DeFi is one of the blockchain world’s hottest spaces.
And for good reason — decentralized finance promises to expand access to savings, lending, asset management and other financial services previously unavailable to millions of people worldwide.
ICON, too, has a blossoming DeFi ecosystem. Let’s take a quick look at some* of the projects happening in the ICON DeFi space.
*Some is the operative word. We know we’re leaving a lot out.
Balanced bills itself as the “decentralized bank of ICON.”
The DeFi platform lets ICX holders take out loans, swap assets and supply liquidity. Like many other DeFi solutions, the platform offers users much higher returns than traditional banks.
In particular, Balanced offers users five types of rewards: staking rewards, loan rewards, liquidity rewards, network fees and liquidation rewards.
Users who take out loans or contribute to the liquidity pool earn Balance Tokens, which they can stake to receive a share of the network fees as well as voting rights.
Worried about the volatility of ICX? Balanced has a service for you, too:
“ICX can be volatile, so Balanced uses it as collateral to create a stable currency: Balanced Dollars (bnUSD). Tied to the value of the US Dollar, it’s ideal for payments, grants, and in-app purchases for services using the ICON blockchain – no KYC required.”
If Balanced is ICON’s decentralized bank, Omm is ICON’s decentralized money market.
Like traditional money markets, Omm is a great place to go for short-term funding or immediate liquidity, and retail investors can take advantage of high interest rates.
Unlike traditional money markets, though, Omm operates as a community owned DAO. It’s a money market run by the people, for the people.
Omm allows anyone to lend or borrow digital assets and earn interest. It’s also incredibly simple to use. It includes the Bridge wallet as an easy sign-in option and fiat on/off ramp — meaning you can use plain old US dollars to take out a loan.
ICX HODLers can also use Omm to borrow stablecoins against their ICX while continuing to earn staking rewards. Borrowers and supplies can also earn OMM tokens to gain governance rights.
Back in December, ICON announced an integration with the decentralized Inter-Blockchain Communication protocol Orbit Bridge.
According to the announcement:
“This integration brings more value to the ICON Network, specifically its DeFi ecosystem, by bridging assets between different blockchains and bringing more economic activity to the Network. Traders can now take advantage of arbitrage opportunities, and DeFi projects built on ICON can now enable the borrowing and lending of assets across different networks and bridges. Ultimately, this all leads to more transactions and more value exchange on the ICON Network.”
ICON has since become an origination chain in Orbit Bridge, which means ICON users can now “bridge tokens including ICX directly from the ICON chain to other chains connected to Orbit Bridge.”
Some readers might wonder how something like Orbit Bridge will fit into ICON once BTP rolls out. ICON apparently envisions both bridges to operate simultaneously — Rhizome breaks down why this is good for ICON and its users.
Optimus is an on-chain yield optimizer that connects with your Balanced and Omm accounts to maximize your investment returns while minimizing risk. More information about Optimus will be released very soon — watch this space.
Speaking of BTP, the general purpose interoperability protocol that will be coming standard on ICON 2.0 means big things for DeFi:
“BTP is a general purpose interoperability protocol, however, it will come standard on ICON 2.0 with a specific initial use case in mind. ICON will be supporting interoperability with other public blockchains in order to support cross-chain DeFi solutions. At launch, the ICON Foundation will deploy all necessary smart contracts on high-profile blockchains and will also run the relayers, however, any individual or group may run a private relayer with their own fee system.”
YDragon x ICON Hyperconnect
In August, cross-chain index ecosystem YDragon announced a partnership with ICON P-Rep ICON Hyperconnect.
YDragon explained the deal:
“This exciting collaboration will allow us to explore a cross-chain DeFi index for the ICON ecosystem. Following a number of successful and upcoming launches, ICON is looking to expand its DeFi suite, so this ICON Hyperconnect x YDragon makes for a great pairing.”