Indexed Growth Committee: Investing in the Growth of Indexed

Summary:

This post outlines a framework for funding Indexed ecosystem development with grants from the Indexed Treasury. The proposal is largely modelled on a similar proposal in the Uniswap community which has been carefully crafted by several prominent investors and community figures in the DeFi space.

The scope of the program encompasses anything that helps the project—sponsoring hackathons or gitcoin bounties for example, media sponsorships and community competitions — anything is fair game. Eventually it could fund (with renewals approved by governance) core protocol development.

Grant administration is a subjective process that cannot be easily automated, and thus we propose a nimble committee of 6 members —1 lead and 5 reviewers—to deliver an efficient, predictable process to applicants, such that funding can be administered without having to put each application to a vote. We propose the program start with a cap of US$100,000 + 10,000 NDX for the first quarter - a sum that we believe is appropriate for an initial pilot - renewable or adjustable after each quarter.

Anyone can become a part of the committee.

Purpose

The mission of the Indexed Growth Committee (IGC) is to identify and pursue opportunities which help to grow the Indexed ecosystem. These can be inbound requests or opportunities proactively pursued by the committee. The point is: to get more people involved in the growth of the project it is crucial to have a single point of contact responsible for filtering and reviewing the work proposals.

Quarterly Budget

Max quarterly budget of up to US$250,000

Budget and caps to be assessed every six months

6 committee members: 1 lead and 5 reviewers

Each committee has a term of 2 quarters (6 months/one epoch), after which the program needs to be renewed by NDX governance

Committee functions as a 4 of 6 multi-signature Gnosis

While the goals and priorities of the grant program will be thoroughly discussed and reviewed by the community through public discourse, the decision to start IGC by operating as a small committee is to ensure that the application and decision process will be efficient and predictable, so applicants have clear objectives and timely decisions.

Since the scope of the opportunities will be quite broad - from more technical matters to marketing activities - we’ll strive to bring in committee members with diverse backgrounds.

The grants program should be administered by a single lead.

Here I propose myself, having led most of the growth efforts to this point.

The other 5 committee members should be thought of as “reviewers” — Indexed community members who will keep the grants program functional by ensuring I am leading effectively and, of course, not absconding with funds.

Part of the reviewers job is to hold the program accountable for success (defined below) and/or return any excess funds to the Indexed treasury. Reviewers are not compensated as part of this proposal as we expect their time commitment to be minimal. Compensation for the lead role is discussed below, as we expect this to be a labor intensive role.

At this point we don’t want to suggest any “reviewers” as we’d like to see applications coming from the community. If you would like to become a reviewer, please nominate yourself in this thread or contact any member of the core team via Discord or Twitter.

Nominations should include why you’re suited for the reviewer job and ideally also what ideas you bring to the table. The best nominations will be moved to an off-chain poll.

Methodology

1.1 Budget
This proposal recommends a max cap of US$100,000 + 10,000 NDX per quarter, with the ability to reevaluate biannually at each epoch (two fiscal quarters). While the IGC will be the decision makers around individual grants, respective budgets, roadmaps, and milestones, any top-level changes to the IGC including epochs and max cap, will require full community quorum (4% approval).

The IGC will be funded by the Indexed treasury according to the release schedule set out by the Indexed team.

1.2 Grant Application Process
Grant applications to the IGC need to be submitted publicly in the forum. We will create a new “Grant” category for this purpose which is where all applications need to be submitted. Applications must be well-written and contain all the relevant information such as price, scope of the proposal, timeline, benefits etc. so that the committee and the community have all the information at hand.

In rare circumstances, if the committee reaches out proactively to a service provider and wants to keep it private for competitive reasons, it is acceptable to publish the proposal afterwards.

1.3 Committee Compensation
Operating a successful grants program takes considerable time and effort.

The lead should be compensated for their time. The reviewers will not be compensated for their time as we project that the commitment will be minimal to start (2-5hrs).

We propose the lead be compensated US$75/hr capped at 10 hours/week. This compensation, along with the quarterly budget, will be allocated to the IGC multisig from the NDX treasury. In keeping with the committee’s commitment to the community, hours and duties will be logged publicly and transparently.

