In Q1 2022 the NEAR Foundation plans to stake 1,500,000 million NEAR on Meta Pool. This will help decentralize the allocation of NEAR tokens in new /current validator nodes and help secure the network– which are both core to Proof-of-Stake (PoS) protocols such as NEAR.
We approached the NEAR Foundation during NEARCON to explore options for collaboration in a way that could have the largest impact on the ecosystem.
We decided not to apply for a grant, since we already had meaningful commitments from our early backers and the current fee structure allowed us to bootstrap the protocol.
As an alternative, we proposed that the NEAR Foundation stake liquid tokens on our platform. Going back to our earliest AMA´s and webinars, we have said: — our goal is to help decentralize and strengthen the NEAR network — so we developed this delegation structure and began discussing it with the NEAR Foundation Funding Team.
Growth over Grants
Instead of Meta Pool receiving a sum of money in a one-time grant, we are receiving support via adoption of the Meta Pool model. The NEAR foundation will become a user of Meta Pool just like any individual user: depositing 1.5 million $NEAR tokens, which can be withdrawn at any time, and receiving the equivalent balance in stNEAR.
The NEAR Foundation’s plan to delegate such a large amount to Meta Pool is a strong vote of confidence that should send a clear message: Liquid Staking is an important part of the growing NEAR ecosystem and Meta Pool is a strong project supporting this staking model. As a prerequisite of this delegation commitment Meta Pool will complete a full review / audit of their smart contracts & codebase. Once this delegation is completed we are optimistic that other large major projects will begin to explore committing to delegations with Meta Pool in the upcoming year.
Advantages of Staking with Meta Pool.
This are the main advantages that our liquid staking platform offers:
- The tokens that are staked on Meta Pool will be capital efficient.
- Support new validator nodes coming to the network.
- Help improve the censorship resistance of the protocol.
- Incentivize retail token holders to discover liquid staking.
Tokens that are capital efficient.
When the NEAR Foundation stakes the 1.5 million NEAR on Meta Pool, the protocol will mint around 1.49 million stNEAR (approximately). This NEP-141 token can now start to flow back into the ecosystem. The NEAR Foundation Funding team will begin to explore creative ways to utilize tokens to support the broader ecosystem.
Decentralisation and Censorship Resistance
The key part here is that the NEAR tokens are not locked on one validator node and it will flow to 51 validator nodes, it will also accrue $META rewards so the NEAR Foundation will also have voting rights on our ASTRO DAO. These $META tokens could also be delegated to projects that have overlap with Meta Pool.
It is a green field opportunity that we are really excited to be collaborating with the NEAR Foundation upon. More details will be provided as we finalize the commitment date.
Securing the allocated tokens.
Another important aspect to disclose is that the tokens will be non-custodial, that means that during the 24 months that it will provide staking to Meta Pool the NEAR Foundation will have complete control over the tokens.
Being the new validator on the block.
Launching a validator node requires work, just have a look around the documentation or ask the Open Shards Alliance Discord, it requires deep knowledge and a team that can maintain the infrastructure to keep the node running efficiently and be cost effective.
When NEAR Foundation starts staking on Meta Pool, it will distribute those one and half million NEAR tokens to new nodes and also allocate it to the top performing nodes that sit outside the Top 10. The protocol needs new validator nodes to come in and keep the network running and provide the base for all our DApps to run on.
Thus improving the performance of the NEAR network protocol. We are convinced that this partnership will be a success and will show that community is part of the DNA of the protocol.
Our commitment is that on January 3rd all the Meta Pool smart contracts will be audited by Blocksec, who is a Tier 1 security firm.
These are the repositories of the contracts that will be audited:
- Staking contract — https://github.com/Narwallets/meta-pool
- $META contract — https://github.com/Narwallets/meta-pool/tree/master/meta-token
Once the audit has been completed and we have implemented the changes/improvements to our smart contracts, then the NEAR Foundation will finalize the delegation.
2022 is looking bright! Keep on staking!