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logoInjective Protocol (INJ)

The Universal Layer-2 DeFi Protocol for Cross-Chain Derivatives Trading.
  • Injective Protocol is a universal Decentralized Finance (DeFi) protocol for cross-chain derivatives trading across a plethora of financial products such as perpetual swaps, futures, and spot trading.
  • The Injective Chain is implemented as a Cosmos SDK module, built with Ethermint (EVM on Tendermint). It utilizes a Tendermint-based Proof-of-Stake to facilitate cross chain derivatives trading across Cosmos, Ethereum, and many other layer-1 protocols.
  • Injective Protocol is collision resistant and utilizes Verifiable Delay Function (VDF) to prevent front-running.
  • INJ is the native asset of Injective Protocol and is used across a diverse range of functions such as:
    • Protocol governance
    • Exchange fee value capture
    • Derivative collateralization
    • Liquidity mining
    • Staking
  • The Injective platform enable users to:
    • Take part in decentralized cross-chain derivatives trading with zero gas fees.
    • Access cross-chain yield generation for a multitude of assets.
    • Create and trade on any derivative market with only a price feed, thereby opening up more opportunities for trading on markets not found on other exchanges.

Key metrics

TickerINJ
Circulating Supply15,222,222 INJ (15.22%)
Total Token Supply100,000,000 INJ
Binance Launchpad Sale Price0.4000 USD / INJ
Binance Launchpad Allocation9,000,000 INJ (9.00%)

1. What is Injective Protocol (INJ)

Injective Protocol is a universal DeFi protocol for cross-chain derivatives trading across a variety of financial products such as perpetual swaps, futures, and spot trading.

The platform utilizes both the Ethereum and Cosmos ecosystems via peg zones in order to create a fast cross-chain trading infrastructure without gas fees expenses. Injective aims to build a network that is trustless, censorship-resistant, publicly verifiable, and front-running resistant.

1.1 Injective Value Proposition

Injective Protocol provides a vertically integrated infrastructure that allows anyone to create and trade on any derivative market. Injective Protocol currently supports perpetual swaps and Contract For Difference (CDFs), and will support other derivatives in the future.

1.2 Key Highlights

Some of Injective Protocol's key elements include:

  • Layer-2 decentralized derivatives trading: Injective is able to achieve fast trading speeds while charging zero gas fees.
  • Trade on any market: Injective allows anyone to create and trade on any derivative market using only a price feed, thereby opening up many opportunities for trading on markets not found on other exchanges.
  • Cross-chain trading and yield generation: Injective is capable of supporting a diverse array of trading and yield generation activities across distinct layer-1 blockchain networks.
  • Community driven network governance: Injective’s network will be governed by its decentralized community in which new listings or network changes are all voted on a Decentralized Autonomous Organization (DAO) structure.
  • Liquidity mining incentives: Injective’s community will be able to capture value via liquidity mining programs that have been natively built onto the network to spur continuous growth.

2. Recent news

  • October 2020: Integrated with Chainlink to settle user-created decentralized derivatives.
  • October 2020: Integrated with Polkadot to expand cross-chain derivatives trading.
  • October 2020: Introduced the Injective Token Economy.
  • September 2020: Partnered with Findora to introduce privacy-preserving derivatives.
  • September 2020: Partnered with Frontier for token swap and staking.
  • September 2020: Announced Derivative Markets Idea Competition winners
  • August 2020: Integrated with Kava to leverage on Kava's lending facility.
  • July 2020: Announced Derivatives Market Idea Competition.
  • June 2020: Announced partnership with Wootrade to improve trading liquidity.

3. Product and technical infrastructure

Injective Protocol is comprised of four principal components:

  • Injective Chain
  • Injective's smart contracts on Ethereum
  • Injective API nodes
  • Injective front-end interface

tech Figure: Injective Technical Architecture

Source: Injective Protocol Management Team.

3.1 Injective Chain

The Injective Chain is a fully decentralized sidechain relayer network which serves as a layer-2 derivatives platform, a Trade Execution Coordinator (TEC), and decentralized orderbook. Injective Chain utilizes the Tendermint consensus mechanism and the core protocol logic is implemented through Cosmos-SDK modules.

Layer-2 derivatives platform

The Injective Chain supports building generalized derivatives applications through two avenues: the Injective Futures Protocol and general smart contracts.

  • The Injective Futures Protocol is deployed on the Injective Chain as a Cosmos-SDK based application. This protocol enables traders to create, enter into, and execute decentralized perpetual swap contracts and CFDs on any arbitrary market.