2.1 Priorities
Initially, the program aims to start narrow in scope, funding peripheral ecosystem initiatives, such as targeted bounties, education material, tooling & dashboards, media sponsorships, and other low-stakes means of building out the Indexed brand & ecosystem. Over time, if the program proves effective, the grant allocations can grow in scope to include, for example, listings on centralized exchanges, integrations into other dApps and eventually core protocol development.

2.2 KPIS
With the initial priorities in mind, some effective measures for quick successes might look like:

  • Total number of initiatives funded

  • Quarterly increase in applications

  • Project engagement post-event/funding (no of holders, TVL etc.)

  • Overall community engagement/sentiment

2.3 Timeline
The grants program will be managed on a quarterly basis and reviews every two quarters.

After each quarter the program will be required to submit progress and the committee will be required to report on key metrics to the community.

Conclusion

If a team of qualified reviewers are found and there are no major objections from the community this will move to a vote on Snapshot. If the proposal passes on Snapshot, the committee will be created and IGC will start accepting applications on a rolling basis starting April 2021.

This program is meant to be the simplest possible MVP of a Indexed Ecosystem Grants initiative. While the multi-sig committee comes with trust assumptions about the members, our hope is the community will approve this limited engagement to get the ball rolling in an efficient structure. After the two quarters the burden of proof will be on IGC to show empirical evidence that the program is worth continuing in its existing form and will submit to governance to renew treasury funding.

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This is really cool! Cant wait to see how the community grows after this.

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Interesting proposal, agree that treasury should be used to invest in the protocol’s growth !

How would one apply to take part in the reviewing process?

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Just commenting here. Take a look at the Sigma nomination thread for inspiration:

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hey litocoen,
hey NDX lovers.
I would be interested to join the reviewer team.

My name is Fabian and i fell in love with crypto 2016, although my first contacts where much earlier. When i dont troll on CT i usually work in the marketing world. I have co-founded (and still run) multiple very successful european startups (Pepper.com, Holidaypirates.group and others).

I started with Bitcoin but only after understood what Ethereum actually means in 2016 i fell in love with the idea of crypto and went down into the rabbit hole. As an entrepeneur myself I often had the possibility to meet some of the teams behind the projects and i often realised that not only the technology would be the issue, but also building the teams/company and finally marketing the products. Having believed DEX will be the big gamechanger i followed the ones wanting to build this back in 2016, not many are really still around (0x a bit of the exception here), but I kind of lost sight a little bit of it and only joined back in only early 2020 when the DeFI “game” really started. I wasn’t super late but also not super early to the party - from YFI to Based to YAM to Sushi - all of it was loads of fun :slight_smile:

But being based in Germany we like risk-averse investments (just kidding) and after finding $DEGEN I stumbled upon Indexed Finance. I thought the idea is amazing, but as always the devil is in the detail and I think I can help, so I thought I should reach out and look how I can contribute.

In the past 12 years i have built 5 businesses from the ground up without external investors to reasonable large businesses.

My main business is Pepper.com - a shopping community in 12 countries. Currently over 250 people work here with the mission to help consumers make better buying decisions. Here I’m the CEO.

The other larger business you might know is Holidaypirates - a travel deal site with currently around 100 people (thanks Covid :frowning: ) which tries to help people find the best travel deals and enable travels they wouldnt have believed possible for that budget. Here I’m the Chairman of the Board.

Both businesses have grown without external funding mainly with community building and “growth-hacks” to great businesses. Sadly my time is limited, but I spend so much time in crypto anyhow, so I would love to share some of my knowledge and hopefully help NDX grow even further.

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To be honest I’m not entirely sure what questions I should be asking of a reviewer, but my biggest concern with Indexed right now is with marketing and providing new users with easy to digest information surrounding the project.

How do you think Indexed could improve in this aspect and potentially gain a wider audience?

