Proposal: Unlocking Perp Tokens for Growth

Background

First off, before I dive into this proposal I just want to first thank everyone for their support to date - the team and I have been blown away by the amount of help we’ve received, from our super supportive investors to our fanatic community (as an aside we still need a name to call ourselves, I’m almost tempted to put out a bounty for this) it wouldn’t have been possible without you all.

When we launched we had specified that there would be a large number of tokens that would be dedicated to the ecosystem (see https://docs.perp.fi/getting-started/perp-tokens). In this proposal we are seeking feedback from the community around our plan to tap into these tokens in order to help supercharge growth.

We’re currently almost at 1 billion dollars in trading volume (yes with a B, also check out this if you haven’t already, there’s a nice prize for the trader that does the magical 1B trade: https://twitter.com/perpprotocol/status/1353708175829069825) and we’ve been hitting on average 30M in trading volume daily. All of this has been achieved to date without any incentives.

Our Goal

We have a very big goal in mind that we want to hit within the next 6-12 months, and that is to be the top decentralised derivatives exchange. We want to 10x our daily trading volume from 30M to 300M a day - and we believe this can be done.

Given we have already been hitting significant volumes without incentives, you can imagine what it will look like when we supercharge the exchange with them.

The Ask

We are asking for the community to unlock 20.5M PERP which are to be spent in the following ways:

  1. Rewards: this includes both transaction mining and staking
  2. Strategic Partners: continue to bring on key strategic partners that will help grow
  3. Bounties program: a continuation of https://bounties.perp.fi/ in which we are able to build out the PERP ecosystem rapidly
  4. DEX Liquidity: provide greater liquidity in AMMs such that the PERP token price stabilises

The Details

Rewards

The Ask: 13M PERP

The majority of PERP we expect to be allocated to the rewards program in order for us to hit the lofty goal of 300M daily trading volume. Whilst we don’t know the exact design of the program yet we believe that it will follow some form of experimentation outlined below:

Run some form of pilot experiment over a short period of time to understand the impacts. For example we may run something similar to transaction mining (see early proposal here: https://gov.perp.fi/t/wip-liquidity-mining-rewards/17/5) for a 4 week period and see what impact it has. If we find that it 2x volume then maybe we can double the spend and keep montoring. If it doesn’t work then we can opt to try a different model

Given that 13M PERP is a lot of tokens to be released onto market we are proposing to have a 4M USDC equivalent weekly cap. This was calculated by taking the average weekly transaction volume of the PERP token (not the exchange) which was ~50M. This should limit the impact on the token price itself. Additionally, the plan is to have vesting in place for some portion of tokens that is earned through these rewards.

The biggest key note here is that we actually are trying to not spend everything. This is a super important point as we really want to be experimenting and only doubling down on the winners.

Strategic Partnerships

The Ask: 3M PERP

Our current investors and partners have been super supportive to us and have supported us in a variety of ways. We believe that strategic partnerships combined with the other 3 items will be a key pillar to help us achieve the goal of 300M daily trading volume. What we are currently looking for with strategic partners include:

  • Deep networks: the ability to make meaningful introductions to both companies and protocols as well as the ability to source and recruit exceptional talent. One key focus area is the ability to bring institutional players and centralised exchanges to the table
  • Deep expertise: as you’d expect there are a lot of intricacies in building out a derivatives exchange product - we need as much help as we can get here. From security insights to protocol design we are looking for partners who have deep expertise in these areas
  • Proven ability to be a partner: we are looking for partners who have proven to be supportive over a longer time horizon and aren’t just looking to buy and dump in a short time period.

It is important to note here that these strategic partnerships may take the form of OTC sales with a discount however any such sale will always include vesting. This is to incentivise long term thinking rather than short term thinking

Bounties Program

The Ask: 500K PERP

As the end goal is to be a fully decentralised organisation, the ideal situation is where there is no concept of a “core” team vs “contributors”. The bounty program is a very good first step to getting there. Passionate contributors to Perpetual Protocol are able to be rewarded such that we are able to retain the best talent in the space.

We have seen so many talented individuals and teams apply for the limited number of bounties we have currently listed and so would love to increase this even more

Again, all bounties will be vested for any amount greater than 10K USDC equivalent

DEX Liquidity

The Ask: 4M PERP

A concern that has been brought up from the community before has been that as staking starts PERP holders are incentivised to move their tokens into staking which will reduce the amount of liquidity available.