  • The Injective Chain provides a two-way Ethereum peg-zone for ETH and ERC-20 tokens to be transferred to the Injective Chain as well as an EVM-compatible execution environment for DeFi applications. The peg-zone is based on Peggy and the EVM execution is based on Ethermint.

EVM execution enviroment

The Injective Chain EVM is a Geth based EVM implemented as a custom Cosmos-SDK module (akin to Ethermint).

The user and developer experience for deploying and interacting with contracts on the Injective EVM will be the same, and all of the Ethereum RPC methods will be supported in the Injective EVM.

Trade Execution Coordinator (TEC)

The Injective TEC is a decentralized coordinator implementation based on the 0x 3.0 Coordinator specification. The Injective TEC safeguards trades from front-running using Verifiable Delay Functions and enables lower-latency trading through soft-cancellations.

Decentralized orderbook

Injective's Decentralized Orderbook is a fully decentralized 0x-based orderbook enabling sidechain order relay with on-chain settlement - a decentralized implementation of the traditionally centralized off-chain order relay used by nearly all central limit order book decentralized exchanges.

Nodes of the Injective Chain host a decentralized, censorship-resistant orderbook which stores and relays trading orders.

Cross-chain structure
  • Ethereum ⮂ Injective Peg Zone: Both ETH and ERC-20 tokens can be transferred between Ethereum and the Injective Chain through the Injective Peg Zone. The process to do so follows the standard flow as defined by Peggy.

  • Ethereum → Injective Chain: The following is the underlying process involved in transferring ETH/ERC-20 tokens from Ethereum to the Injective Chain. Validators witness the locking of Ethereum/ERC-20 assets and sign a data package containing information about the lock, which is then relayed to the Injective Chain and witnessed by the EthBridge module. Once a quorum of validators has confirmed that the transaction's information is valid, the funds are released by the Oracle module and transferred to the intended recipient's address. In this way, Ethereum assets can be transferred to Cosmos-SDK based blockchains.

This process is abstracted away from the end user, who simply needs to transfer ETH/ERC-20 assets to the Injective Peg Zone (IPZ) contract.

tech Figure: Injective Technical Architecture

Source: Injective Protocol Management Team.

  • Injective Chain → Ethereum: Validators witness transactions on the Injective Chain and sign a data package containing the information. The user's ETH/ERC-20 token on the Injective Chain is then burned, resulting in unlocking the ETH/ERC-20 token on Ethereum. The data package containing the validator's signature is then relayed to the contracts deployed on the Ethereum blockchain. Once enough validators have confirmed that the transaction's information is valid, the funds are released to the intended recipient's Ethereum address.

3.2 Injective's smart contracts on Ethereum

Injective Protocol is a token-based protocol which is inextricably linked to the INJ token. As such, key components of protocol interactions and token economics are implemented through the following smart contracts:

  • Injective Coordinator Contract: Services both 0x-based orders as well as Injective's derivative transactions on Ethereum and on the Injective Chain.

  • Staking Contract: Manages the core functions for stakers in Injective Protocol including slashing, rewards, delegation and governance.

  • Injective Futures Contracts: A suite of smart contracts that enable traders to create, enter into, and execute decentralized perpetual swap contracts on any arbitrary market.

  • Injective Bridge Contracts: Encompasses a suite of smart contracts managing the two-way peg between Ethereum and the Injective Chain.

  • Injective Token Contract: ERC-20 contract for the INJ token.

3.3 Injective API nodes

Injective API nodes have two purposes: 1) providing transaction relay services and 2) serving as a data layer for the protocol.

Transaction Relay Service:

Although users can directly interact with the Injective Chain by broadcasting a compatible Tendermint transaction encoding a compatible message type, doing so would be cumbersome for most users. API nodes provide users a simple HTTP and Websocket API to interact with the protocol. The API nodes then formulate the appropriate transactions and relay them to the Injective Chain.

The Injective API supports the Injective Futures API, the 0x Standard Relayer API version 3 (SRAv3), and the 0x Standard Coordinator API.

The API also provides abstractions for protocol actions including staking, voting and governance. The specification for this API can be found at api.injective.dev.

Data layer

Injective API nodes also serve as a data layer for external clients. Injective provides a data and analytics API which is out-of-the-box compatible with Injective's frontend interface. Although Injective provides the API server as an in-process service based on BadgerDB communicating over Google Remote Call Procedure (gRPC) with the Injective Chain node, developers can provide their own implementations for their custom needs (e.g. using a relational database for indexed queries).

