Liquidity aggregator projects, which source token liquidity from multiple decentralized exchanges, have been a hit in the DeFi ecosystem this year.
These projects have gained traction fast because they offer traders the ability to trade efficiently, and they help stabilize a given token’s entire market.
But what we haven’t seen a lot of in the cryptoeconomy to date is liquidity aggregators that source liquidity both from DEXes and CEXes, or centralized crypto exchanges. This model makes a lot of sense, but it’s not the easiest thing to accomplish. So this is where the upstart Orion Protocol project comes in.
What Is Orion Protocol?
Steered by former Waves software architect Alexey Koloskov, Orion Protocol is a DeFi platform that brings together elements from brokerages, exchanges, and trading apps into a single, user-friendly portal.
Underpinning the platform is a liquidity aggregator system that’s linked to Orion’s own in-house DEX as well as to a range of top crypto exchanges. This system means Orion’s users can rest easy knowing their trade quotes are as accurate as possible.
When it comes to security the Orion Protocol is notably non-custodial, too, meaning traders never have to worry about the “not your keys, not your crypto” maxim when trading on the platform.
Orion’s Top Products
The Orion Protocol offers a series of flagship products that, collectively, help comprise the project’s “universal gateway to crypto markets.” These products include the following releases:
The Orion App Store, where Orion-powered decentralized apps can be safely accessed and leveraged.
A DEX Kit, through which users can readily launch their own customized and Orion-linked decentralized exchanges and Initial Exchange Offerings (IEOs) on networks like Ethereum, Stellar, and more.
A liquidity plugin offering, which lets CEXes and DEXes easily connect their liquidity to the Orion Protocol.
The Orion Terminal, an all-in-one, UX-centric crypto trading terminal that helps users efficiently trade across a variety of different exchanges.
A portfolio management app, for automating and monitoring token activities in the cryptoeconomy.
The ORN Token
At the heart of the Orion ecosystem is ORN token, a utility token built on Ethereum that will also have sister deployments on the Wanchain and Holochain platforms.
This model is notable, as many cryptoeconomy projects currently don’t embrace multi-chain implementations. From the get-go, then, the Orion team has made it a salient strategy to expand ORN’s reach via multiple networks.
As for what ORN actually does, the token is the currency needed to pay trading and service fees on Orion products. Another key element of the token is ORN staking, in which liquidity providers put up a minimum deposit of ORN in order to earn fee revenues from servicing ORN trade orders in a liquidity pool.
ORN is a governance token that will be used by the Orion community to steer the Orion Protocol, and it can also be used to unlock premium offerings, like margin trading access and beyond, the Orion team has previously explained:
“Premium users will receive signals about arbitrage opportunities, which will be sent automatically across different channels (email, browser notifications, push notifications for mobile). ORION will execute the trades for them if they indicate their interest, allowing them to generate guaranteed profits with practically zero risk. The fees for this service will be paid in ORN tokens.”
The token itself is relatively new, as the Orion project secured $3.45 million USD through a “dynamic” coin offering (DYCO) in July 2020.
Just under 9 million of the total 100 million ORN supply are currently circulating within the cryptoeconomy. The Orion team made a corrective audible in September 2020 on the heels of a hacker making off with more than $200 million in crypto assets, including a non-trivial sum of ORN, from Singaporean crypto exchange KuCoin.
To rectify so much of the ORN supply being taken over by this attacker, Orion Protocol recently conducted a token swap. The project explained at the time:
“A number of assets held on KuCoin were affected, including 3.8 million ORN. While this unfortunate situation was beyond our control, further rectifying this incident for all ORN holders is of utmost importance to us. In order to prevent the hacker profiting from the exploit at the expense of the ORN community, we took the executive decision to reissue all ORN tokens 1:1 via a token swap.”
Binance Just Listed ORN
Binance is among the most influential and high-profile cryptocurrency exchanges in the world.
That’s why the Orion Protocol community was elated when on September 29th Binance announced it had opened ORN deposits and listed the ORN/BTC and ORN/USDT trading pairs.
On that day, excitement converted into acute buy pressure that pushed the token’s price to a local top of $3.90. ORN’s reigning all-time high came back on August 13th when the token’s price reached $6.94 according to cryptoeconomy data site CoinGecko.
Along with the ORN listing, Binance promptly published the Orion Protocol’s associated Binance Research Project Report. Therein, the exchange briefly detailed the fundamentals of the liquidity aggregator and the ORN token.
The Future of Orion
So what comes next for the project? The protocol’s current roadmap explains:
“The platform will remain under constant and active development, starting with the improvement of current features, support for additional cryptocurrencies, implementations for ICO investments, asset and portfolio management, the crypto index funds marketplace, and ultimately a fully decentralized platform.”
As for specifics, a tentative quarter-by-quarter breakdown for the near future looks like so:
Q4 2020: The Orion Terminal and Orion Enterprise Trade systems launch. This period sees the project’s volume increase and the beginning of B2B revenue streams.
Q1 2021: The Liquidity Boost and Trading Signals Plugins launch, which will improve the Orion experience for Orion’s partners and retail customers alike.
Q2 2021: The DEX kit and a suite of Orion-based dApp tools will be released. This will give users and developers easy tools to build their own blockchain projects.
“Similar to traditional staking models, Brokers are chosen to execute trades based on how much ORN, Orion’s native token, they stake in the Decentralized Brokerage,” Orion’s Yanush Ali has explained of the system.
To serve as such a broker, users must run what’s known as Orion Broker Software. Notably, on October 1st the Orion Protocol team announced that its inaugural broker software was ready ahead of the coming Orion private mainnet release, noting:
“The Private Main Net will be rigorously tested to a closed group of developers and auditors for functionality and security optimization, with a focus on testing and optimizing performance, stability, security, and efficiency. This significant milestone is the final phase prior to Orion Terminal’s launch to the public, set for this quarter.”
Orion Protocol is doing some interesting things, not least among them being how the liquidity aggregator is pioneering the aggregation of liquidity from both DEXes and CEXes.
But with how all roads lead to ORN around the Orion Protocol ecosystem, it’s clear the Orion team is trying to turn the protocol and its flagship products into revenue-generating machines.
By making it so ORN is key at all levels of the protocol, the Orion Protocol team has created structural conditions that will seemingly feed into the health of ORN over time. Orion’s got a chance to be a contender accordingly.