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Honestly, using the project right now is still super hard so I potentially would not target the normal endcustomer. Sadly we are still too far away from easy usability. If it was up to me first I would think about what the targetgroup of the marketing should be - to me it is high networth individuals who know and use crypto but are mostly holding BTC/ETH and thus totally miss out on the growth opportunity of DeFI. I think potentially it would be interesting to position it as a ETF Alternative - i think the analogy is easy enough to understand and would be much easier to attract people who want exposure to those assets but are not willing to invest hours just to trade all the assets needed to build a similar portfolio / let alone rebelance them.

So i think 2 first things are whats the target group and what is the “product” you are selling (so positioning - which i fully agree with you is still to complex and to be blunt still has quite a few issues to work out in the coming months).

But thats just my2cents

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I am for this proposal!

I am also for the proposal.

I agree, but this this is too general. Targeting people who just want an index fund will put you in competition with larger competitors like Index Cooperative and their very well known and sleek $DPI offering, among others. That is where the typical high net worth individual who wants an index fund will go. Why go to the smaller Indexed Finance? We need to create a niche so we stand out.

Fortunately, we are smaller and more flexible. I think the way forward is to build on what we’ve done with DEGEN. My guess is many of us are here because of that. DEGEN has personality, it has an influential supporter (RedPhoneCrypto) who can attract users. She (he?) is why I’m here, why I’ve invested in an index fund at Indexed Finance, staked, etc. We need to really grow this program, add more “sponsors” like RedPhoneCrypto with their own unique fund. This will bring something different to crypto and index funds, give each of our offerings personality, and generate buzz. That way we are not just another “me too” offering.

I would recommend the following:

1 - With DEGEN, we need to do more. The start was fantastic, but we are missing a place to go to discuss and debate the 10 projects in DEGEN. Discord is probably not the right place, or at least not the way it’s set up now. We need to get RedPhoneCrypto involved and tweeting about the conversations happening at this designated site around DEGEN. The discussion should not be “How do I connect my Metamask” or “How do I stake DEGEN?” It should be about the 10 specific projects that make up DEGEN, e.g. why OCEAN is doing well or doing poorly, why RUNE is different from REN and what this means for long term appreciation, which alternate project should be chosen when the first token reaches 2 billion market cap and is removed, etc., etc. Perhaps we can bet on which will be first, using a betting site? This debate and discussion will generate more interest in DEGEN and bring more people to Indexed Finance.

2 - We need to add more projects like DEGEN with personality! Perhaps find influential personalities who would like to manage their own offering on Indexed Finance. I’ve mentioned already Mark Cuban and Raul Pal as two potential candidates who I believe might be interested. We can approach others. they would bring their large following to Indexed Finance through their new fund, and we grow the platform.

Obviously each new Sigma project should address a niche or have an interesting narrative so the fund has real personality. We don’t need 10 funds like DEGEN. For example, if Pal participated, I would ask him to find TradFi killers - 10 projects (tokens) that he believes can totally disrupt traditional finance. He has one foot in the door of both, he’s perfect for something like that. But each index fund should have a very specific niche. Not just “top 5 oracles,” because that’s a bit boring. Let Index Cooperative do that. We are Indexed Finance, we create funds with real personality!

But once this new fund launches, again, we need a site or place where people can come to debate this fund, too. If it’s Pal who “sponsors” this new fund, he should commit to come by and post things occasionally. Otherwise, we’ll have a lot of interest in the beginning, but then it will fade. We must maintain real engagement around the projects that make up the index!

3 - I think marketing should be around these funds first, and Idexed Finance second. Let’s build up DEGEN and other exciting offerings, that is what will bring people to our sight. And as we have more interesting offerings over time, these new users will stay and look around at what else looks interesting and hopefully invest in more funds.

To summarize, we need a niche. We are smaller and more flexible than the bigger players. Building on the Sigma program is the way to go. Let’s bring in more quality sponsors like RedPhoneCrypto with new funds that address a specific niche. And let’s keep the interest up by building a site where people can debate the fund’s projects, performance, make bets, etc. Really build a community around each fund!

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It’s awesome to see you commenting here. As a german citizen myself I am well aware of your successes with Pepper.com and would love working with you on Indexed growth’s.

