The second annual Osmocon took place on July 21st in Paris, France, and was host to some of the brightest and most innovative minds in crypto to date. Since the first Osmocon took place, the role Osmosis has played within the Cosmos has evolved and grown from being the largest DEX in the ecosystem but now the liquidity hub and center of innovation and development for Cosmos DeFi.
Coming onto the stage with the fresh release of Supercharged Liquidity, the recently upgraded tokenomics, and a full slate of features thanks to the hard work of ecosystem builders. This year’s Osmocon was full of announcements, many of which have been in the works for the past year and anxiously awaiting this event to showcase their hard work.
Osmocon2023 started with an exciting presentation by Osmosis co-founder Sunny Aggarwal. As aptly stated, the title was a breakdown of Osmosis’s current state as the Interchain DEX and its position within the Cosmos Ecosystem while providing us with the roadmap and vision for what Osmosis aims to achieve.
This state of the union focused on the three innovations Osmosis has brought to the Cosmos since its inception. First, Stableswaps, launched in late December of 2022, to open the door for LSTs to become a fundamental component of the Cosmos DeFi. Cosmwasm Pools expanded users’ customizability to create new types of pools using CosmWasm. Lastly, implementing Supercharged Liquidity increased the efficiency Osmosis can deliver to users and provided users with a simplified Orderbook experience in DeFi.
Sunny Aggarwal showcasing Cosmoswap
Even more exciting than the features released to date is how fast the Osmosis ecosystem has grown over the past year. A variety of Defi applications now complement the Osmosis DEX. We now have lending and borrowing thanks to Mars Protocol, Vaults thanks to Quasar and Apollo, with more to come via Astroport. Levana, who recently deployed on Osmosis, just launched their perpetual exchange, which has seen significant traction in the community.
Additionally, Osmosis liquidity has allowed it to host various market strategies to automate swapping tokens, as it now hosts Calculated Finance, Yieldmos, and Autonomy.
To add to the excitement, the number of developer tools and public good projects Osmosis has been working on alongside ecosystem participants has steadily increased in the last year; notable mentions include Cosmos Kit, Telescope, Beaker, and the latest Celatone, which created a blockchain explorer for smart contracts on Osmosis.
The goal for Osmosis has always been to onboard as many users as possible and compete against centralized exchanges. To do so, Osmosis is planning on elevating the user experience even further. Increasing functionality for daily users while providing all the benefits using DEX brings.
Sunny revealed a slew of upgrades coming to the Osmosis front end. The focus of these upgrades will be in line with Osmosis’ mission. It will give users more control of their daily activities while gaining more insights into their positions without leaving the site.
Osmosis announced upgrading the front end to make it even more powerful. The upcoming upgrade includes a new “Earn” page, which will provide users with all the necessary tools for a native Staking Dashboard.
A demo of the Native Staking Dashboard
The Staking Dashboard will enhance the staking experience for all, not just for Osmosis users. Allowing Cosmos users to natively manage all staking activities within the Osmosis page, making this the first multi-chain staking experience within the Cosmos Ecosystem.
The Osmosis team has been working closely with Notifi, the leader in web3 notifications, to enable live notifications for the Osmosis DEX. This feature will be essential for current Osmosis features such as supercharged liquidity.
Osmosis native notifications powered by Notifi
Osmosis users can expect to be able to be alerted when concentrated liquidity positions fall out of range; new assets go live, governance proposals go live, and even changes in asset prices.
The implementation of live notifications is just the beginning. Eventually, Osmosis hopes to see this implementation go live for Osmosis-specific applications like Mars and Levana, which would greatly benefit from this feature in tracking liquidations, and price changes for leveraged positions.
To complement the incoming upgrades to the Staking Dashboard, Osmosis plans to introduce its own Pro Trading Interface. This feature will enhance the functionality that Osmosis offers traders, maximizing the power of Supercharged Liquidity.
Traders will be able to place limit orders, stop orders, and utilize leverage trade directly from the Osmosis interface.
A demo for the Osmosis Pro Trading Interface
Osmosis announced it would be integrating applications directly within Osmosis. Currently, Osmosis-enabled applications require additional approvals and connections, which creates friction for users. Allowing applications within the Osmosis front end will transform the Osmosis App page into a hub for seamlessly using any Osmosis-enabled dApp.
They additionally revealed their intent to utilize Smart Accounts. This feature would allow users to utilize web2 identification methods to use the Osmosis DEX, removing yet another hurdle to onboarding new crypto users.