We propose putting in 4M PERP into the actual pools themselves such that the liquidity that leaves for staking will be replaced. Depending on which pool we choose (uni, sushi, balancer) the aim is to concentrate the liquidity to provide a lower slippage for those wanting to hold PERP tokens.

For example, if staking starts and we see that 1M liquidity leaves the current Balancer pool and is staked then we could take 1M PERP and inject this back into the Balancer pool, thus stabilising the price and reducing slippage

Reporting

As part of keeping transparency we will aim to write up a report every 4-6 months to detail how much was spent as well as the impact. We will be asking for support from the community to assist with this given it can be a lot of work!

/fin

Aaaaand that’s a wrap. Obviously none of this is finalised yet and so we would love any input from the community to see if we’ve got anything drastically wrong (we’re all human here). We aim to formalise this in a snapshot vote in the next week or so.

Edit 1

Based on community feedback both on the forums, in discord and other chats we’ve decided to update the total ask to 21M PERP (up 500K) and have the distributions as follows:

  1. Rewards: 13M Perp (same)
  2. Partnerships and Bounties: 4M Perp (combined strategic partnerships and bounties into one)
  3. DEX Liquidity: 4M (same)
8 Likes

Before embarking on any experiments, i think a precondition is to fix the deprecated authentication sig. Metamask gives a very scary message saying something like ‘do not sign unless you are willing to have your entire wallet drained.’

There is no point in trying to boost growth while still having the implementation that results in that warning message.

I love perp, but even I don’t use my main account to trade since I’m not willing to lose everything in my wallet.

2 Likes

I think this is a solid proposal that will help bootstrap the network as a whole.

I especially agree that we need additional PERP incentives for more DEX liquidity. I also support vesting among both strategic partners and a portion of rewards from bonus incentive programs like transaction mining. Vesting all users to some degree will help stabilize any increase in supply and force those users to stay somewhat invested/interested in the platform

1 Like

That’s a great proposal for Ecosyastem grwoth, unlock PERP token could be a huge incentive for users and holders. Also, with perpetual protocol shining in onchain deravatives, i believe lots of capitals and funds are searching for opportunity to participate in perpetual eco and contribution as strategic partners.
In addition, with token price pump up, current liquidity on DEXs must not enough, meanwhile traders face bigger slippage than before.
That’s great timing to unlock~

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In support of this proposal too! LFG!

Some comments:

  • On transaction mining rewards: I think 13M PERP is a tat bit too much. 10M should be enough (half of current circulating). The other 3M can be used for Strategic Partnerships budget. Also, I believe all 10M should be fully vested over a 1 year (block-by-block), similar to how DODO vesting works else the LPs/Stakers for PERP will lose out.
  • On strategic partnerships: 3M PERP (= ~$18M). I don’t think this is enough to get good partners on board. Been in this industry for a while, and almost all significant partnerships made requires at least $1mil investment. You need more cash reserves to rapidly expand beyond Taiwan. Key markets to go for should be HK/SG/US in my opinion.
  • On Bounties Program: 500k PERP (=~$2.5M) allocation looks good! It can last for the whole year for community integration projects. I will recommend using the strategic partnership funds to get an Asia Group (Wanxiang, Fenbushi, LongHash) to help with the distribution of these grants. As for the US, I think you can get a partner with Tachyon or DeFiAlliance (by Qiao Wang) can help with distribution too. Also, getting PERP listed on Gitcoin Bounties/Hackathon/Grants is pretty cheap, cost roughly $50k.
  • On DEX liquidity mining rewards: 4M PERP looks good! I think further mining rewards should be stake-only enabled for 1-year though, before being able to sell. Possible to do so via a vPERP token contract? I hope so.

Just my 2 cents! Looking forward to helping you guys succeed.

2 Likes

I like the trial and error approach to get the optimal strategy. I’m just confused as to why the proposed weekly cap will deplete the 13M PERP in just about 4 weeks? Vesting period must favor long-term supporters.

On DEX Liquidity, have you conducted impermanent loss impact analysis?

On distribution of PERP among the goals, you may consider moving tokens from one goal to another if it fits more the achievement of your overall objective.

1 Like

Oh sorry we’re asking for 13M in PERP (so at current prices it’s ~78M in USDC value) and then a maximum of 4M USDC per week. Ideally though we really don’t want to spend all of this. I would almost think of it like an exponential in terms of spend - start super small and then scale it up as the transaction volume and new users join

This is super interesting. Are you suggesting we do 10M in transaction mining and then move the 3 to strategics (i.e. 6M PERP strategic)?