3.4 Injective front-end interface

Injective Protocol is a fully decentralized protocol which allows for individuals to access the protocol in a permissionless manner. Injective provides a user-friendly frontend interface which individuals or companies can run locally or host on a web-server to interface with the protocol. This interface is also deployed on the InterPlanetary File System (IPFS).

4. Token sales and economics

4.1 Token allocation

Token NameINJ
Binance Launchpad Sale9.00% of the total token supply
Seed Sale6.00% of the total token supply
Private Sale16.67% of the total token supply
Team20.00% of the total token supply
Advisors2.00% of the total token supply
Ecosystem Development36.33% of the total token supply
Community Growth10.00% of the total token supply

4.2 Token sales data

Token NameINJ
Seed Sale Allocation6,000,000 INJ
Seed Sale Token Price0.0833 USD / INJ
Seed Sale Amount Raised500,000 USD
Private Sale Allocation16,666,667 INJ
Private Sale Token Price0.1800 USD / INJ
Private Sale Amount Raised3,000,000 USD
Launchpad Sale Allocation9,000,000 INJ
Launchpad Sale Token Price0.4000 USD / INJ
Launchpad Sale Amount to be Raised3,600,000 USD
Launchpad Sale DateOct 19th 2020

4.3 Token governance and use of funds

All funds in previous fund raises were raised in stablecoins and fiat currencies. The stablecoins are either self-custodied and stored in multisig wallets, requiring at least 2 out of 3 signatures from the management team or are stored with a qualified custodian.

Funds will be utilized according to the allocations below:

  • 50.00% Protocol Development
  • 25.00% Business Development and Marketing
  • 15.00% Operations
  • 10.00% Legal and Accounting
INJ token supply distribution (%)
INJ token release schedule

4.4 INJ token overview and use-cases

The use cases intended for INJ include but are not limited to: protocol governance, exchange fee value capture, derivative collateralization, liquidity mining, and staking. Further details regarding each of these use cases can be found below.

  • Protocol Governance: The INJ token can be used to govern various components of Injective's sidechain including the futures protocol, exchange parameters and protocol upgrades via a DAO structure.
  • Exchange Fee Value Capture: After the relayer reward distribution, the exchange fee will undergo an on-chain buy-back-and-burn event to accrue value for INJ.
  • Collateral Backing for Derivatives: INJ will be utilized as an alternative to stablecoins as margin and collateral for Injective's derivatives markets. In some futures markets, INJ can also be used for collateral backing or insurance pool staking where stakers can earn interest on their locked tokens.
  • Exchange Participation Incentives: The foundation plans to incorporate a liquidity mining scheme and distribute a fixed number of INJ tokens daily weighted by the liquidity each network participant provides.
  • Tendermint-based Proof-of-Stake (PoS) Security: To ensure the security of Injective's sidechain, Injective will incentivize nodes to stake INJ and participate in the sidechain's network consensus with block rewards.

5. Project team

Eric Chen
CEO & Co-founder
Former Researcher at Innovating Capital, Former Product Manager at Splash, Bachelor's Degree from NYU Stern School of Business.
Albert Chon
CTO & Co-founder
Former Software Development Engineer at Amazon, Former Consultant at Open Zeppelin, Former Researcher at Stanford Parallel Distributed Processing Lab, Master of Science at Stanford University.
Max Kupriianov
Senior Backend Engineer
Markus Waas
Core Engineer
Bojan Angjelkoski
Core Engineer
Alexandros Athanasopulos
Core Engineer
Michael Siedlecki
Core Engineer
Xinran Xu
Business Development
Boris Shevchenko
Technical Product Manager

6. Roadmap, updates, and business development

6.1 Original roadmap and achievements

Planned DateMilestoneActual DateTimingComments
2018: Q3Idea conception, and research of whitepaper2018: Q3On TimeWhitepaper
2018: Q4Acceptance into Binance Labs incubation program2018: Q4On TimeAnnouncement
2019: Q2Release of front-running resistant orderbook DEX2019: Q1EarlyN/A
2019: Q2Release of Cosmos-based VDF consensus demo2019: Q1EarlyN/A
2019: Q3Release of private testnet V12019: Q2EarlyN/A
2019: Q3Release of frontend interface private beta2019: Q3On TimeN/A
2019: Q4Private release of Injective Core, Perpetuals and CFDs2019: Q4On TimeGithub
2020: Q2Integration and creation of futures markets2020: Q1EarlyN/A
2020: Q2Launch of layer-2 functionalities2020: Q2On TimeN/A
2020: Q3Release of private testnet V22020: Q3On TimeN/A
2020: Q4Release of SDKs and documentation2020: Q3EarlyDocumentation
2020: Q4Launch of private testnet V3 with cross-chain trading2020: Q3EarlyN/A

6.2 Updated roadmap

2020 Q4

  • Release of public testnet V1.
  • Launch of Incentivized Testnet Trading Competition.
  • Launch of ERC-20 token.

