Do we want to become a Product DAO, partnership platform or both?

Hey everyone,

I don’t feel I’m in a position to comment on the MVI fee split arrangement, but i’ve been thinking a lot about this comment from @AcceleratedCapital and 1KX, and would really like to dig into this some more.

I value support from 1KX and have been a massive fan of @AcceleratedCapital . I wasn’t sure how to best open these questions, and I’m sure these conversations are probably happening in back-channels, but I figured the forum might be most appropriate for transparency, and I know others have similar questions/concerns.

My first question:

  1. What exactly do we mean by inflection point? Can we not hybrid a product DAO who ships quality internally sourced product and methodology leveraging our growing expertise, be a Distribution Platform where we partner with industry experts and source external methodology and also land products somewhere between where we share methodology and work with advisors?

I’m all for the pivot toward creating products with better profitability profiles, and I’m generally supportive of the recent changes to the new product development process. I’m really grateful we’re thinking more about creating products that are sustainable, derived from market research and capitalising on our growing internal expertise. I’m also incredibly confident in the brains behind many of our recent product launches - @DocHabanero, @allan.g, @afromac, @JosephKnecht + internal engineering @edwardk (and many others).

But I agree with the sentiment that working with external partners and handing over full methodology has some serious long term network-effect potential.

Second question:

  1. Do our recent product onboarding changes and arrangements move us further away from working with external methodologists or deter external partners? If so, can we work in some arrangement where we balance prioritising some external methodology partnerships and really looking after our existing partners, even if it means foregoing immediate maximum profitability?

I ask these questions from a community perspective. There’s massive potential working with external parties, tapping into other audiences and partnering with external methodologists who have different points of view, expertise and exposure. In my opinion, we haven’t explored this enough and I’m concerned we’re underestimating the Web3 composability/partnership opportunity.

Hope that all made sense.

Thanks in advance for any/all feedback.


Hi @bradwmorris

I’m glad you asked this question. The answer is both. We want to partner with the best methodologists, brands, protocols, and distribution channels in the ecosystem, and we want to have the best team to do so. We’re in the early days of building a strong product and engineering team but it will always be minuscule compared to the collective creativity, energy and brainpower of the broader ecosystem. I’m a big believer in building strengths on strengths and where we don’t have the competence or the resource in-house we should complement that through partnership. The protocols in defi who are composable, partner and open are the ones that win and Index Coop will be no exception.

We’ve started to make early progress with our emerging partnerships, for example, with Notional, L2BEAT, ForeFront, TokenTerminal and very recently Balancer and there are many more in the pipeline. From the forum discussions it’s clear that in some cases the past approach to partnering was counter-productive and fraught. We need to do the hard work of rebuilding those relationships and learn to do better, much better.

We’ve started to take operational steps by appointing relationship managers for our existing external methodologists and have Growth do the partner identification for our upcoming thematic indices. Last week, I submitted an agenda item request for the Council to create a Partnering Nest although I appreciate the Council already has a lot to take on this season. This is an area close to my heart and I want to make sure we get it right. Lastly, all of these goals are perfectly compatible with growing profit and TVL. In fact, they’re essential for doing so. Also, the more value we create the more rewards there’ll be to share with all of our new internet frens.


Appreciate this response.

I went back and reviewed the product launch pipeline after my post, and can see a number of the products on the roadmap are partner-centric, and either include an external methodologist or partner advisor.

Upvoted. I agree this should be a Season 1 priority.

Thanks @JosephKnecht !


Hi @bradwmorris, I am also glad you asked this question as it’s give us an opportunity to clarify our position on the product team - as @JosephKnecht has done above.

I also strongly believe we can do both. An Index Coop that exists as solely as a product designer will not scale effectively (like @AcceleratedCapital mentioned above), while an Index Coop that focuses solely on partnerships will not innovate.

The greatest opportunities will emerge when we find the correct balance between the two objectives. And care should be taken to ensure partnerships are not neglected in the race towards innovation. An ideal Index Coop is relentlessly focused on technological innovation and market disruption, while providing a white glove service as we onboard future strategic partnerships.

This is how we win.


Great call-out @bradwmorris -

I would love to get more of the existing/aspiring methodologist perspective:
@scott_lew_is @DarkForestCapital @verto0912 @Thomas_Hepner @Kiba @LemonadeAlpha @Matthew_Graham @Monportefeuille


Hi @bradwmorris, great question and I think it was best to highlight this future strategy. As you can tell, the product team full supports doing both.

This is the best use of our core competencies as an organization.

Index Coop understands how to curate and build structured products on-chain better than anyone else.

Likewise, Index Coop has been able to distribute our on-chain products better than any other provider of structured products. But, we’ve done so through the help of partners. Working with partners provides many benefits such as, sharing capital cost, innovation and creativity, new distribution channels, and much more.

To @JosephKnecht’s point, though most partners want to build products with us, there’s many Nest involved in the overall partnership. It makes the most sense for the relationship management to sit outside of Product, through an Alliance or Partnership Nest, and have Product be a keep input to the project.

I think the future at Index Coop includes two product paths:

  • Internal path where our mad scientist come up with products like icETH.
  • Product partnership path where we work with an external organization to develop a product. The idea could come from the external organization or from an internal resource (such as FIXED) but an external organization is required to develop and launch the product

Both is for me also the best answer. What we need is to go slow. More products do not necessarily mean progress. Whenever I hear about a new product as the recent forefront’s one, I am really excited but also scared. The focus MUST be on the people who will use the indices. Many options confuse the mind. We should probably suggest collaboration between methodologists. The menus of the best restaurants are just one page. Anyway just a concern of mine… love all :heart: I.C. Is just getting started…:pray:t4:


This is awesome, appreciate this response @afromac , 100% aligned.

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Thanks @DocHabanero ,

Excuse the nitpicking here. Just want to confirm there’s still space for an external partner to come to us with the idea, we develop/help develop and launch the product together? Or are we looking to completely separate/outsource development where external partners are involved?