Below is the transcript from the AMA session with Dr. Hash on May 6th, 2021
NFT is trending hard, and Binance is on track to make their own NFT related products. Since Alpaca Finance has NFTs planned in the Q2 roadmap, and Alpaca just released the first NFT a couple of days ago, what are the main attractions for Alpaca’s future NFT campaigns? Can we get a sneak peek? What would be the main benefits for our community from this campaign? We are eager to learn more about it.
Yes, we released our first NFT two days ago. It’s episode 1/4 of an animated short series with a storyline, which is the first NFT of this kind that I’m aware of, making it monumental in the NFT space. It also sets up our Alpaca universe and lore. There’ll be three more of these which are only available for the first users of our platform. In the future, we’ll also be releasing other exclusive NFTs for loyal users.
Besides that, we have big big plans for NFTs. We’re not supposed to talk about most of it, but…I suppose I could give a sneak peek to one thing.
So for one, in our new Grazing Range program, users will be able to stake ibALPACA to farm reward tokens from our partners’ pools. Yet, besides for getting high APYs from the token rewards, the staking pools will also function for NFT farming! Stakers will be able to get exclusive NFT cards for each project they stake in, and there will be limited edition versions like silver and gold NFT cards for users who stake larger amounts.
In addition, as you might have noticed on the poster for this AMA, we’ll be doing event-based NFTs, dropping exclusive NFTs only available to participants who attend these events. So, at the end of this AMA, we’ll also be doing an NFT drop! But claiming the NFT will only be available for a few minutes so don’t go to the bathroom for too long!
There’s quite a lot of lending projects in the market right now, what makes Alpaca Finance stand out in terms of specific product and features?
First, if we’re only talking about lending, we definitely compete for the highest APYs in all our assets: BNB, BUSD, ETH, ALPACA, etc. Especially for BUSD, depending on the amount of borrowers, the APY climbs to between 50 and 80% not infrequently.
Second, unlike other platforms, we have no deposit fees, no withdrawal fees, and no hidden fees. These can be quite significant and subtract a lot from the displayed APY. With us though, what you see is what you get.
Third, it’s because we’re very safe. As a matter of fact, I believe if we were to declare Alpaca Finance was the second safest lending protocol, no platform would dare say they were the first! 🤣
Just kidding. However, even though we’re one of the newest projects with TVL in the billions of USD, we’ve become the first leveraged yield farming protocol in all of crypto, and the second largest lending platform on BSC, all for a good reason — users trust us. And that’s because we worked hard to earn their trust, by making our platform as secure as possible through a number of initiatives.
First, we’ve made the token as dump-proof as possible. Our ALPACA token is fair launch, with 87% of total supply going to platform participants. The team is only getting less than 9% of tokens, and that’s vested over 2 years. We also had no presale, no pre-mine, and no investors, so there’s no one to dump on token holders.
Then, we’ve made the platform rug-proof. We burned our LP tokens in the ALPACA-BNB PancakeSwap pool so they can’t be withdrawn. We’ve also locked up our LP tokens from the sALPACA-ALPACA pool in Wault Locker so they can’t be withdrawn until the pool closes. So our users know that with us, there will never be any “unwanted surprises.”
What about security? What measures has Alpaca Finance taken to maximize the security of user funds on the platform?
First, our code is open-source, with every line having been combed through by hundreds of independent developers. We even have an ongoing bug bounty program to offer them high rewards if they spot as little as a minor issue. If you’re a developer, we invite you to have a look through our github yourself.
We’ve also had multiple top security firms provide audits for our code. All our smart contracts have been audited by PeckShield. We also have a second audit with Certik, which is due to be completed this week. We even just scheduled new audits with PeckShield and SlowMist.
Furthermore, there are built-in safeguards in place. For example, all the contracts we deploy are owned by a Timelock contract. Thus, any changes made by our developers will have a 24-hour lag before becoming effective. That means users will have ample time to withdraw their funds and exit safely in the case of any questionable update to the code. With tens of thousands of users, you can believe that every small change is under constant scrutiny from many participants. It’s tiring at times, but we place security as our first priority.
