Hello dYdX community ,
We are Delighted to apply to become a validator and contribute to the dYdX ecosystem. Please find below a summary of our company.
The Stake Capital Team
Entity Name and Location
Stake Capital Group is a blockchain-focused investment firm founded by Julien Bouteloup, Blockchain & Defi pioneer and visionary. We are a Europe-based entity with team members spanning across the globe. Stake Capital is an active early-stage VC, runs an incubation and acceleration program, as well as quantitative strategies (validation, liquid staking, market making, liquidation).
Our infrastructure is strategically distributed worldwide, in the USA (Virginia and Ohio) and Germany (Frankfurt) and can also accommodate multiple other regions if required to maintain optimal performance and reliability. A 99.99% uptime and sub-1% slashing rate demonstrate Stake Capital’s ability to deliver high performance validation.
What kind of hardware do you run? Baremetal, cloud-based…? In what geographic regions?
Our cloud-based servers run exclusively on Amazon Web Services. These servers are dynamically allocated with multiple hardware configurations in order to satisfy the specifics of each blockchain. Our diverse and distributed infrastructure managed with “infrastructure as code” via terraform allows us to mitigate risks and efficiently manage the multi-account / multi-region workloads.
Technical makeup of the team (number of dev ops engineers, experience, etc.)
Our team consists of
- Two DevOps engineers with ten years of experience split between web2 and blockchain. Their blockchain experience has primarily been on maintaining and operating validators, as well as building out liquid staking infrastructure.
- One quant researcher with ten years of experience split between tradfi and crypto
- One smart contract engineer with 5 years of direct experience
The team is split between EU and USA. The team is supported by a Business Developer, and a CEO + CIO both with quite technical backgrounds (cybersec/distributed systems/OG blockchain and defi; quant finance/algorithmics).
Years of Experience
Stake Capital, run by blockchain and DEFI pioneers since 2011, focuses on investing in, supporting, and building the next-generation blockchain projects. We started mining in 2011, investing in 2013, and building in 2015, enabling us to provide high-quality and trustworthy services to our clients and partners.
What other networks are you running validators for?
We are currently running validators for Ethereum 2.0, MultiversX, Celo, Avalanche, Livepeer, Ronin, Polygon, Gnosis, Threshold and Debridge. We anticipate adding the following validators in the coming months: Near, Cosmos, Eigen Layer, Polkadot.
We are also involved in testnets with Lukso, Celestia and anticipate doing the same with zkSync and the upcoming Starkware.
Based on your participation in any previous testnets, mainnets, are there any best practices to be aware of?
Regular updating of node/validator software is key to ensure network compatibility and defense against new threats. Implementing robust monitoring and alerting systems aids in early detection of issues and ensures smooth operation. Active participation in network governance and consensus protocols is essential for proper operation. Using testnets to understand the specific needs of the blockchain and to test our setups. Being engaged with the blockchain community via telegram and discord has also provided invaluable insights, updates, and support. Lastly, having a comprehensive multi-region disaster recovery strategy, including regular backups (snapshots) and a quick restoration plan, is critical to ensure resilience.
Do you have a validator voting framework and process?
Voting is currently handled by the Quant team + Management. We are in the process of adding a governance coordinator who actively oversees the voting process. Their key tasks include monitoring proposals across the protocols Stake is active in, preparing synthetic reports on upcoming votes, coordinating our activity in protocol governance, tracking advances in DAO governance.
Are you planning to play any additional roles in the dYdX ecosystem (e.g. market maker, trader, indexer, front-end, other)?
In addition to acting as a validator, Stake Capital plans on getting involved at the market making and liquidation level through its quant team, and through early-stage ecosystem investments through its VC team.
Are there other products or services you want to highlight that could be relevant for dYdX?
Stake Capital is active across early-stage VC, incubation, acceleration and quantitative strategies. The latter encompass validation, liquid staking, market making, and liquidation.
Any notable contributions in other ecosystems that you would like to highlight for the community?
Here are some key highlights including notable contributions from our founder.
- Core Team at Curve - the largest Automated Market Maker platform for stablecoins.
- Founder of Stake DAO - a leading decentralized exchange.
- Founder of BlackPool - an innovative NFT-focused investment fund.
- Founder of Rekt.news - the foremost media outlet specialized in DeFi.
- 162 early-stage venture investments including 17 Unicorn that we have been supporting since their pre-seed or seed.
- Invented flash loans
For more details about our portfolio and investment mandates, please visit our website. These experiences position us to make significant contributions to the dYdX ecosystem.