Computation (MPC) and Threshold Signature Scheme (TSS), Mantle Network improves trust and reduces withdrawal challenges, providing a reliable and user-friendly experience. Mantle holds one of the largest on-chain treasuries, with BitDAO (now Mantle Treasury) having $3.25b in liquid assets, predominantly in BIT (78%), followed by ETH (13%), USDC (6.2%), and others. Sandra analyzes Mantle Network and provides her insights in the report. 

Mantle Network: An Emerging Modular L2 Ecosystem

5. zkSync Era: A Quick Update

Since covering zkSync in April 2023, the chain has seen exponential growth. The number of unique depositors has surpassed 1 million addresses and TVL has exceeded $650m. Jake found that most zkSync bridgers deposit in small amounts and depositing $1,000 will put you ahead of 84% of addresses. Around 85% of wallets were created within the last year, signaling most of the zkSync bridgers are fresh wallets. 

zkSync Era: A Quick Update

6. Decoding The CEX Landscape: An In-Depth Analysis of 2023 H1

The collapse of FTX and loss of customer funds significantly impacted users' trust in CEXs. Users now demand more transparency and protection measures from exchanges. Many exchanges have started offering Proof of Reserves. Others, such as Binance and Bitget, increased their protection funds. Osgur and Yohji did a thorough rundown of the current CEX landscape and future trends we can expect to see in the space. 

Decoding The CEX Landscape: An In-Depth Analysis of 2023 H1

7. “Stubborn” inflation and implication for markets

Central bank and market’s narratives are changing (again): the scenario of a recession is being pushed back and inflation is surprisingly “stubborn”. This creates non-linear effects, whereby monetary policy (outside of Asia) remains more restrictive for longer, and in turn, becomes an increasing headwind for risk assets. Shallow BTC sell-offs and ongoing decrease in crypto implied volatility tell us that a lot of regulatory and macro bad news are already priced in. Aurelie shares her thoughts on the current macro environment and key data points to look at.

“Stubborn” inflation and implication for markets

That's a wrap for this week! If there's anything you'd like to see in future issues, just let us know. Follow us on Telegram to get notifications when reports go live or head to our Research Portal to get more insights.


The authors of this content and members of Nansen may be participating or invested in some of the protocols or tokens mentioned herein. The foregoing statement acts as a disclosure of potential conflicts of interest and is not a recommendation to purchase or invest in any token or participate in any protocol. Nansen does not recommend any particular course of action in relation to any token or protocol. The content herein is meant purely for educational and informational purposes only and should not be relied upon as financial, investment, legal, tax or any other professional or other advice. None of the content and information herein is presented to induce or to attempt to induce any reader or other person to buy, sell or hold any token or participate in any protocol or enter into, or offer to enter into, any agreement for or with a view to buying or selling any token or participating in any protocol. Statements made herein (including statements of opinion, if any) are wholly generic and not tailored to take into account the personal needs and unique circumstances of any reader or any other person. Readers are strongly urged to exercise caution and have regard to their own personal needs and circumstances before making any decision to buy or sell any token or participate in any protocol. Observations and views expressed herein may be changed by Nansen at any time without notice. Nansen accepts no liability whatsoever for any losses or liabilities arising from the use of or reliance on any of this content.

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