What are the immediate next steps for Alpaca Finance?
Our dev team expanded this week so we’ll be ramping things up soon. Actually, it scares me a little thinking about it because we had 1315 github commits in the past 2 months. I think that might be some kind of DeFi record…
Anyway, in the next few weeks, our now larger team will be launching new features. We’re adding borrowing from both sides of a farming pair, so for pairs like ALPACA-BUSD, you’ll be able to borrow BUSD to go leveraged long on ALPACA. This will create a lot more buying for ALPACA.
We’re also working on partial closing of positions with the ability to customize leverage, which will decrease price impact for big orders.
We’ll also be adding a BTCB lending vault.
Then, we’ll be creating an API because many developers and projects have asked us for this so they can build new apps off of us.
We also have a number of partnerships in the works. Next week, we have three new Grazing Range pools opening with us: Belt.fi, Multiplier.finance, and BoringDAO. We also have 5–10 partners after that but those are unannounced.
Well, I can’t guarantee we’ll finish 100% of this during these next few weeks but we’ll try our best..
Why is the platform called Alpaca Finance? Is it because the team loves alpacas?
We love Alpacas and why wouldn’t we? They’re magical creatures. Well, if you’ve never gotten the opportunity to enjoy seeing a real one, that’s okay. If you collect enough of our NFTs, it’s almost as good! 🤣
Samsara’s Q & A
When will we see physical products of ALPACA?
With physical products, we’re going with the exclusive route. You will need to hold Alpaca to get official merchandise which will not be easy to get. We may also integrate it with NFTs. As for when, after we incorporate our NFT utility system so somewhere in Q3 probably
Alpaca Finance is doing well in the aspects of safety, high rewards, and long term plans, the only thing that I think you can do better is the accessibility of the products since it’s not very easy to use. If you can solve this problem I’m sure there’ll be a lot more new users.
We work on making it simpler every day and we have some plans.
The max leverage rate is set in default of 2–4x. Is it possible for us to customize it if I’m willing to take on more risks?
The max leverage is there to protect users from getting liquidated. Many people tend to chase the higher APYs, so if we just open higher leverage, it may be risky for them. So in the future, rather than make it riskier for everyone, we’ll probably do something like have higher leverage for advanced users. How would we know a user is advanced? One way perhaps, would be that they own certain NFTs and thus have been with Alpaca for a long time
Will Alpaca Finance go cross-chain?
Yes, planned for Q4. Many chains have been reaching out to us as well. If they give certain benefits, doing it early isn’t impossible. After all, we’ve been expanding our team. But we want to secure our dominance on BSC first.
Why would Alpaca Finance launch synthetic asset and stable coin? What role do they play in the big picture?
The problem with many defi protocols now is they don’t have very good capital efficiency for their assets. For example, you stake somewhere and then your staked funds just sit there, doing nothing. Synthetics are one way to further leverage staked funds, in order to deliver maximum APYs to the users. We have some plans regarding this, and details will be coming out at the end of this month, most likely.
The BUSD-ALPACA pool seems to be encouraging ALPACA users to short ALPACA, can you tell us the reasons for the function?
2x is not a short. At 2x leverage, you open neutral. The reason we did this was because we wanted to add the ALPACA pool and for that, it’s best to have a pair to borrow ALPACA into. However, we will soon introduce double-sided borrowing so you will be able to borrow BUSD and long ALPACA.
Will you launch the function of collateral?
Collateral? Technically, leveraged yield farming does use collateral. But yes, we have plans for the collateral I believe you are asking about.
Another quickie: since there is no early investors, how did Alpaca team fund the initial development and added liquidity for BNB-ALPACA LP?
Personal funds. It didn’t cost that much because we made an ALPACA-BNB staking pool, people staked it quickly.
What is the main purpose of launching on major exchanges such as Binance？ how well does the alpaca team ‘s capability handle more funds and users?
The main purpose? To gain access to capital, namely users not in DeFi and dexes, mostly retail. There will be no problem with scaling. We’re at 2B now and have one of the largest user bases on BSC.