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This is good stuff! I totally agree. I think we are more agile and like experimenting with new indices.

However, it’s important to be successful with our two core indices as well. The more AUM these have the more likely it is that they will be listed on a centralized exchange! So we need to strike the right balance here.

RE a place to discuss: what do you suggest? I think this is something where you or anyone in the community can jump in and become an advocate for a specific index e.g DEGEN.

The core team is small!

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Fully agree with alot of the points you made as well @DeFi_Whiskey

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Hi NDX Fam,

I’d like to nominate myself to the grants committee. I’ve been a small holder of NDX, DEFI5 and CC10 at various levels for a few months. Indexed.Finance caught my eye early in my adoption of DeFI and I have been following closely ever since.

I love the community spirit behind DeFi and am looking for more ways to get involved and build experience, skills and knowledge. Something great about DeFi in general is how much you can learn with research, asking questions and getting involved. So it is in that spirit of getting involved and learning that I am nominating myself.

Professionally I am an accountant (Accounting Manager is my title) for a Louisiana (USA) headquartered company that does specialty contract work. We do about 100-200m in revenue per year. I am also on the board of a local non-profit and have served as treasurer and president.
In the crypto and DeFi space I am looking to start a local DeFi investment company for my friends/family locally with the goals of creating a track record of successful DeFi investing. I also have other potential business ideas in the areas of DeFi coaching/education and corporate treasury management. I will not be soliciting NDX community members, or anyone else on discord for investments, don’t worry.

My general philosophy is that if DeFi can lower the barriers to enter, we can onboard so many new users. When I talk to people about DeFi I’m learning more and more about what reservations everyday people have. On the committee with NDX I would look to try and help address those reservations. So while I think we need to compete with similar products, I think current adoption is so low that at least part of our efforts should be around people brand new to DeFi.

An example of something I would like to allocate resources to would be the continued development of user guides, FAQs, and tutorials on various mediums. I think a youtube channel (either official or not) and general youtube content would be a nice feature. Imagine a video tutorial or welcome message from founders, devs, signma committee etc linked in the discord, website, etc all shareable to various social media outlets and things. New users need to be confident in what they are doing and need their hands held for their first few steps.

Another example of an idea for resources would be a part time development manager. This could start small and grow with KPIs or something, but I know there are protocols/labs out there that have created this position (Compound for one). This person could overtime be approved to make presentations at conferences (virtual/in person), create networking opportunities for the core team, and in general find ways to promote NDX and the Indexes.

To close, I’m sure there will be community members with a lot more DeFi experience or potentially more helpful skills etc, but I’m offering up my services. I would be open to the overall NDX community and happily keep people up to date as requested on the workings of the committee. I would also bring my “average Joe” experience in the cryto/DeFi space to the committee. I feel like there are a lot of people in my demographic that will be a great target audience for the NDX product.

Thanks for your consideration (sorry for the length). I’m looking forward to the progress of this proposal and the NDX community and product! I’m happy to take any questions in discord or here on forum.

Cheers,
Buck

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I should add a couple of points:

1 - DEGEN has a separate Discord channel, and this is definitely the way to go in my opinion. Have it obtain some kind of “official” status (if it doesn’t already) through the main Indexed Finance site, e.g. an official link, etc. But discussions about DEGEN and individual projects within DEGEN should happen at that dedicated channel. I think all funds should have the same. If a fund cannot generate community interest and regular engagement, why did we do the fund in the first place!?

2 - DEGEN also has metrics that can be found here: https://ndx.holdings/. This is fantastic work, whoever did this, great job! I would only modify it so each project has their own dedicated link for results. I like the idea of one general page like this for all ndx projects. But DEGEN should have its own one-page summary that only has info on DEGEN.

Also, the results should show performance of each project since being added to DEGEN. That is what is relevant. Currently it only shows daily movements (24 hour). This is also good info, but if we can add historical performance from the day it was added, that would be fantastic. That, after all, is what’s important to DEGEN investors. If RUNE is up 9000% since inception, and 10% over the past 24 hours, great! But if RUNE is down 12% since being added to DEGEN, that is not great for DEGEN investors… :slight_smile: This is what we should be able to monitor and display.

