Recap of PromoTeam AMA session with VP of Growth for Astar & Shiden Network, Maarten

Vlady Limes: Hello everyone! We are excited to have an opportunity to talk with today’s guest. His name is Marteen and he is VP of Growth for Astar and Shiden Network. Today we are going to ask questions from the community as well as questions from the voice chat. We are going to have a short interview and don’t take much of your time. We’ll check these questions and choose the best ones later. I think it’s time to start!

Marteen: Hello everyone! Okay, thank you.

Vlady Limes: Let’s talk a little bit about past crowdloans. Could you describe what was interesting there for you? Were there any projects that you would like to highlight? Did you noticed some unexpected things during this time?

Marteen: Ok, little bit about crowdloan on Kusama. Everything went like we planned. We were expecting to be one of the top three and we were able get the third auction slot, so we are really happy to be connected to the Relay chain of Kusama. So like Kusama was saying “Expect chaos” this was something that was very true it was really chaotic to the start of the crowdloan to get the crowdloan running then the auctions then getting the promotion and marketing done and finally be able to get a slot was a big reward for all of the work from the development team as the whole starting and for the community as well. Thank you.

Vlady Limes: Great, super! There is one more question about crowdloans. I’ve noticed when Shiden began participation for the third slot nobody wanted to compete because everybody understood that most likely Shiden is going to win. Nevertheless, the fourth and the fifth slot had a really tough competition. What do you think why did this happen that way?

Marteen: Yes, indeed. The slot that we joined wasn’t competitive the main reason was that we mainly had enough funds to get at third parachain and at that moment there wasn’t any competitor to compete with us because they didn’t raise that much KSM that was the same reason why we didn’t joined the auction for the first one or the second one because we saw that the amount raised by the projects like the first from Acala and the second by Moonriver. There were too much for us to join the auction because it wouldn’t make sense to join and that was the same for the third slot other parachains wouldn’t compete with us because it was too much KSM funded at the auction ending period like the candle auction and it wasn’t possible to beat us at the certain point. We think for the future slots will be more competitors going on because the price will be a little bit lower and as soon Kusama will start opening new slots will be more competition going on that the first five. Thank you!

Vlady Limes: Recently, it was announced that Astar network is launching ambassador program, so could you please tell us when the active phase will begin or any information that you can share with us and community?

Marteen: Yeah, of course. So we recently have decided to start the new ambassador program to revamp it actually to make it more attractive for users as well because we are community driven project we also believe that having the community involved and ambassadors in promoting the ecosystem from the start this should be rewarded. And that’s why we created not only ambassador program but we also created a community rewards program where the community can also earn rewards, native tokens from Shiden network by doing just promotion work for our ecosystem. You can look at it as some kind of bounty or community rewards so we will start with this at the beginning of August when will be trial period and we test out new system and it will go live September or the beginning of October depending on the feedback we will get during the test period. So I can recommend everyone if you are interesting in earning some native tokens from Shiden have a look in our form in couple of days when we will announce it and spread the word about our ecosystem and we hope we can count on everyone. You can even apply for the investor program if you are interested in doing some more things for the ecosystem as well.

Vlady Limes: Excellent, everything is pretty clear with ambassador program. These days, we are having a lot of questions about Shiden tokens and what people can do with it. Is it possible to stake tokens? If not, when will it go live and how it will look like? Sorry Marteen, but this is a really popular question in Russian community.

Marteen: I understand, no problem. Thanks, Vlady. So yesterday we had some exciting news we distributed all Shiden tokens to all the participants during the crowdloan. Everyone who joined during the crowdloan has received SDN tokens and also those who joined the lockdrop one and lockdrop two they also have got their Shiden tokens. For those, who joined through exchanges they still need to wait some time because the transactions are locked. What can yo do something with your tokens? This will be very soon because next week we will start two phases of Proof-of-Stake. First, we will start with onboarding our players and the second phase that you can use your tokens to stake on those collators. From that point staking starts it would be around next week or maybe beginning of the week after, but very soon you can start staking your tokens in our ecosystem, even though they are locked or vested even these tokens can be used for staking.

