Sentinel’s Next Chapter: The Path to dVPN Mass Adoption

Sentinel
Sentinel
Mar 11 · 9 min read

Sentinel undergoes its biggest development since the inception of the peer-to-peer network: the transition to the Sentinel mainnet with institutional backing.

We would like to thank both Sentinel’s dedicated community and the Cosmos ecosystem for being a part of Sentinel’s three-year-long journey leading up to the network’s transition to its Cosmos-based mainnet. The process for swapping Sentinel ERC-20 tokens to Sentinel’s mainnet token will begin on March 27th, 2021.

The Sentinel community has been incredibly supportive of the growth and development of the network. One thing has become abundantly clear: for Sentinel to achieve mass adoption of decentralized VPN, the network must have strong institutional backing and the SNT Foundation must be well capitalized. The Foundation worked arduously on this need and conducted a raise to support the Sentinel ecosystem with some of the top minds in blockchain.

This blog post is focused on Sentinel’s institutional capital raise and its significance on the growth and the momentum of the Sentinel ecosystem going forward.

To find out more about the mission and purpose of the Sentinel Network, view the Whitepaper here: https://sentinel.co/whitepaper

Challenging the Status Quo

Sentinel strives to challenge the status quo and prove that decentralized networks have the ability to provide utility as well as monetization for the mainstream user.

https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=co.sentinel.sentinellite

For dVPNs built on Sentinel’s framework to make a real tangible impact on the way people all over the world secure their communications, these dVPNs must target users from a broader audience beyond general crypto-native users.

dVPN applications built on Sentinel are currently installed on over 200,000 Android devices alone (excluding uninstallations) and are being used by tens of thousands of active non-crypto native users on a daily basis. These dVPNs will be bringing real fiat revenue into Sentinel’s decentralized economy when they begin monetizing through traditional fiat payment gateways (e.g ApplePay, credit card).

After Sentinel’s transition to its Cosmos-based mainnet, dVPNs built on Sentinel will be amongst the first dApps to use traditional payment channels to incentivize a distributed and decentralized network of service providers (bandwidth node hosts).

The Velocity dVPN is a 3rd party dVPN built on the Sentinel framework and is a quintessential example of the scalability of Sentinel’s vision and customer acquisition strategy.

The Velocity dVPN is a 3rd Party dVPN built on the Sentinel Framework

The Velocity dVPN is already installed on over 100k Android devices and is actively sharing the same community-based bandwidth resource pool that Sentinel’s cross-platform dVPNs are utilizing.

Within the coming years, the Sentinel ecosystem will consist of dozens of cross-platform dVPN applications created by 3rd party developers who assume the responsibilities of the brand strategy and marketing strategy for the application, while monetizing through traditional fiat channels and paying service providers in exchange for provably encrypted and secure bandwidth.

Sentinel is fortunate to be supported by an array of top blockchain projects, development firms, security companies, alliances, cloud hosting providers, and marketing agencies. This list does not include the additional partners supporting the project that participated in Sentinel’s capital raise.

With the ability to provide competitive pricing as well as the security and trust of an open-source application, dVPN applications built on Sentinel have the ability to onboard millions of users and generate revenues significant enough to take away market share from the centralized VPN industry.

Significance of the Transition to Mainnet

For the Sentinel network, the transition to mainnet is much more than the establishment of a native Cosmos-based consensus and the conversion of Sentinel’s ERC-20 into the Cosmos-based Sentinel token. The transition to mainnet represents an opportunity for Sentinel to transform from an obscure network with little visibility to a fully transparent and well-funded ecosystem that is capable of aggressively onboarding more developers and marketing resources.

In 2017, Sentinel conducted a modest token sale of $2M, sustaining the network and its growth for over 3 years. With the budget focused primarily on the sustainability of product development, the Sentinel ecosystem was unable to achieve community expansion through premiere centralized exchange listings, public relations, and marketing efforts.