Finally, each project should be compared to the DeFi “Top 10” (CC10) to show relative performance.
If DEGEN is up 40% over since inception, but CC10 is up 50% since the day DEGEN began, then DEGEN has not kept up with baseline performance of a basket of DeFi standard projects. But overall, the metrics at https://ndx.holdings/ are very well done and a great first step!

3 - With a dedicated Discord channel and easy to follow metrics, I’m really hoping we’ll see a bit of competition over the projects within DEGEN, which will encourage friendly discourse, and discourse across different funds. Let’s create a place where RUNE and REN supporters (and hopefully DEGEN holders) can meet and debate. Let’s also see some friendly debate between Sigma projects! So as more DEGEN type projects are added, we drive more discourse, more competition, and more interest in other projects.

4 - Perhaps some marketing funds could be used to support betting markets around each project, and between projects? For example, which DEGEN project (token within the index) will hit 2 billion market cap and be the first to be taken out of DEGEN? Which CC10 project will see the largest % rise over 2021? Which ndx fund will see the largest % growth in 2021? These betting markets will add more interest in our funds, drive more engagement!

Overall, I am super excited about the potential here. I’m an index fund investor in TradFi (mainly through Vanguard), and strongly believe Index fund investing will be the main way people allocate capital to DeFi over time. But it’s critical we find our own niche within this space. Happy to do more to help make this happen any way I can!

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Thank you for the positive encouragement about the https://ndx.holdings site, it is greatly appreciated. I think everything you suggested in terms of additions of analytics on the site is great. I have been in the process of locating resources to accomplish some of this. It may start slow, with mouseovers of the underlying assets displaying more detail, but still something that is quick and easy to digest. One of my primary goals with the site was to focus on ease of use and to present the project, and DeFi as a whole really, in a way that would be accessible and understandable to newer investors to the space. To that end, in addition to the extra chart details, I am hoping to create some brief graphical representations and instructions on how to obtain the index tokens. I want https://ndx.holdings to be a place where new and current investors can see what encompasses the whole project at a quick glance, and also to give them the knowledge to make the trades/swaps necessary to get in on the action.

I am always open to any new ideas from people in this wonderful community and thank you again to DeFi_Whiskey for sharing theirs. PS. Your username is 2 of my fav. things. :slight_smile:

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Hello, my fellow degens,

Here is my claim to support Lito’s work in growing this community.

My name is Gregoire. I’m a 26 years old Belgian living in Berlin.

I am currently the head of growth of Oiler Network (a derivative protocol to trade blockchain native characteristics if you’re interested, don’t hesitate to read into this medium post.

I have been trading since I’m 18 (FX and Commodities mostly and a bit of stock) and have been active in crypto since late 2016 when I realised that my friends were having crazy fun trading in this space.

As one can imagine, I ended up falling down the rabbit hole when they introduced me to it. I read Bitcoin’s white paper and got stuck thinking that this was one of the most brilliant things I had ever read.

In 2017, I finished my bachelor in law school and started building my first startup. Ultimately failed and ended up working at the UN on the topic of blockchain with a focus on SDG9 (infrastructure).

I then decided to join a business school to learn more about how to build a company, while working at the same time in FinTech and building a media focused on crypto.

At the end of summer 2020, I accepted a job in traditional venture capital, believing that this was the right move for me. But as time passed, I kept having the feeling that I was missing out.

An itch had to be scratched and this is why I ended up joining Tomasz to work on Oiler Network.

On the side of Oiler, I am still actively trading and investing in startups with a focus on Web3 and DeFi.

My strength lies in my understanding of financial assets, whether they are old or new and the connections I have made along the way.

Having three hats in this ecosystem enables me to stay on top of all the innovations happening and studying all opportunities and paths projects can take.

Being an active investor, trader, and the head of growth of a DeFi company, I’m hands-on in my approach to supporting a project through its growth and product development.

I believe that my experience and network will enable me to support rightfully Lito and the team in their work to grow Indexed’s community.

