After a long wait, Axo, one of Cardano’s most anticipated DeFi protocols, has gone live on the Cardano mainnet—and it hasn’t disappointed users, with its re-DeFi-ning programmability for DeFi.
Here we’ll dive into what Axo is, what it offers users, how it works, and discuss the $AXO token and airdrop.
Axo (formerly Maladex) is an advanced trading platform that utilizes, to the fullest extent, the determinism offered by Cardano’s eUTxO model; providing users with a DeFi protocol that surpasses anything yet seen on Cardano in terms of quality and variety of features, making DeFi activity on Cardano programmable and more efficient.
The list of Axo's features is long, and they are all designed to give traders the wealth of tools they need to execute their preferred strategy. The list below highlights some of the platform’s features:
• Unlimited order types (25 presets and the ability to build your own)
• Prebuilt and customizable market making and trading strategies
• Customizable market making and trading strategies (allowing for the management of impermanent loss)
• Visualizer for no-code strategy building (and the ability to backtest strategies)
• User created index funds that auto-rebalance
• Futures contracts (user-created available)
• Options (user-created available)
With all these features, and more, Axo doesn’t just expand the opportunities in DeFi but fundamentally changes the way users interact with and create markets on Cardano.
To provide all these features to users Axo combines 3 novel features:
Programmable Swaps: What makes all of Axo’s features possible. Each trade on Axo creates its own smart contracts (in a formal verified language built specifically for finance) described as microprograms that allow "for a degree of control over one's trading intent that hasn't previously been possible."
These allow users to define how, when, and with whom they trade their assets. Not only that, but programmable swaps actively combat front-running and other infrastructural advantages used to undermine traders in DEXes across the crypto ecosystem.
Signal Engine: Collecting and interpreting data, from on- and off-chain sources, the Signal Engine informs all the programmable swaps deployed on-chain. All the data produced by the Signal Engine is stored for backtesting newly designed trading strategies.
Order Matching Engine (OME): All swaps are matched by decentralized OMEs, which are informed by real-time data from the Signal Engine. These generate mathematical proofs to ensure swaps are executed under the fairest and most optimal conditions.
The $AXO token has use cases in the Axo ecosystem, including:
• Governance voting power in the Axo DAO
• Paying for features like backtesting and oracles for programmable swaps
• Accessing special features and tools
Each transaction on Axo generates a small amount, ~0.1%, of trading fees. These are used to buyback Axo which is added to the DAO controlled treasury.
The total supply of 42m $AXO tokens is expected to be in circulation by the end of the 4th year of operation.
Early adopters of the platform, specifically, those who contributed to the Maladex ISPO, were entitled to their earned airdrop of $AXO tokens. In a surprise turn of events, Axo also distributed all ADA rewards earned through this ISPO event to delegates, to remain regulatory compliant—signaling that they have bigger ideas that just disrupting the status quo of Cardano DeFi.
This airdrop of $AXO tokens amounted to 5% of the total supply (2.1m $AXO tokens) and was claimable through the Axo vault—for those who haven’t yet, here are the details for how to claim their airdrop tokens (note that claiming requires KYC).
With the launch of protocols like Axo and Fluid Tokens on Cardano’s mainnet we are seeing the maturation of Cardano’s DeFi landscape, providing more utility to the Cardano community while also appealing to more than just token traders and community members.
This might just be the start of something bigger.