Regardless of resources, the Sentinel ecosystem focused on user adoption and consumer education. These efforts have seen the dVPN industry transition from being ‘focused on an unproven narrative,’ to a market segment that has some of the world’s most prolific investors as stakeholders.

In 2018 and 2019, the aggregate market cap of all dVPN projects combined stood at less than $10M at one point. Today the aggregate market cap of all dVPN projects is climbing towards $500M and the recent entry of investors such as Sequoia and Andreessen Horowitz in this market segment shows that the dVPN sector is at a very nascent stage in its growth cycle.

Sentinel is poised to be a leader in the dVPN industry and currently has the highest degree of quantifiable user adoption in this sector.

Institutional Capital Raise

Beginning in 2020, Sentinel conducted a strategic capital raise of $3.5M, involving reputable institutions and accomplished industry veterans.

This raise has a significant impact on the growth and the momentum of the Sentinel ecosystem going forward, allowing for:

  1. The increase in development resources dedicated towards the Sentinel Cosmos-based ‘Hub’ and the Sentinel dVPN network
  2. Community expansion and increased user adoption through PR/Marketing efforts as well as demographic-specific marketing efforts
  3. Onboarding onto reputable centralized exchanges which allow for Sentinel’s native token to be accessible to a larger audience

Increase in Development Resources

The recent capital raise allows for the ability for the scaling of development resources dedicated towards the Sentinel ecosystem and its roadmap. The increase in development resources will increase overall bandwidth and result in faster delivery and adherence to timelines.

The Sentinel Roadmap for 2021

Sentinel’s development arm Exidio is a for-profit implementation-focused organization that has the mission of ‘Providing Secure Access to the Web 3.0’ by contributing to and implementing on the Sentinel dVPN framework and Sentinel’s Cosmos-based blockchain infrastructure. Exidio is actively deploying resources to scale its operations and staff. If you’re a developer, please reach out to srini@exidio.co. Exidio has tons of opportunities for those that are looking to help build a more free, secure access to the decentralized web.

If you’re a Full-Stack Dev, please apply here: https://apply.workable.com/exidio/

Exidio’s technical team is led by Sentinel’s core contributor ironman0x7b2 (Srini) who has substantiated his competence and understanding of developing and modifying the Cosmos SDK with his recent performance in the Game of Zones competition.

Srini is focused on assembling and leading a world-class team with significant blockchain and networking expertise that has the ability to fully execute on Sentinel’s ambitious roadmap.

Participants of the Captial Raise

Sentinel and the community are humbled by the amount of interest and support received in this round from a diverse set of supporters of Sentinel. The protocol investment focused institutions which have participated in the Sentinel capital raise include:

Woodstock Fund, AGE Fund, Atka Capital, Pangea Blockchain, Exnetwork Capital, Zokyo Ventures, 01 Capital, Genblock Capital, Digital Strategies, Advanced Blockchain AG, Mempol Ventures

Prominent heads of Wachsman, AU21 Capital, Alphablock Investments, D1 Ventures, builders of Tendermint, leaders of Persistence, Akash Network, Secret Network, StakeWithUs, stakefish, SG-1, Bridge Mutual, SALT Lending, Tavis Digital, Biconomy, Giant Leaf Capital, XMonetae Capital, Infinite Lux, Crypto Guerillas, Ravindra Kumar of Frontier as well as other individual investors participated in the round.

Leaders across the blockchain ecosystem: venture funds + individuals from web 3.0 projects, marketing firms, and validators participated in the private offering

Sentinel’s institutional capital raise began in Q4 of 2020 and ended in February 2021, with a fixed token sale price of $0.0025 per Sentinel token. In this round, 1.4 billion Sentinel tokens were offered to strategic partners.

The participants of this capital raise acknowledge the merit of the Sentinel network’s adoption to date. They also recognize and support the requirement for the Sentinel ecosystem to become further capitalized in order to stay competitive in the rapidly growing dVPN market segment.

“Is it better to have a half of a grape or a quarter of a watermelon?”

