• EigenLayer is a protocol that allows Ethereum validators and stakers to “re-stake” their assets onto other emerging networks.
• The project has announced $50 million in a Series A funding round, led by Blockchain Capital and Coinbase Ventures.
• It aims to address issues with validator economic incentives, allowing them to earn fees on additional services.
EigenLayer Protocol Launches on Testnet
The EigenLayer protocol, which allows Ethereum validators and stakers to “re-stake” their assets onto other emerging networks, has just launched on testnet. The mainnet launch of the protocol is not expected until Q3, however, and testing will be phased in three stages to onboard various participants into the ecosystem. The first stage is using Ethereum’s Goerli testing network.
Backers & Funding Round
The project has some serious backing and announced $50 million in a Series A funding round in late March led by crypto venture firm Blockchain Capital, along with Coinbase Ventures, Polychain Capital, Electric Capital and Finality Capital Partner.
Aim of the Protocol
EigenLayer aims to become a decentralized marketplace for Ethereum node operators and validators to earn fees on additional services. It allows them to restake assets they received in exchange for staking Ether on platforms such as Lido (stETH) and RocketPool (rETH). The assets can be reused to validate and secure other networks, such as sidechains or non-EVM blockchains. According to the white paper, EigenLayer also has plans to enable restaking for ETH withdrawn from the Beacon Chain following the Shapella upgrade.
Incentives & Yields
The protocol aims to address issues with validator economic incentives. EigenLayer founder Sreeram Kannan said that facilitating the moving and re-staking of ETH onto other networks would incentivize validators and stakers with additional yields and allow smaller networks to grow securely.
Joseph Lubin’s Statement
In late March, Ethereum co-founder Joseph Lubin said that “[t]he Eigen Labs team is at the forefront of some of the most exciting work happening in Ethereum.”