Categories: Crypto News

Ethena’s TVL Soars, MakerDAO Eyes $600 Million DAI Boost

  • Ethena's total value locked (TVL) surged by over 1,700% to $1.57 billion, fueled by high yields and a significant airdrop event, demonstrating the protocol's growing influence in the DeFi sector.
  • MakerDAO has proposed allocating $600 million in DAI to USDe and sUSDe, indicating a strategic investment aimed at supporting Ethena's expansion and further increasing its TVL.
  • The proposal and Ethena's growth strategy have sparked debate within the crypto community, with some industry figures expressing concerns over the potential risks associated with such rapid expansion and investment strategies.
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South Africa’s crypto community watches closely as the decentralized finance (DeFi) protocol Ethena (ENA) experiences a remarkable surge in its total value locked (TVL), which has escalated by more than 1,700% since the year’s start, topping $1.57 billion (approximately R29.6 billion).

This growth spurt is attributed to its lucrative yield opportunities and a highly anticipated airdrop that has the ecosystem buzzing. In a significant development, the lending platform MakerDAO has proposed to inject $600 million (about R11.3 billion) of its DAI decentralized stablecoin into USDe and sUSDe, showcasing a robust vote of confidence in Ethena’s burgeoning platform.

Ethena’s journey to prominence began with the mainnet launch of its USDe synthetic stablecoin on February 19, following successful funding rounds that attracted heavyweight backers like Dragonfly, alongside Binance Labs, Bybit, OKX Ventures, and Gemini. The launch, promising a yield of 27.6%, garnered widespread attention within the crypto sphere, especially in the shadow of the Terra UST collapse, which had similarly high yield offerings. Ethena, however, reassures stakeholders that USDe operates on a fundamentally different mechanism, anchoring its stability and yield generation on collateralized staked Ethereum and strategic delta hedging against Ethereum on centralized exchanges.

The protocol’s TVL surge to $1.57 billion is propelled further by the deployment of its governance token, ENA, airdrop, distributing 750 million ENA tokens, accounting for 5% of its total supply, to USDe holders. This event has not only heightened interest but also facilitated listings on prestigious exchanges such as Binance, Bybit, and Bitpanda, opening up more avenues for trade.

This pivotal moment is further underscored by a proposal from Spark SubDAO within the MakerDAO forum, aiming to allocate 600 million DAI to USDe and sUSDe via Morpho Labs. The initiative is designed to scale in alignment with Ethena’s growth, maintaining a cautious cap at this juncture to bolster the TVL significantly. Ethena is also exploring the expansion of its delta hedging strategies to include Bitcoin, diversifying its investment approaches.

However, the proposal has not been without its detractors. Marc Zeller, co-founder of Aave, labeled the move as “reckless,” igniting debates within the community. Similarly, crypto analyst TardFiWhale.eth, renowned for anticipating the UST debacle, has raised concerns over potential risks associated with Ethena’s USDe, particularly in light of MakerDAO’s proposed shift.

As Ethena strides forward with its innovative DeFi offerings, the South African crypto market remains vigilant, keenly observing the developments and their broader implications on the DeFi landscape and regulatory discourse.


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Nonhlanhla P Dube is a senior news reporter. Nonhlanhla is a student of International Relations at the University of South Africa. She reports primarily on personal finance and economics. You can contact her on: Email: