Will Smithies
Published in
6 min readAug 2, 2021



A coordination experiment by a group of kiwis 🥝

Over the past two years, a group of close friends with different skills, personalities, and hobbies have worked together under the canopy of decentralised ideologies to achieve mutually beneficial outcomes.

Although DAOs are a new concept to most, the foundations of what makes this coordination special are ancient, and have long existed in all communities.

High levels of trust and strong friendships require effort to flourish. From supporting each other in times of need, to booking an Airbnb for a holiday or collectively organising an event, time and energy must be committed in order to achieve optimal outcomes.

Whether it’s a village working together to put food on the table or a digital community issuing grants to build new technology, humans consistently gravitate towards each other and work together to achieve what we need.

Whats makes this DAO special:

  • We had one objective; how can we best coordinate a group of friends with a shared goal of fun, collaboration and success?
  • TyanDAO is the first of its kind. We’re taking a digitally oriented philosophy backed by technology, and putting it to use with a group of friends.
  • Collectively we have a vast array of skills. This experience and knowledge includes a spectrum that spans: crypto wizardry and technologies, accounting and risk management, music and arts, construction, fabrication, public services and scientific research.
  • We’re open to experimentation and seeing what we can achieve by coordinating time and capital in a transparent way.
  • We have a shared vision of making our home town Ōtautahi Christchurch a great place to live, work and thrive.
  • All 20+ members of TyanDAO have been close friends for years, this gives us the means to go further.

The last year of Tyan 📆

July 2020, Queenstown NZ, Tyan DAO inception:

Queenstown 2020

Talk of the DAO had been around for a while, but it was a skiing and party holiday post Covid lockdown that turned it into a reality. By deciding to bundle together some Ether with the goal of investing in the technologies future and another mid winter trip the next year🎿, the first TyanDAO funds were introduced.

Using DAOhaus, we summoned a DAO, deposited our WXETH into the DAO and got everyone setup with an xdai wallet, each being assigned one ownership share.

The first official roundtable January 2021

We had our first roundtable meeting, with notes taken and sent to those of us overseas. It was a humbling experience where everyone talked through what the DAO meant to them and we shared our ideas, thoughts and concerns, creating a mental note on our constitution. We set a rule and started contributing time and funds weekly to the DAO.

A space of our own

With us itching to work on plenty of ideas one thing became clear; we need a space, a space for work, a space for new ideas and a space to hang out.

We started looking for somewhere that could contain TyanDAO, and after finding a decent sized warehouse with an upstairs mezzanine floor, we immediately scheduled a viewing. Sporting a central city location, within budget and large enough to do what we wanted, it was perfect. But there was one immediate issue, signing a lease agreement with 22 names creates difficulties so how would we actually secure the space, collectively, as a DAO? The answer to this, as boring as it is: we spun up a company. We wanted this space fast and this was the easiest way to instantly setup a bank account, which we needed in order to send fiat for rent, as well as act as a means for our smaller NZD contributions to the DAO.


With the Haus secured, we needed to kit the place out whilst leveraging the DAOs unique set of skills… 🔊🛹

Nols on the decks while the miniramp takes shape

Work began the first night as Nols whipped up his DJ booth and Callum gets to work on the miniramp.

After a long day, an impromptu party took place - giving us the chance to test out the miniramp, acoustics, and recycling bin 🥂

With the internet and a lounge being our two biggest priorities, we got fibre connected, the servers setup, gave the place a good clean, rebuilt some walls and added a few coats of paint. The lounge is now in its optimal state, with a big couch, big TV and some skateboard art on the wall.

With downstairs looking good, we got to work kitting out the upstairs mezzanine floor - where Tyan, Axia Labs and Studio Ham will live during all working hours!

We painted walls, bought and setup furniture, sorted IT infrastructure and mounted a basketball hoop! 🏀

The completed sign is up

We had the previous tenants sign up for a few weeks as we waited for Liam to finish fabricating a new sign from scratch. It was no easy feat getting the old sign down and the new one up, but as per, effective coordination prevailed and it was installed with only a day to spare prior to the first event!

Once the basics were in place, it was decided that the Haus needed some vibrancy so the DTR crew came through and they put an amazing piece up on the wall. Shoutout to Dcypher, Ikarus and Yikes for spending the weekend here.

With everything falling into place, it was time to host our first event. With New Zealand’s Techweek was about to begin, Axia Labs decided to kick things off at TyanHaus - a follow up to the ‘DAOs and DeFi’ event hosted across New Zealand in 2019.

A packed out Haus for DAOs and DeFi during NZs Techweek. Mural up on the wall

TyanDAO has officially been born, and it never would have happened without the hard work of all 20+ DAO members, as well as countless others who’ve lent a hand along the way. From the local building yard hooking us up with discounts on supplies after learning what we’re up to, to the wider Ethereum community for their constant inspiration, we can’t thank everyone enough!

With TyanHaus looking the part, an event under the belt and more in the pipeline, it is going to be exciting to see what we can achieve working together in the future.

Follow the socials, stay in the loop and see what’s next for TyanDAO!