What I love about indexes, in general, is their ability to enable less technical users to have a wider exposure to more projects and therefore lower their risks.

I first read the little book of common sense investing by John C Bogle (inventor of the first Index funds, the Vanguard Group) when I was 19 and I’ve shared it with all my friends when they made their debuts in the stock market.

It’s simple and utterly brilliant when you think about it. Why even bother trying to beat the market when you can become the market?

What’s absolutely great about Indexed compare to the rest of the other crypto indexes is the fact that the rebalancing is done on-chain. Governance does not intervene and this is to my eyes one of the many reasons why Indexed is superior to the rest of the available products.

Also, when compared to the rest of the teams building Indexes, Indexed has had the best execution and ability to deploy highly demanded indexes and, therefore, enabling users to have access to more and diversified products.

For the following reasons, I think that I’d be a good fit to support Indexed’s team in their journey.

Cheers,

Greg

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I wrote this up before the community call - it was great to hear about some of the different roles the team members are playing. So looks like business development manager is already taken care of! Keep up the great work @litocoen !

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Hello Litocoen & Indexed friends.

I’m interested in helping this project through the reviewer team.

I’m Jeddi (@antinertia) a growth expert and entrepreneur.

Born in belgium, raised in Sicily and living in Paris.

As a pro background, I worked for few startups in Europe as a growth lead, launched, grew from 0 to $500k & sold an ecom as a solo-founder & joined Thefamily.co as their growth expert. I helped 200+ startups through office hours for 1 year.

Now I help entrepreneur as an independent coach, 40+ per month and I’m getting paid for that.

I co-host a french podcast on business & investment.
I also co-manage an ecom & NFT project named sushinft on twitter. Dropping merchandising & NFT on top of Sushi brand.

As a curious mind & investor, I started to invest in crypto 8 years ago (bought my first BTC at $220, damn I want to cry)

Missed a lot of opportunities and back on track since beginning 2020 as a farmer & degen.

I’m also into stocks, ETF and early stage startup investing.

I’m a Indexed user & often try to explain how indexed works to friends & family. Almost onboarded my gf for her first investment, almost!

As a growth dude in startup world, I’m more focus on community building, acquisition & retention in B2C markets, marketplaces & DTC.

I’d be more than happy to help you Litocoen.

There’s few point to clarify imo:

  • Who’s your target? Your ideal customer?
  • Then, based on your ideal customer, does he understand what’s indexed?
  • Where your target is? What he listen, read,… what’s important for them? how can you reach them? Through what channel & what kind of wording?
  • There’s certainly some User tests to run: how your target understand the interface? A friend new into crypto, with a low/mid risk profile was so afraid to use your interface even if he understood what you were doing & was ready to jump in a crypto index. Why?
  • Great Growth = Loops, not funnels. How can you build a a virtuous growth loop?

Well, a bunch of things to test. I’d be happy to help you :slight_smile:

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Hi all, dear community,

I would be interested to join the Growth Committee.

My name is Jascha and I’m a founding partner at Greenfield One, an early-stage crypto fund in Berlin. We are early investors in projects like 1inch, IDLE Finance, StakeWise, Sovryn, Vega Protocol, Arweave, NEAR and others. As a firm, we have a very governance-centric thesis and view on the space – we believe that crypto in many aspects is much more a social experiment than just yet another technological revolution. For those of you who are interested, we published a pretty extensive governance thesis almost a year ago (on Arweave).

My background is in mobile technology – in 2009 I was the co-founder of a company called apprupt, a mobile advertising platform for app developers and later on brands. In 2014 we were acquired by Opera Software, the browser company, which was how I got into crypto during my 2.5yrs at the company. After I left Opera, I went full-time into crypto, started investing and helped co-found Flux Protocol, an open data protocol and on-chain oracle on NEAR.

In 2018 I got together with my partner Sebastian and our head of research Felix to start Greenfield One. We write early checks and like to be active participants in the networks that we invest in, as such I serve in a similar function to the Sovryn community as part of the treasury / exchequer committee.

I’m pretty excited about Indexed and would love to join the Growth Committee and collaborate more closely with the project.

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