Deeper application integration, compounded with the added functionality of Smart Accounts, will bring users a more smooth operating and onboarding experience in a decentralized application. We encourage you to watch Sunny’s talk on Osmocon 2023 if you wish to hear more about what is coming to Osmosis over the next quarters.
Osmosis Grants Program (OGP): OGP, since its launch over a year ago, has played an essential role in stimulating the growth of the Osmosis ecosystem. With $3.9 million allocated in grants, various tooling, dApps, and infrastructure projects have been nurtured. This investment has propelled developments in Infra, IBC expansion, and accelerating the ecosystem’s roadmap.
Federico Daffina representing the Osmosis Grants Program
Reverie has led these initiatives by streamlining communication, ensuring accountability, setting milestones, and handling fund allocations. Their leadership in critical areas like Skip, Mesh Security, Incentives Optimization, Fee Abstraction, and apps like Cosmoswap and DAO DAO illustrates their central role in shaping Osmosis’s future. Their continuous collaboration with Cosmos teams, Notifi, Skip, and Notional has been vital in this development journey.
BitGo, a digital asset financial services pioneer, is eagerly diving into a strategic collaboration with Cosmos. Luke, who heads ecosystem development at Bitgo, provided insights into qualified custody and its relevance to traditional financial systems were eye-opening. He emphasized the importance of trust and regulation in handling large volumes of liquidity within crypto. One of the exciting developments is the native integration of WBTC through Osmosis. Having established WBTC on Ethereum, we’re thrilled to see it becoming a part of the Cosmos ecosystem.
The goal at BitGo is not just to solve problems for the average user but to facilitate traditional finance in accessing abundant liquidity in innovative ecosystems. Adding WBTC through Osmosis will allow institutional liquidity to move into the Cosmos smoothly, demonstrating the immense potential of this partnership.
Despite the complexities of building regulated products, BitGo thrives in navigating these challenges. Partnering with Osmosis will allow Bitgo to expedite integrating chains significantly. What would typically take six months with an L1 chain takes only six weeks with Cosmos’s advanced capabilities.
The ongoing collaborative efforts with the Cosmos ecosystem, emphasized by incorporating WBTC through Osmosis, highlight their commitment to exploring and embracing the most promising advancements in digital assets.
Zaki Manian shed light on how Sommelier Finance has pioneered intelligent adaptive DeFi vaults, highlighting the interplay between Ethereum and Cosmos.
Sommelier Finance, a hybrid Ethereum/Cosmos project co-founded two years ago, has been at the forefront of the increasingly popular narrative around intelligent adaptive DeFi vaults. These vaults, powered by off-chain computation, cater to the Ethereum DeFi ecosystem, and the learnings from Ethereum have deployed to mature the Cosmos DeFi sphere.
Zaki Manian highlighting Sommelier Finance
With yield products focused on Ethereum, Bitcoin, and Stablecoin and relying chiefly on concentrated liquidity on Uniswap, Sommelier aims to enhance liquidity mechanisms in the Cosmos. While order book and concentrated liquidity are essential, efforts have started to enable large-cap crypto to trade sizeably and compete with centralized exchanges.
The implementation of concentrated liquidity has significantly augmented LST and Stablecoin arbitrage opportunities, expanded profitable locations and times for liquidity providers (LP), and intensified competition among the top players in liquidity provision. The nature of concentrated liquidity has shifted the dynamics, benefiting the most advanced players with optimal positions and hedging mechanisms.
Moreover, the advent of smart contract pools live on Osmosis, something still in the fundraising or building stage for many has positioned Osmosis at the forefront of this usage. This innovation could lead to pools tailored to a liquidity provider’s strategy or run applications themselves. As a novel source of yield, concentrated liquidity promises to massively expand Cosmos, transforming the LPing experience in a way that creates anticipation for future developments.
Introducing concentrated liquidity opens doors for more considerable trading volumes, creating competitive conditions for centralized exchanges. This innovation changes the liquidity provision landscape, allowing advanced players with robust hedging strategies to maximize profits.
Valentin Pletnev provided an overview of Quasar’s achievements, growth strategies, and plans for empowering Osmosis.
Quasar’s Impact: With over $800k of Osmosis liquidity managed, Quasar’s commitment to UX and yield optimization sets the stage for significant future growth. Their outpost model for strategies and collaboration with independent strategist teams illustrates their innovative approach to DeFi.