2021 Q1

  • Release of public testnet V2.
  • Release of Incentivized Staking Competition and Ethereum bridge.

2021 Q2

  • Launch of mainnet V1.
  • Implemention of bridges to multiple blockchain networks.
  • Adding of liquidity mining (yield farming) and staking incentives.
  • Swapping of token, from ERC-20 to native chain.

2021 Q3

  • Launch of 10+ perpetual swaps and expiry futures.
  • Launch of cross-chain yield generation.

2021 Q4

  • Launch of DAO governance for community governed listings and market creation.
  • Launch of staking pools on insurance funds.

2022 Q1

  • Launch of institutional exchange interface.
  • Launch of crypto-backed traditional financial derivatives.

6.3 Commercial partnerships and business development progress

  • Polkadot: Polkadot facilitates cross-chain communication and interoperability by connecting multiple blockchains into one unified network. This integration will enable Injective to expand its decentralized cross-chain derivatives trading functionalities.
  • Findora: Findora is a zero-knowledge privacy-preserving public blockchain. Through this partnership, Injective Protocol will provide a decentralized and secure platform for users to store their data and information.
  • Frontier: Frontier is a chain-agnostic DeFi aggregation layer for protocol tracking and management. The partnership will allow Frontier to bring its DeFi solution to Injective’s derivatives exchange, bringing in new features and functionality for users of both Frontier and Injective.
  • Elrond: Elrond is a highly scalable, fast and secure blockchain platform for distributed apps, enterprise use cases and the new internet economy. Injective's partnership will open up markets for Elrond’s tech and tokens while also giving Injective’s users access to Elrond's digital currency, eGold.
  • Kava: Kava is a multi-chain DeFi lending platform for digital assets. The partnership will help to integrate Kava’s lending facility with Injective's cross-chain capabilities. Allowing users of Injective DEX to trade new asset types and interact with new DeFi networks.
  • Maskbook: Maskbook is an open-source browser extension that enables all Internet users to create encrypted posts on social networks. The collaboration with Maskbook includes data collaboration and exploration of encryption schemes.
  • Wootrade: Wootrade is a digital asset liquidity pool, that seeks to provide deeper liquidity for institutional clients by partnering with top exchanges, funds and quant teams. Injective Protocol's strategic cooperation with Wootrade, includes cooperation in the implementation of liquidity management, the design of crypto asset derivative products, and international corporate brand development.

7. Injective's activity and community overview

Injective’s community is distributed globally with various hubs located in the United States, China, South Korea, Europe and Vietnam.

Injective’s community comprises mainly of the following groups:

  • Traders: This includes day traders, institutional traders and algorithmic traders that are seeking to leverage the Injective DEX for derivative market creation and trading.
  • Market Makers and DeFi Enthusiasts: The Injective platform has built a liquidity mining program which can fairly compensate users for providing liquidity on the Injective platform.
  • Market Creators and Developers: As an open and permissionless platform, Injective encourages developers to create unique derivatives markets. Market creators and developers are compensated for their contributions to the network through a percentage of the trading fees and by community grants.

7.1 Social activity

Current community growth strategies of Injective Protocol:
  • Empowering community participants to be Injective ambassadors to grow a robust and sustainable trader and developer ecosystem.
  • Increasing peg zones for cross-chain capabilities that interconnect multiple layer-1 ecosystems.
  • Holding an incentivized testnet and trading competition for community to participate and provide valuable insights while being compensated for their efforts.
Future community growth strategies of Injective Protocol:
  • Growing its trader and market maker community by incentivizing participation in the exchange ecosystem via various liquidity mining programs.
  • Introducing on-chain referral system for network participants to capture a high percentage of the exchange fees that they bring to the ecosystem.
Community and social channels (data as of November 13th 2020)

Reddit | 1.7K Members
Twitter | 28.6K Followers
Telegram (English) | 12.9K Members
Blog

7.2 Development activity

8. Appendix

8.1 Technical documentation and socials

8.2 Written reviews

8.3 Video reviews and interviews

8.4 Media mentions