We are proposing the creation and Q3 funding of an Institutional Business Working Group (IBWG) starting on July 1st, 2021 to September 30th, 2021. The Institutional Business effort kicked off in March 2021 to explore a strategy around servicing institutional buyers of Index Cooperative products. This framework went through two iterations (first, second) and informed the Institutional Business vertical within the Business Development Working Group. We’ve always intended to develop an autonomous IBWG, but coordinated with @BigSky7 to branch certain activities off of the Growth Working Group for Q2 2021. After discussion, we’ve agreed it’s time to continue streamlining activity within the Coop to bring specialized contributors closer to impactful work.
High-net-worth individuals and institutional buyers of on-chain crypto products insist on a higher level of education, service, and security than retail buyers. The IBWG exists to be the primary resource for ensuring Coop products meet those needs.
The key takeaway from our initial conversations with funds and large institutions is that while institutional investors are highly interested in the theme of decentralized finance, they will only purchase if they have high confidence in security and execution. Our principal goal has therefore been to ensure the necessary infrastructure is in place to provide that confidence. We have been successful on that front and are starting to shift to a balance between infrastructure and awareness.
Our Q3 strategy will be to cement more custodial listings, to pass the market maker proposal with the rest of the community, and to lead multiple awareness campaigns for institutional and HNW buyers.
- Listed DPI on BitGo, the first custodian to list DPI. The listing gives BitGo’s global institutional investor base a means to securely hold DPI.
- We are in the pipeline with several major global custodians with whom we’ve developed relationships during Q2 to similarly list DPI. The more custodians that list DPI, the more institutional buyers that can purchase DPI (and therefore the more AUM, units, and holders of the product).
OTC Desks / Exchange Listings
- We have reached a tentative arrangement (forum post forthcoming) with one of the largest global market makers to expand their activities with IC products. The better the execution an investor can expect, the more open they will be to purchasing DPI. This relationship also opens the door to more exchange listings, as CEXs look favorably upon token applications that are accompanied by existing market maker relationships.
- In discussions with another desk with the goal of having at least two desks actively trading and ideally making markets in IC products.
- Led the Miami BTC conference strategy to connect with several new key entities, as well as to deepen relationships with existing contacts.
- Designed the DeFi Summer NYC event to attract both TradFi and DeFi communities. Secured the venue and the panelists from top DeFi protocols (dydx, Aave, PoolTogether) and The Block.
- Partnered with CDWG to launch an Institutions landing page on the Index Coop website.
- Developed Investor FAQs to standardize our responses to common investor questions.
- Oversaw the standardization and updating of all IC product one-pagers through month-end June 2021.
- Secured a speaking opportunity for Felix to speak at Consensus 2021.
The Index Coop receives inbound interest for institutional purchases, and each custodian we speak to tells us that investors want indexed exposure to DeFi. We feel that DPI can be the tip of the spear for many institutional investors who want exposure to the space. Establishing a trusted relationship with those institutions will pay dividends for our entire product suite down the line.
- Relationships with DeFi Market Makers
- Institutional Investor Service Provider Listings (Custodians, Prime Brokerage)
- Institution-targeted educational content (materials, webinars)
- Centralized Exchange Listings
- Increase in unincentivized supply growth & unincentivized AUM
- Increase in total holders
- More exchange and custodian listings
- Expanded secure purchasing options and market depth for institutional buyers
- Position the Coop as a thought leader in the digital asset management space
- Nate Howard (Discord: fallow8)
- Michael Taormina (Discord:metfanmike)
We are requesting a budget of $60,000 and 2,550 INDEX over the next three months.
Working Group Leader Compensation: Total 2,550 INDEX (425 INDEX Per Leader Per Month)
Additional contributor rewards - $12,000 per month (Content production, bounties, regional coverage, and other efforts)
Licenses, industry associations, etc. - $4,000
Events and Conferences - $20,000
- We’re anticipating hosting another event in the style of the NYC Summer DeFi Event (~$10,000 in expenses)
- Requesting an additional $10,000 to attend conferences, expense meetings with investors/partners, and host side events at industry events where institutional investors and service providers congregate
Exchange Listings - Requests will be made outside of the working group funding. As was experienced with GWG and the Exchange Listings Wallet, the costs for individual listings are highly variable and unique to the listing. We will keep the community close on requests that fall under Exchange Listings but think making a guess for a given 3-month period is a waste of everyone’s time.
The IBWG will be led by two community members with an established track record of long-term high-leverage contribution to the Coop. The two co-leads will be directly accountable to the broader Coop community for the execution of the stated objectives.
IBWG leaders will assign stipends for regular contributors and award discretionary payments to incentivize activities that directly enable the WG to accomplish its strategic priorities.
The IBWG will host weekly meetings that are open to the entire community and we encourage attendance and participation.
I am committed to Index Coop principles 1
I am committed to serving the entire Index Coop with my work.
I am committed to open, rapid communication: I know that clear, constant, public communication lifts up the entire Index Coop community. I am committed to this style of communication.
Shared learnings: I will share my progress, learnings with the entire community. I will ensure that anything I create is accessible beyond my own tenure for future generations of Indexers to access & build on.
Intellectual honesty: I am committed to growth and improvement. I am open to feedback and will use feedback to improve my work for the benefit of the entire Coop community.
I am committed to making Index Coop a welcoming, fun, and engaging community to work in!