Laminar Introduces Flow Protocols: Bridging On- and Off-Chain Asset Trading

Ruitao Su
Published in
5 min readSep 22, 2019


Decentralized Finance (DeFi) has become one of the most active areas in the blockchain world, and is quickly capturing the financial sector’s attention. On Ethereum alone, from stablecoins to decentralized exchanges to lending and insurance platforms, there are currently over $500 million of funds locked in smart contracts.

This sum is only a drop in the ocean compared to mature financial markets. For instance, on average, more than $5 trillion are traded daily in forex markets, even though in mature markets, traders face challenges such as opaque pricing and market manipulation. The current DeFi applications provide financial services with open pricing, yet they are restricted to crypto users and capped with limited on-chain liquidity. There also exist technical limitations restraining growth of these tools, such as scaling and workload issues. Next-gen networks, like Polkadot, are emerging to solve these problems.

Laminar Flow Protocols

Laminar is a decentralized finance protocol company that creates an open, transparent, and trustless trading platform along with financial assets to serve traders from both the crypto and mainstream finance worlds. Laminar’s goal is to introduce new, competitive business models to mainstream financial service providers. These new protocols are also empowering developers to build more open finance services to strengthen the DeFi ecosystem. In contrast to the existing approaches, Flow Protocols — Laminar’s flagship product — offers the following features:

  • Instant Liquidity: Traders trade against smart contracts, instead of order books, so that there is always instant and infinite liquidity, provided that the collateral ratio does not fall below the preset liquidation threshold. For example, users can instantly open 1:1 EURUSD position, as well as long and short leveraged positions.
  • Asset Efficiency: While all positions are over-collateralized, traders only need to put up collateral for the value of the positions. Liquidity providers shoulder the rest of the risks. In return, liquidity providers earn transaction fees, e.g. in the form of a bid and ask spread in a Forex case. Savvy liquidity providers would have initiatives to hedge their risks on- or off-chain, depending on the asset type and their risk management strategies. Margin traders will also be able to trade against the liquidity pools, that traders’ risks and liabilities are capped by the margin locked, while their potential profits are also locked in the protocol.
  • Better Trading Experience: Flow Protocols enable transparent pricing and counter-party actions governed by the protocol and the community while providing an excellent trading experience comparable to the off-chain services. When collateralized positions are at risk, they will be open to the public for liquidation with rewards, which ensure the soundness of the liquidity pools.
  • Integrated Money Market: Assets deposited into the protocols by both the traders and liquidity providers generate interests that further increase the on-chain liquidity.
  • Tokenized Positions: Users can deposit USD stablecoins in exchange for synthetic stable fiat assets in the form of fTokens (Flow Tokens) e.g. fEUR.

The fTokens serve the following purposes:

  • form the basis for the margin trading protocol
  • serve as a general-purpose stablecoin/currency for payments
  • offer a store of value that holders can deposit into the money market to earn interest
High-level overview of Flow Synthetic Asset Protocol
High-level overiview of Flow Margin Trading Protocol

Traders can also tokenize margin positions connected to their short or long leveraged positions. These tokenized positions enable fluidity across asset classes, e.g. through easily tradable fTokens and margin tokens in open markets, or as building blocks of other financial services. We can’t wait for programmers and the community to explore further use cases!

Laminar aims to bridge on- and off-chain parties, and our goal is to bring meaningful financial transactions on-chain via better liquidity, more exposure, and more trading variety,” said Ruitao Su, Co-Founder & CEO of Laminar.


The Flow Protocols aim to be blockchain agnostic, comprising the Flow Synthetic Asset Protocol, the Flow Margin Trading Protocol, and the Flow Money Market Protocol.

Phase 0: Proof of Concept on Ethereum | End 2019

The Flow Protocols have been R&Ded on Ethereum, where the network is highly secure with valuable assets as the basis for trading. There are also active DeFi community and existing DeFi building blocks such as stablecoins that the Flow Protocols will build upon. The Flow Protocols and dApps will undergo thorough security audits and launch on the Ethereum mainnet in late 2019.

Phase 1: Flowchain as Specialised Trading Blockchain | Q1 2020

Our target protocol participants — mainstream traders and liquidity providers — require a low cost but high speed blockchain for trading. For instance, the blockchain needs to be capable of handling large trading volume and frequent price fluctuations.

Hence, we are developing the Flowchain based on Substrate, a next-gen upgradeable, customizable, high-performance blockchain framework to serve the needs of the intended use cases. The Flowchain is also an ecosystem partner in the Polkadot community where it will contribute to and leverage this interoperable and scalable network of blockchains ecosystem.

Laminar believes in directly addressing the pain points of all parties in the blockchain space and the financial markets with an open-source community approach. Flow Protocols will bring meaningful financial transactions on-chain, creating a critical building block in the DeFi space.

Laminar Core Team

Ruitao Su
Serial entrepreneur, investor and advisor of start up and expansion stage technology companies, award-winning software engineer.

Bryan Chen
Blockchain architect, Polkadot and Substrate contributor and community Ambassador, Substrate online course lecturer.

Antonia Chen
Chief Economist
PhD in Economics, experienced in tech startups, Microeconomics and Mathematics research, and token economy design.

Ermal Kaleci
Senior Software Engineer
Award-winning mobile developer, previously KYC and mobile wallet App developer.

Build DeFi with us

We are building Laminar Flow Protocols for the DeFi community and ecosystem, and we’d love for you to be part of our research and development. If you have ideas or questions, please join the Laminar community and get in touch:

Official Website:
Wechat Official Account: laminar_protocol

About Laminar

Laminar is a VC backed decentralized finance protocol company. It aims to create an open finance platform that will provide better access to trading instruments, and enable developers to build more open financial services. Laminar’s Flow Protocols bring both synthetic assets and margin trading on the blockchain. It helps to solve the challenges of opaque pricing and price manipulation in the current financial markets, bridges on- and off-chain parties, and ultimately boosts on-chain trading liquidity, exposure, and variety.

About Polkadot

By enabling a completely decentralized web, Polkadot envisions a Web where users’ identity and data is their own. Polkadot’s relay chain allows independent blockchains ‒ including private and consortium chains, public and permissionless networks, oracles, and future technologies that are yet to be created ‒ to exchange information and execute transactions in a trustless way. By empowering innovators to build better solutions, Polkadot seeks to free society from its reliance on a broken web where its large institutions can’t violate our trust.