Opium Protocol has closed a $3.25 million funding round joined by several top investors of the industry

Andrey Belyakov
Published in
4 min readNov 2, 2020


Prominent investors and Opium supporters include QCP Soteria, HashKey, Galaxy Digital, Rockaway Blockchain Fund, Meta Cartel Ventures, Alameda Research, Launch Hub, CMS Holdings, Kenetic, One Block, SevenX, Zee Prime Capital, Digital Strategies, and — besides others — some founders including Stani Kulechov (AAVE), Jordan Momtazi (Synthetix) and Trevor Koverko (Polymath).

In addition to closing the investment round, Opium Team is happy to welcome Stani Kulechov (Aave) as an advisor to the team.

About Opium

The Amsterdam-based startup was founded by its CEO, Andrey Belyakov—a member of the CFA Institute, an experienced derivatives trader and mathematician in the past. Besides senior developers and financial markets experts, the team includes some famous names from the mathematical community, such as winners of the International Mathematical Olympiad (IMO).

“Derivatives are an extremely large and important part of the traditional financial system. They allow not only efficient trading of risks but also more capital efficiency. These features are key to a mature financial system and they will be highly utilized by DeFi as well.”

- Andrey Belyakov, founder of Opium Protocol

Opium Protocol allows for easily building decentralized analogues of traditional financial derivatives in a professional trustless ecosystem, targeting a potentially enormous market. The protocol was designed even before DeFi became mainstream, so it is aimed to be composable with DeFi and a traditional financial system at the same time.

Opium Protocol enables anyone to launch custom financial contracts at minimal effort and cost. It can be used to create contracts for any exotic asset, such as olive oil. This was previously impossible because of the prohibitively high costs associated with the traditional finance sector.

“A few years of R&D gave us invaluable experience and allowed us to be agile and quick in the delivery of fully decentralized financial instruments. Anyone can build composable DeFi instruments using Opium Protocol.”

- Ali Nuraldin, CTO & co-founder of Opium Protocol

Recent work by Opium

Throughout the year, the team has introduced several unique products to DeFi, such as pre-market futures for $COMP, weekly gas-price options, and several Credit Default Swaps (CDS) contracts for AAVE credit delegation, USDT and wBTC.

CDSs allow for frictionless transfer of risk; CDS buyers purchase protection against insolvency events, whilst CDS sellers increase returns on capital in exchange for accepting uncorrelated risk.

At the moment, the team is working on another breakthrough CDSs concept. Opium Protocol CDSs will compete with other solutions on the insurance market and in the field of risk management with enormous potential to make waves in the insurance industry.

Quotes from investors

“Andrey and his team have shown a deep understanding of the inner workings of the derivatives market. We believe that Opium is very well positioned to enable broader adoption of so needed interest rate swaps and credit default swaps in digital assets space. These complex derivatives are popular in the traditional financial space reaching more than $40T monthly notional volume traded. Rockaway Blockchain Fund is excited to work with Opium to create a leading trading derivatives platform.”

Viktor Fischer, Managing Partner of Rockaway Blockchain Fund

“Through asset composability across money market platforms, synthetic assets and dexs, Opium Network brings Credit Default Swaps — a Multi Trillion dollar market to DeFi. We are proud to lend our full support to Andrey and his team at Opium Network, a universal blockchain platform where users and developers can deploy, settle and trade derivatives in a trustless and professional ecosystem.”

Sherwin Lee, Managing Partner of QCP Soteria, the ventures arm of QCP Capital and Keith Chia, the founding partner of DeFi Capital.

“As a decentralized derivative exchange for professional traders, Opium can offer any type of derivatives that you can see in the traditional finance world. The team has profound understanding of both derivatives and defi, which gives them the ability to issue innovative financial products in a short period and to make the platform more trader friendly. We believe derivatives are indispensable for the open finance system, and Opium can make the open finance system more comprehensive and more massively adopted.”

Xiao Feng, Chairman of HashKey Group

Stay tuned for more announcements!

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