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Support. Would like to know the specifics of the rewards program though. Even if it is going to potentially change due to experimentation, we would like to know the first implementation.

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First off, congrats on hitting the ONE BILLION milestone today! Great achievement!

This is a great proposal Nick, covering a lot of ground there. Looking forward to continuing discussions on all of this.

2 Likes

What are the proposed allocations if the $13m rewards pool between staking rewards and trading incentives?

I’d suggest the bulk go towards staking rewards and rewards should be escrowed (look at Synthetix as a model).

Staking bootstraps community engagement and governance while also locking up economic value. It creates a reflexive loop that supports token price appreciation as the network grows.

Hold and stake perp > earn tokens + fees > attract more hodlers and users > drive transactions volume > increase demand for perp tokens by new stakers looking to capture a portion of fees > cycle continues.

Escrowing at least the perp rewards for say a year will attract longer term participants and may dissuade folks who would just earn and dump.

Folks that stay along and get involved are more apt to be retained long term as they support the network to increase it’s economic value that they share in.

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Appreciate the team taking community input on this rather than making a decision on its own. I fully support most if not all of the initiatives laid out. I particularly like experimentation with rewards to find best fit.

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Yes, I think it will be more useful for the 3M PERP to be in the Strategic Budget. Getting someone like JUMP Trading as a partner might cost $3-4mil alone.

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I would like to see a strategic partnership with Yearn Finance.

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Why do we all assume a strategic partnership entails PERP paying up on their end? PERP has had insane growth on its own without much help, why aren’t others lining up at the gates to pay PERP for a partnership instead? Just a thought.

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Thanks for the suggestions.
Both certain % of the trading incentives and staking rewards would be vested over a longer time like Synthetix.
We will release the draft of the reward design soon but I’m afraid we will have way more rewards for trading incentives than staking.
The rationale behind this is because, if we can boost the trading vol by giving out trading incentives, the fees will be boosted too and half of that will go to the stakers. It boosts APY a lot and should be enough to attract stakers.
That being said, we will run some experiments and see how things work out.

2 Likes

Thanks for bringing this up. It’s actually a hard tech question we have when implementing the L1/L2 integration.

The error message shown above is because we can’t use EIP-712 to sign a JSON doc and send that to L2 for execution. Metamask doesn’t allow the DApp to sign any messages if it’s targeting a different network. We need to implement a customized signing method in order to get around this, but Metamask then shows us this warning message.
I hope we can find another way to work around this soon, but we don’t have many choices by using Metamask.

The quickest workaround we have is launch another website that ask users to connect to xDai Network directly. It solves some of the UX problems we have like hardward wallet, wallet connect, and this warning message, but make it harder to onboard users.

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Ok I get that rationale. Makes sense.

  • Bootstrap volume
  • Higher volume = Higher fees
  • 50% fees accrue to stakers + Smaller staking incentives
  • Demand for tokens to stake goes up to capture growing fees

:+1:

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that is a great proposal!

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Agree with the general outlines of these proposals, but I wanted to point out that for 3. Bounties program; you want to allocate a sizeable portion to UI. While the current UI is functional and clean enough, it is certainly lacking in aesthetics. The UI needs to look pleasing and professional and you likely want to integrate statistics onto the main site instead of relying on third party services. The look also needs to have Perp’s identity incorporated into it, now it just looks really generic and bland, a bit of a gamified feel to it is also preferable. A fantastic example of a great evolution over time is SushiSwap. I’m sure this has partly played into its current popularity, it’s just a joy to browse and makes people stick around and play with the site/want to understand how it works. My feeling is that you probably want to have some upgrade implemented before launching big trading incentivisation schemes.

The second point I wanted to raise is that we will need to continue having DEX Liquidity Mining Programs, that are close to on par with the rewards you get from staking (both have a risk factor to it, so not necessarily need to favour one over the other). I think it is essential for price discovery that Liquidity Mining Programs remain in place in this early stage of the project. The specifics I am unsure about, but it needs to be done. Simply injecting PERP into balancer will not be sufficient, you want to run something on Uniswap or SushiSwap where you just get a lot more visibility from the wider DEFI community.

My 2 cents, looking forward to seeing the fleshed out proposals next week.

3M PERP at current prices would be anywhere between $12-15M so should be ok?

500K is pretty beefy with current prices. Potentially we can increase the ask to 1M but that’s a lot of bounties to spend!

1 Like