Analysis of the Delegations to the Top 100 Cosmos Hub Validators

There has been recently a lot of discussions and concerns after the delegation of atoms from All in Bits Inc (Tendermint private company). In order to increase transparency I have analyzed the delegations to each of the top 100 Cosmos hub validators (all delegations, not just from AiB) and I have then organized the validators in the following categories:

Almost all delegation (whale or small) from just one/two addresses or from exchange

These are basically a single whale delegation or funds/small atom holders that instead of delegating to other validators have launched their own validator. Some validators in this list may not be large atom holders and instead delegation is from several whales delegating only to them, in this case please contact me to update.

Top funds: Polychain labs/Polychain genesis, Ion

Exchanges/mining pool: Bitfish, Infostones, Huobi pool/wallet, Coinone

Tendermint employees: Jack Zampolin, umbrella, nylira

Small whales (if not whale and delegation from others please contact me to update): Sanka, Blockpool, Dominator, Velocity, Meet.one, Angel, Atom sadler, ateam, boubounode, simply VC, P2P, Staking fund, Skystar capital, Hyperblocks pro, Bity, Ping, Blockpower, F4rm, lunamint, any labs, hashtower, stake.zone, stakewithus, SSSnodes, neptune stake, vali the thor, chainlayer, cephalopod, cobo, gf.network, westaking, spacecontinium, dapppub, certify network, kysenpool, HLT, cosmoon, hoo.com, multichain venture

Ion/Dokia has been redelegating, supporting other smaller validators and helping with decentralisation. They are setting the example for other atom whales/funds in this category.

Almost all delegation from the Interchain Foundation and/or All in Bits Inc private corporation

The validators in this group are trusted and supported by the ICF and/or AiB. However their risk is very high because ICF/AiB can redelegate at any time so many of the validators in this category would be out of the top 100 if suddenly ICF/AiB redelegate from them or would go down to the lowest 20 validators or so.

Validators with >50% delegation from ICF: Cypher core, kytzu, noma, omega3, Syncnode, firstblock, konosuba.fandom and 2nd only to certus one (a 100% commission earning around $15k/month, the community voted close to 80% yes asking the ICF to redelegate from them, this validator has basically a single delegation just from ICF)

Validators with >50% delegation from AiB: Castlenode, umbrella, nylira, mythos, Kalpatech, SNZ holdings, bison trails, Sentinel, Stake capital, chainflow, wetez, blockmatrix, blockscale (received delegation while jailed and still jailed! 100% delegation from AiB), Genesis labs, compass, kochacolaj, firmamint, meleatrust

Validators in this category that would still be in the top 100 without ICF/AiB delegation: Cypher core, Syncnode, Castlenode, Umbrella, nylira, Kalpatech, Sentinel, SNZ holdings, Stake capital, chainflow, wetez, genesis lab, kochacolaj, meleatrust

This subgroup with AiB/ICF delegation that would still be in the top 100 without their support means that they are trusted both by AiB/ICF and other delegators so they could be added actually to the last category of “good distributed delegation and sustainable commission”. The only issue is that they still have a large over 50% amount of delegation from AiB and/or ICF so they should try to attract other delegators.

Good distributed delegation but with 0% commission

The validators in this group have good distribution of delegations but likely because of the 0% commission so this model may not be sustainable and their delegators may switch to other validators after they increase the commission. Some validators in this group are receiving donations, planning to do a DAO or other ideas to sustain the 0% commission. Some exchanges may also arrive with 0% commission but so far it hasn’t been the case.

Also, some validators may choose to pay the operational costs and keep commission at 0% to have and maintain a high voting power.

List of validators in this category: Sikka, Sparkpool, Forbole, Any labs, Huobi wallet, Newroad capital, IOSG, DappPub, westaking, Sanka, hashquark

Good distributed delegation and sustainable commission

These validators have attracted a wide pool of delegators with a reasonable commission. The main criteria for creating these 4 categories was the number of different delegators supporting a validator and the commission. So the validators with a reasonable commission that have attracted many different delegators show that they are trusted.

List of validators in this category: Certus one, Cosmostation, Chorus one, iqlusion, validator.network, b-harvest, staked, Cryptium labs, Staking facilities, ztake, Cosmos suisse, Irisnet, Delega networks, 01node, Dragon stake, POSbakerz, Stir, atom.bi23, Figment, easy 2 stake

Conclusion

For those validators in the first 3 categories just having one whale delegation, their own atoms, not able to be in the top 100 without ICF/AiB delegation or many delegations because of 0% commission, it is hard to estimate how many delegations they would get without 0% commission, without ICF/AiB delegation or other single whale, or without owning many atoms.

The validators in the last category (and the subgroup in the ICF/AiB category that would be still in the top 100 without ICF/AiB delegation) seem to be the ones that are actually trusted by many delegators who are willing to pay a commission above 0% for their services (around 50 validators in total).

1/3 of voting power is controlled by 6 validators (~37% actually): 3 from category 1 (Polychain 7.68%, bitfish 6.83%, Ion 5.88%), 2 from 0% commission category (Sikka 5.83%, Sparkpool 5.14%) and only one from last category (Certus One 5.61%). So, atom whales/funds and a tendermint employee with 0% commission have most of the 1/3 voting power (26.22%).

The remaining 29.7% to reach 2/3 of voting power is controlled by 10 validators:

Category 1: Jack zampolin 2.75% (tendermint employee)

Category 2: -

Category 3: Forbole 2.66%

Category 4: Cosmostation 4.43%, Chorus one 4.08%, iqlusion 3.58% (tendermint employee), figment 3.26%, validator.network 2.46%, Coinonenode 2.37%, b-harvest 2.23%, staked 1.83%

Tendermint employees control 18.23% of the 2/3 voting power.

Funds/whales control 23.3% of the 2/3 voting power.

If you think that there are some errors or that I missed some information please comment below or contact me via telegram and I will update the article, thanks.

Hector + OTC Room Validator

Written by

PwC Blockchain Lab, HEC Paris & Imperial College. TG: https://t.me/hotcrvalidator | Web: https://hotcrv.com/ | Twitter: https://twitter.com/HOTCRValidator