Vlady Limes: Wow, it’s a great news, really. Especially staking of vested tokens, because people are asking all the time about this, everybody knows that crowdloan token has some vesting period and it’s not possible to use it immediately. In terms of vesting, as far as I know, Sota Watanabe posted the distribution graphic recently. It shows all the information about vesting periods and unlocks, could you please tell us if this information going to be changed somehow or is it the final version?

Marteen: Okay, let’s talk about vesting. What’s actually is going to happen with tokens that are vested now? So, actually the vesting will start at block 200,000 and now Shiden I think around 102,000 blocks or something. At 200,000 blocks vesting period starts I can’t say the exact date but it’s around August 6th it will be around the block 200,000, at that point vesting will start and the tokens will be unlocked every block. So when there’s a new block created some of you tokens will be unlocked meaning from the start of the vesting to the end of the vesting period 100% of your tokens will be unlocked. We can say every 28 days around 10% of your tokens will be unlocked but this will not be at the end of the month just 10% but every block some tokens will be unlocked. That’s how the vesting will go.

Vlady Limes: Great, thank you! The next question is also very popular in our community especially in Astar network group, I’m personally trying to translate all the incoming information from the main Astar group and publics. Recently, Sota offered to divide community in two groups. One of the group is people who wants to sell their tokens as soon as possible and the other group is people who wants to hold tokens and stay for long-term. Is it correct that this process is being discussed? Will it be done before the vesting period ends?

Marteen: Yeah, the new thing about Kusama auctions is that you don’t have to buy tokens you actually get them by locking your KSM, it’s completely new. So we need to figure out the way that users not just see this as investment like “I just wanna lock my tokens and wanna sell it immediately” because at the end that’s not how the healthy ecosystem works. We want to create the healthy ecosystem and healthy market, so we need to find some ways like staking on validators, staking on Dapps. Another way is just hold on to your tokens because you have to see our project as a long-term project and not just like making a quick buck because that’s not how it goes. We want to reward users who really believe in our project who locked their KSM tokens and really believe in what we are building. We want to reward them by holding or by staking our native tokens and when they join the auction on Polkadot they will be rewarded with the bonus because they still hold a lot of SDN tokens or they still hold on tokens that they got during the crowdloan. This things helps to create not only healthy ecosystem but also a healthy market. I think that’s is really important. One more thing, we are going to be listed on Tier 1 exchanges and having a healthy market is the best way to keep on those exchanges and have that macro liquidity as well.

Vlady Limes: Thank you, Marteen! The next question is about collators. Some of the parachain candidates have already announced that they are going to choose collators on a competitive basis. Could you please tell us how Shiden is going to choose collators and is there any chance for people from community to become one of them?

Marteen: Okay, thank you. During the first phase of onboarding collators we will only use service partners and we will also use experienced ambassodors for the first phase. Why are we doing this? Because we first want to make sure that we will work with those who have a lot of experience to make sure that network is stable enough and secure enough and then after this we will start with the second phase where everyone and every community member can start creating a collator and start onboarding a collator in the ecosystem. So in that phase two we will slowly start adding more collators to our ecosystem and this will be opened for everyone. This will go to Nominated Proof-of-Stake this method is actually created by Polkadot ecosystem where users can nominate validators and they will be selected in the next cycle to get spot as a collator. Thank you!

Vlady Limes: Wow. We are running out of time, we had an agreement for half an hour and it’s already little bit longer. Thank you so much Marteen for your time. I’ve seen your schedule it’s very, very, very busy, we appreciate it so much. We would like to make more conferences with Russian community in the near future, if possible.

Marteen: Thank you, thanks for inviting me. And also, thanks a lot to PromoTeam for all your work that you are doing, not only for Astar ecosystem but actually for the entire Polkadot and Kusama ecosystems. Thanks a lot for the work and I’m sure we will have more collaboration in the future as well. Thank you.

Shiden Network is a dApps hub on Kusama Network that supports Ethereum and layer2 technologies like Rollups. Sister network of Plasm Network.

PromoTeam is a diverse team of specialists and blockchain activists with various skills that actively promotes the Polkadot ecosystem in the English-speaking and Russian communities.

Our main activity is content production, offline and online event organization, community management and creation, product marketing, development of ambassador programs.

We also run validator nodes for Polkadot and Cosmos blockchains and participate in the Polkadot ecosystem projects as investors, advisors and contributors.

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