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Looking Back and Forward — August 2020 edition

Building the first Credit Default Swap (CDS) in DeFi, a reliable derivative for DeFi darling $YFI, welcoming independent teams building on Protocol, and much more!

DeFi Summer seems to be in full swing as new projects, features, tokens, and memes seem to be popping up every single day. It has become almost impossible to keep up with all development happening in the sector and get your healthy dose of sleep every day. For Opium Team, August has definitely been an eventful month, with some success stories to share and new announcements to make. Let’s dive in!

Team updates

$OPIUM governance token announced

Opium Protocol will implement a decentralised governance model in the upcoming weeks, which will be driven by a governance token — $OPIUM. Holders of the Opium token will be able to vote on proposals that will drive growth and development of our ecosystem. The governance token will be essential in gradually decentralising Opium Protocol. For more details regarding the governance model and token economics, read our official whitepaper.

Opium Protocol whitepaper released

Opium Team was founded in 2017 and has been working on decentralised derivatives long before the birth of DeFi as we know it today. As we progress towards the next phase for Opium Protocol, we present our official whitepaper that elaborates on our thesis, the design philosophy and technical architecture of Opium Protocol, and a summary of the upcoming governance model. The whitepaper is available for download on the official Opium Github.

New partnerships and advisors

As previously mentioned in an article by Coindesk, Stani Kulechov (founder of Aave) has joined Opium as an advisor. Aave and Opium have previously collaborated on various occasions (eg. interest rate swaps, credit default swaps, assistance on technical and mathematical topics) and the results have always been very positive. Stani will be providing strategic assistance to our team and continue our collaboration with the Aave team.

Launch of the Opium Discord community

Since our Telegram community has doubled over the past couple of weeks, we are now launching a dedicated Discord server for Opium Protocol! Discord has some advantages over Telegram; most notably the addition of channels for more focussed discussions. Whether you are a derivatives trader, DeFi user or developer — join the conversation on the Opium Discord server!

Product updates

Derivatives for $YFI markets in collaboration with Chainlink

Opium Protocol was the first to launch a derivative for DeFi’s darling $YFI earlier this year. In collaboration with Chainlink, all $YFI derivatives built on Opium Protocol are now consuming a reliable price feed for the YFI/ETH token pair.

DeFi’s first CDS contracts in collaboration with Aave

Aave’s recent Credit Delegation feature was a big step for undercollateralized loans in DeFi. This inspired Opium Team to introduce a key financial instrument to DeFi — Credit Default Swaps. In collaboration with Aave, Opium launched the first decentralised CDS product to DeFi, which sparked a lot of media attention and discussion on Twitter and Telegram.

Launched the first CDS for a crypto stablecoin

After our first CDS launch in collaboration with Aave, we have received a lot of positive feedback which motivated us to brainstorm on other relevant applications of this financial instrument. The result is the very first Credit Default Swap (CDS) on crypto's most widely used stablecoin—USD Tether ($USDT). The CDS was featured in an article by Coindesk and we received a ton of positive feedback. We will continue to innovate on this product through experimenting with some of the parameters.

External teams building on Opium Protocol

Opium Protocol is open for anyone to use, which also includes teams that are seeking to build their own derivatives and bring them to market quickly. Last month we have supported Oliva Futures who seek to bring their olive oil futures to the Spanish market. Besides Oliva Futures, there are three other independent organizations that are building on top of Opium Protocol. Stay tuned for further details!

Technical improvements

In the background, Opium Team has been working on various improvements and optimisations to Opium Exchange and Swap.Rate. We have some feature updates planned for September, so stay tuned!

Media & Events

Feature article on our USDT CDS product by Coindesk

Coindesk was the first to write about our work on USDT Credit Default Swaps. The article adequately explains why derivatives like these are needed in DeFi and how it works. Check out the full article on Coindesk!

Crypto Tonight x Open Finance Conference

Opium was represented in a panel on decentralised derivatives, amongst other notable projects like UMA, dYdX and Opyn. The panel was organized by Crypto Tonight podcast host Yama Zhang and was part of a notable DeFi event in China; Open Finance Conference. Check out the panel below!

Chainlink’s Smart Contract Summit

Chainlink organised the first version of their Smart Contract Summit and it was a success, with our founder Andrey joining an insightful panel on the state of Automated Market Makers in DeFi. The recordings of the event are not yet published, but we will share it once available!

DeFi by Design podcast

Check out this insightful conversation on the future of derivatives trading, hosted by the DeFi Slate community. Andrey talks about how decentralised derivatives could help the Spanish olive oil market, teases an upcoming derivative that is related to Elon Musk and comments on how liquidity from traditional finance can be bridged to DeFi.

Global DeFi Summit

Our founder Andrey was invited to join a panel on the future of DeFi at the Global DeFi Summit. Due to technical issues, Andrey only had about three minutes of speaking time but the panel turned out to be very insightful!

Featured on CryptoCrow.net

Opium Protocol was featured in this extensive article on decentralised derivatives, written by the CryptoCrow team. Read the article on CryptoCrow.net

Guest post on DeFi.cx

We contributed an extensive article on the current state of the derivatives market in DeFi and the potential opportunities that lie ahead. Read the full piece on DeFi.cx

A comparison article on derivative protocols in DeFi

DeFi Slate published an extensive comparison article on derivative protocols available in DeFi today, including Opium Protocol. Read the full piece on DeFi Slate

What’s next?

September will bring new decentralised derivatives, new feature updates for Opium Exchange, more details regarding Opium DAO and the upcoming $OPIUM governance token, and much more! We are excited to bring Opium Protocol to the next phase and we are grateful to the community members that have been following and supporting us since 2017.

Stay informed by following our announcements channel on Telegram!

About Opium

Opium is a universal and robust DeFi protocol that allows for creating, settling, and trading decentralised derivatives. Use our products today to speculate on opportunities inside and outside of DeFi, or hedge yourself against trading risks.

Explore Opium Protocol or try out Opium Exchange.

Stay informed through following us on Twitter, joining our Telegram chat and announcements channel.

Join the discussion on our brand-new Discord server!



Opium Protocol is the universal protocol to create, settle and trade virtually all derivatives in a trustless way.

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Crypto native, in deep since '17. Passionate about coordination mechanisms and Decentralized Finance. Product Manager @ MakerDAO. wagmi culture.