Since its inception in 2021, Quasar has grown to a team of 14, raising $11.5M for IBC-enabled yield aggregation and co-developing the async-ICQ module. With the launch of the Quasar app chain, it became the first to initiate IBC-enabled CosmWasm contracts using ICA/ICQ, attracting 1500+ vault users. Additionally, Quasar’s cryptocurrency, QSR, recently debuted on StreamSwap. Osmosis manages 0.7% of its liquidity through Quasar as the central hub for yield generation, amounting to over $800k. Quasar’s growth is driven by a focus on user experience, simplifying participation in decentralized finance (DeFi) by abstracting technology complexities.
Another growth driver is yield; Quasar’s infrastructure enables typical users to compete with professional market makers in a non-custodial and permissionless manner.
The notable collaboration with Osmosis Grants, one of the only interchain grants collaborations in Cosmos, is funding independent strategy teams for vault creation. Quasar’s transition to an Outpost model for strategies, where separate teams drive strategies, is backed by Osmosis as the backbone of liquidity.
This collaboration is a critical enabler in this space, aligning with Quasar’s goals for deeper specialization. Within the broader context, 30% of all global and 3% of crypto assets are now under management, reflecting Quasar’s influence in the financial ecosystem.
Since the launch of Cosmos in 2019, the introduction of Osmosis has marked a significant development, with the platform leading in IBC volume. Wormhole has contributed similarly, specializing in secured “messaging” overseen by 19 guardians and facilitating cross-chain development through Wormhole Connect.
The unveiling of Wormhole Gateway marks a new era in cross-chain communication within Cosmos, focusing on fungible assets across IBC without extra bridging fees.
Recognizing the necessity for core security features and a platform to enable effortless connections to new assets without additional bridging fees, Wormhole unveiled Gateway. Powered by the Cosmos SDK, this app-specific blockchain will focus on fungible assets across IBC, effectively driving liquidity into Cosmos without incurring extra bridging costs. The ease of bridging assets to Cosmos, enabled by Packet Forward Middleware and IBC Hooks, was demonstrated, exemplifying the strategic advances made to simplify cross-chain interactions and broaden the ecosystem’s reach.
Mintscan 2.0 has firmly established itself as the de-facto block explorer for the Cosmos ecosystem, significantly streamlining the examination of vast data swaths through its implementation. Designed as an Interchain Portal, Mintscan 2.0 offers native and non-native crypto users a comprehensive view of Cosmos.
Created by Cosmostation, this upgrade is anchored on an ambitious plan comprising four key pillars: Information, utilizing various graphics to help visualize data; Insights, facilitating a deeper understanding of the data presented; Illumination, targeting the onboarding of new users to Cosmos; and Involvement, aimed at enhancing interaction between users and data.
With the launch of Mintscan 2.0, users now have an accessible and more visually engaging way to interact with data across diverse verticals.
dYdX, The leading decentralized perpetual exchange, gave a thrilling presentation on what we can expect as they near their upcoming launch. dYdX announced its goal to launch a fully decentralized app chain by September 2023 via the Cosmos SDK. They hope to achieve a permissionless asset launch system, eventually allowing them to become the largest exchange in the world and enabling selling trades and placing orders without the need for consensus.
dYdX’s announcement of a decentralized app chain shows an ambitious plan to revolutionize exchanges. Their goal of a permissionless asset launch system and simplifying trade processes puts them at the forefront of decentralized exchange innovation.
Osmocon 2023 presented a multi-dimensional view of the current state and future of the Cosmos ecosystem. The active collaboration between various stakeholders, innovative products, and forward-thinking strategies reflect an ecosystem poised for growth and transformation. From fostering development through grants to bridging traditional finance and blockchain, the event offered an inspiring glimpse into a future full of potential and innovation.
Of course, many more speakers, innovators, and builders gave excellent talks during Osmocon, be sure to check out the Osmosis YouTube channel for all the lectures and discussions during this historic event.
Osmosis is the premier cross-chain DeFi hub. As the liquidity center and primary trading venue of Cosmos – the 50+ sovereign Layer 1s connected with the Inter-Blockchain Communication protocol (IBC) – it is the gateway to the interchain.
And with the impending arrival of dYdX to Cosmos, and the forging of IBC connections to Avalanche, Polkadot, NEAR, and even Ethereum, access to appchains is only growing in importance.
With its suite of DAO-gated dApps – including the just-launched Mars lending and credit protocol, as well as upcoming features like Levana perps, Quasar strategy vaults, and the Ion Cosmos Index – the Osmosis Ecosystem provides UX-optimized DeFi for the cross-chain future.