Solana DeFi Is Starting Over — OpenBook

Decrypt | Stacy Elliott | Dec 7, 2022

Solana forks Serum launches OpenBook - Solana DeFi Is Starting Over — OpenBookSolana devs look to rebuild as they unwind DeFi on the network from Sam Bankman-Fried’s Serum, replace it with OpenBook, and plot a course for the future.

  • Serum, founded in August 2020 by a consortium that included the Solana Foundation and Bankman-Fried’s FTX and trading desk Alameda Research, was a core decentralized exchange platform and liquidity provider for the burgeoning Solana DeFi ecosystem. Its order book was crucial for DeFi on Solana, integrated into virtually all of the biggest DeFi projects on the network, like Jupiter and Raydium. But its private keys were housed within FTX—which is exactly as bad as that sounds.

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  • Following an apparent hack on FTX on November 11, the same day that the company filed for bankruptcy, DeFi projects on Solana rushed to cut ties with Serum out of fear that the private key that could be used to update the program had likewise been compromised. This effectively flipped the “off” switch on Solana DeFi.
  • OpenBook: Since then, Solana developers, investors, and other stakeholders have been scrambling to turn it back on, pushing ahead with a fork of Serum—essentially a copy of the code, free of any ties to Bankman-Fried or FTX.
    • Now, the community behind OpenBook, the successor to Serum, has to wrestle with some thorny tokenomics questions after reaching $2.7 million total value locked since it was added to DeFi Llama last week.
  • Grants being offered to qualifying projects to rebuild:  “The foundation is very keen on funding grants, at least for the foreseeable future, for OpenBook development so that we can maintain this core piece of liquidity infrastructure for DeFi, however that well is not infinite,” Ben Sparango, head of business development at Solana Labs, said during the call.
    • “Each one of these grants will be evaluated on a case-by-case basis. So it’s not going to be free money forever.”

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Solana co-founder Anatoly Yakovenko:

The community's evolution of Serum to OpenBook has been great to watch.  The community mobilized quickly and in the open to redeploy Serum so it continues on a new, secure path, with decisions made by and for the community members,” he said. “Open Book is a great demonstration of decentralization in action.

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