The Indexed Finance Roadmap — 2021 And Beyond

Indexed Finance is now just over eight months old at the time of writing, and is strongly placed as the second largest on-chain provider of index products within Ethereum.

The relative size of the index sector has increased significantly since we posted our Q2 roadmap back in April, and both our recent and scheduled upgrades put us in an good position in terms of potential market capture.

Our previous roadmap covered our Q2 2021 objectives: in contrast, this post aims to detail a longer-term set of goals, both necessary and aspirational. We remain a small core team (although we’re very open about the fact that we want to grow!), so we aren’t pegging any set deadlines to these — as we want to grant ourselves the flexibility to tackle opportunities as they arise.

Instead, this roadmap is being categorised into “will do” and “want to do”, with the second being split into two distinct groups depending on protocol partnerships and funding/manpower.

This will be a living document, rather than a set-and-forget that we point interested parties to: updates or setbacks on each point will be logged, and new goals will be added or removed as appropriate.

So, onwards!

Previous Updates

Our Q2 focus was on ‘evolving the Indexed protocol to further distinguish ourselves from our competitors, increasing the utility of the NDX governance token and indices alike’. The results (stretching into Q3) were as follows:

  • The introduction of our extended liquidity mining scheme in May. Using a fork of Sushi’s Masterchef, Indexed has committed to emitting an additional 1.5 million NDX (subject to a confirmation vote by the DAO) over the course of two years, as rewards for both the single-sided staking of select indices and liquidity provision on both Uniswap and Sushi. This hands-off solution allows us to maintain our entire liquidity reward framework from a single contract, and easily integrate with third-party platforms such as Onsen for dual-token rewards.

Those of you that have been following our announcement channel within Discord or our Twitter account are doubtless aware that there are always a handful of other things that we’ve been working on, but the three points above are those that we’re proudest of at present.

Let’s look ahead though, shall we?

“Will Do”: Scheduled Tasks & Upgrades

  1. L̶a̶u̶n̶c̶h̶ ̶d̶N̶D̶X̶ ̶[̶D̶i̶v̶i̶d̶e̶n̶d̶-̶B̶e̶a̶r̶i̶n̶g̶ ̶N̶D̶X̶]̶ [Done]

    It’s been some time coming, but after determining the final parameters needed to establish the proportion of Indexed protocol revenue to be retained by the Treasury versus that distributed to stakers of the NDX governance token, dNDX is ready to go.

    We’ll soon be announcing the deployment of the underlying staking contract (and pointing you to an interface where you can interact with it), but will wait two weeks or so before deploying the seller contract that actually converts the underlying assets into WETH for distribution, to let everyone get ‘pre-staked’ before the engine starts running.

    For more details on dNDX, read up on the forums here.

    UPDATE [25 September 2021]: dNDX is now live. Announcement article can be found here, direct link is here.

“Want To Do”: Dependent On Other Protocols

  1. Chainlink Price Feeds

    In order for products to be more widely integrated into the Ethereum ecosystem (i.e. as borrowing collateral on Aave), Chainlink price feeds are necessary: they’re now a critical part of DeFi infrastructure. In order to qualify for a Chainlink feed for a given index, we have two options: either go about it the regular way (i.e. have sufficient liquidity and volume on a daily basis on a DEX), or appeal to a custom implementation from their Feed team.

    In the first instance, we are at least an order of magnitude away from the volume required for DEFI5, our largest index. In the absence of wider public awareness (and trading) of the DEFI5, this is a good thing, as it means that the volume is linked to the NAV of the underlying assets, and only ‘spikes’ in times of significant market volatility, when arbitrageurs play their part. In particular, the DEFI5 is comprised entirely of tokens that already have Chainlink feeds: we are in discussion with Chainlink Labs regarding the potential for constructing feeds as a weighted aggregate of existing data.

“Want To Do”: Dependent On Funding/Manpower

This section is more of a call to action than anything else: we’re a core team of three full-time contributors at present, amongst a DAO of over 5,700 NDX holders. We currently have roughly half a dozen community contributors working on things such as index competitions and the State Of The Index: a weekly article diving into the performance of one of our products and a brief summary of news relating to each of its component assets.

Index products (and passive portfolio management techniques writ large) aren’t necessarily sexy, but at Indexed we see them as vital. More importantly, we think it’s important to provide index products in as decentralized a fashion as possible: with no central operator, no holding fees, open-sourcing as we go and generally building neat primitives along the way. There’s demonstrable market fit, and enough work to keep us busy for years, given the chance.

If you like the sound of any part of what we’ve described in this roadmap, we could use your help! We’re eager to grow the team, and happy to pay well for good work, whether it’s from individuals or DAOs that focus on growth and analysis. Specifically, here’s what we’re looking to improve upon:

  1. Increased Marketing Presence, Analytics and Educational Material

    It’s not unfair to ourselves to say that the biggest weakness of Indexed at present is down to public awareness (and, to a lesser degree, network effects). We consider ourselves lucky enough to be working on a protocol in a sector that’s inevitably destined for major growth: we just need the eyes. There are a host of things that we can do to improve this: Twitter threads about the indices themselves or Nirn, improved analytics on platforms such as Dune that highlight various KPIs, podcast advertisements/appearances and so on.

    If you’re reading this, you’re probably already DeFi native — and that means you can probably contribute to this in some vein. Let’s talk!

We hope that this document helps answer any questions that you have about “what’s next” for Indexed. All of the above forms a tentative long-term plan based on our current team and knowledge.

Thanks for reading, and we hope to see you in the Discord sometime!