Token Supply Amendment

Sentinel’s original ERC-20 distribution that was outlined in 2017 consisted of 75% of the token supply being owned by the community. As the Sentinel network transitions from Ethereum to Sentinel’s own Cosmos-based chain, the total circulating supply of tokens in the network will increase from 2 billion to a total of 10 billion tokens over the next 5 years.

Incentive for Existing SENT ERC-20 Token Holders

Existing SENT ERC-20 token holders will have the option to receive a bonus of 400m (20% of current supply) Cosmos-based tokens upon conducting the swap and staking their tokens for a minimum of 12 consecutive months. This bonus will have a 12-month cliff and it will be distributed over a period of 12 months vested. Monitoring and tracking for this incentive scheme will begin only 10 days after the launch of the Sentinel mainnet. Users will not have to have tokens in the genesis block to be eligible for this incentive.

It is important to note that the lock-up schedule for the team, treasury, and marketing are designed to not release any tokens for the first year and the distribution schedule is heavily weighted towards the later years compared to earlier years. For example, 0%, 12%, 30%, 60%, 100% of those attributed allocations will be distributed in years 1, 2, 3, 4, and 5, respectively.

Behind every successful project is sound token economics. It is critical that token economics are structured so that incentives for the community, ecosystem, participants, and team are built for long-term growth and continued success of the network.

This economic model was chosen due to its similarity to several other successful projects within the Proof of Stake blockchain ecosystem today.

This increase in token supply not only allows for the Sentinel ecosystem to become further capitalized in the immediate future but also allows for a very sustainable longer-term incentivization structure for:

1)Onboarding ecosystem partners and VPN organizations

2)Bootstrapping and incentivizing node hosts

3)Incentivizing full time team and community-based developers

As was mentioned, the primary focus of this raise was to bring on strategic partners who have a vested interest in the long-term success of Sentinel’s mission to be not only the most used VPN network in the world but also critical Web 3.0 infrastructure.

With such an ambitious roadmap, the team chose what we believe is one of the longest vesting periods within the industry, with a five year total vesting period.

We understand this is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to make a meaningful impact on the internet, and the journey will be a long one as we build a robust decentralized VPN ecosystem. Thus, we must show our long-term commitment to those who have supported us to date as well as future supporters.

The Announcement for Mainnet

A detailed article containing instructions on the token swap process will be released in the coming weeks prior to mainnet.

Sentinel’s swap process from its current ERC-20 token to its native Cosmos-based token will begin on March 27th.

Alongside the mainnet swap, Sentinel will be changing the token ticker symbol upon genesis of mainnet launch. The ticker will be revealed once has been secured on both CoinMarketCap and CoinGecko and will be listed on MXC with this new ticker.

Token holders will be able to swap their existing tokens to Sentinel’s native Cosmos-based chain via:

  1. Ethereum-based smart contracts

or

2. Supporting centralized exchanges

Token holders who convert their ERC-20 tokens into Sentinel’s Cosmos-based tokens will be able to deposit and immediately stake their tokens by using Sentinel’s custom-built Cosmos-based desktop wallet.

Readers who are interested to simulate the experience of making token transfers and staking tokens to validators on Sentinel’s mainnet can download and test the latest wallet release that is currently operating on Sentinel’s Testnet (explorer.sentinel.co).

Sentinel’s custom-built Cosmos-based wallet

The latest version of Sentinel’s Cosmos-based custom staking wallet is now available for community testing at https://t.me/v3wallet.

Users can report feedback on the application at:

https://forms.gle/6iPrJ7kEDRVjYPiw6

Sentinel

An interoperable networking layer for distributed services.

Sentinel

An interoperable networking layer for distributed services. Developed decentralized VPN as first use case. Learn more at Sentinel.co

Sentinel

Written by

Sentinel

Interoperable Network Layer for bandwidth sharing and incentivization. Developed the Sentinel dVPN on the Sentinel Network — More about us, https://sentinel.co

Sentinel

An interoperable networking layer for distributed services. Developed decentralized VPN as first use case. Learn more at Sentinel.co

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