On October 11, 2023, DWF Ventures disclosed its primary investment focus on derivative protocols, particularly perpetuals, through a comprehensive Hindsight article. The piece aims to dissect the landscape of decentralized exchanges (DEXs) concerning perpetuals, shedding light on prevalent innovations in this domain.
The journey of perpetuals commenced with Bitmex introducing them in 2016. Since then, the growth trajectory has been striking, with perpetuals now embodying a whopping 97% of the crypto market trading volume. The burgeoning interest in perpetual DEXs underscores the discernible disparity between centralized exchanges (CEX) and DEXs, and the boundless growth potential inherent in perpetual DEXs.
A stark contrast exists between CEX and DEX, especially in terms of central limit order books (CLOB) and trading processes. The blockchain constraints have posed a substantial challenge in mirroring or outstripping the user-centric experience provided by CEX on DEX platforms.
Efforts are being channeled to create a decentralized “CEX experience.” Protocols like dYdX are at the forefront of replicating the Limit Order Book (LOB) model, while HyperliquidX is pushing the envelope in the decentralization spectrum.
In the vein of embracing DeFi innovation, perpprotocol emerged as a trailblazer by introducing the vAMM model. This model serves as a viable alternative for traders yearning for decentralization coupled with instant on-chain liquidity.
DriftProtocol has ventured into a hybrid approach to tackle the inherent limitations of on-chain LOB and vAMMs. This novel methodology involves routing orders through three distinct sources to achieve effective on-chain matching, bridging the gap between traditional order books and automated market makers.
A notable divergence is witnessed in the rise of Liquidity Pool (LP) models in perpetual DEXs. Spearheaded by GMX, the peer-to-pool model departs from the conventional vAMM model, providing a fresh perspective on liquidity management.
Kwenta.io is playing a pivotal role in revolutionizing the LP model by leveraging the Synthetix Debt Pool. This innovative tactic minimizes slippage by pooling and transferring liquidity across various markets, fostering a conducive environment for trading synthetic assets and perpetual futures.
The perpetual DEX landscape is ripe for continued innovation. The unique structural differences between DEXs and CEXs have spurred a wave of DeFi innovations, manifesting in models like vAMMs and liquidity pools. DWF Ventures expressed an anticipatory stance towards how each protocol would navigate the challenges and further mold the future of perpetual DEXs.
DWF Ventures’ discourse underscores the blend of decentralization and innovation as a driving force for perpetual DEX advancements. The continuous exploration and adaptation of new models signify a promising horizon for the perpetual DEX landscape, with each protocol contributing to a more robust and user-centric decentralized trading ecosystem.
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