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Fantom Ecosystem - An ideal destination for DeFi users

Let's take a look at Fantom Ecosystem overview and DeFi on the Fantom blockchain to find out investment opportunities on this ecosystem.
Amber avatar
quangphan
14 min read
Published Sep 20 2021
Updated Apr 23 2024
fantom ecosystem

It is not surprising to say that Fantom has recently emerged as a phenomenon to compete for a top-ranked position. Although the ecosystem has been quite “silent” for the first 8 months of 2021, Fantom needed only 3 months to show the crypto world a whole different face.

In this article, I will provide you with every information you need to know about the Fantom ecosystem, including:

Fantom overview, the FTM coin, and its current situation.
The DeFi ecosystem on the Fantom blockchain with deep analysis.
Predictions and investment opportunities on Fantom.

Pay close attention to what is coming!

Fantom Overview

What is Fantom?

Fantom is a fast, cheap, scalable, decentralized, and secure blockchain platform. Not only does Fantom support DeFi development, but it also develops for institutional and governmental demands, such as Financial Markets, Institutional Finance, CBDC (Central Bank Digital Currency), Real Estates, Smart Healthcare,...

fantom global cbdc
Countries that have adopted Fantom. Source: Fantomians

To implement noteworthy features such as Speed, Security, Scalability, and Compatibility with EVM, Fantom adopts the use of Lachesis - an innovative aBFT consensus mechanism. The primary properties of this algorithm are:

Asynchronous: Users can freely process commands whenever, at will.
Leaderless: Noone is single-handedly taking control of the system.
Byzantine Fault-Tolerant: Functional even with 1/3 nodes being faulty or malicious.
Final: Transactions are confirmed within only 1-2 seconds, which can be considered as instantly.
consensus protocols comparision
Comparing Lachesis aBFT to other consensus protocols.

Fantom Coin (FTM) Key Metrics

Name: Fantom.
Ticker: FTM.
Token standard: ERC-20.
Token type: Utility, governance.
Max supply: 3,175,000,000 FTM.
Circulating Supply: 2,541,152,731 FTM.
Contract address: 0x4e15361fd6b4bb609fa63c81a2be19d873717870.
Market Cap: $3,296,847,712.
FDV (Fully Diluted Valuation): $4,119,190,223.

Fantom Blockchain statistics

Fantom Opera Chain: Dec 27, 2019.
TPS: Up to 10,000 TPS.
Epoch time: 1-10 secs.
Staking Balance: 1,806,075,254.67 FTM.
Average Transaction Fee: ≈ $0.0001.
Total Validators: 82.
Unique Addresses: 2,521,625.
blockchain platforms comparision
Top-tier blockchain platform comparison. Source: Coin98 Analytics

Fantom current situation

On December 27, 2019, the Fantom Opera Mainnet was released.

Afterwards, the blockchain was gradually developed until the advent of “Fantom DeFi” in Q3 2020. This was the time when the infrastructure and foundational dApps were built. In Q2 2021, some Fantom native protocols like SpookySwap and SpiritSwap were released, creating the first wave of Fantom.

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Up to this point, the Fantom ecosystem is pretty well prepared with most DeFi Legos being ready. DeFi on Fantom is being pushed and a lot of exciting things are expected to come up next.

Highlights in Fantom Ecosystem

Fantom Ecosystem Spotlight

On September 6, 2021, Fantom introduced a separate category in its blog: Fantom Ecosystem Spotlight - a program created to enable various Fantom projects to interact directly with the Fantom Foundation, thus forming a close bond between the 3 participants: the Fantom Foundation, the project itself, and its community.

Most recently, Fantom Ecosystem Spotlight featured Revenant - one of the "OG" projects on Fantom. As you can see, projects being on the Ecosystem Spotlight are mostly the core legos of the ecosystem: Grim Finance, Scream, SpookySwap, Geist Finance, SpiritSwap,..

Imagine the next protocols being featured. Will you see them as trustworthy as any other protocol here? If the answer is “yes”, then Fantom Ecosystem Spotlight has shown its efficiency. You can read the whole article right here.

spirit ecosystem spotlight
SpiritSwap is featured in Fantom Ecosystem Spotlight. Source: Fantomians

Fantom Developer Conference

One of the biggest events on Fantom is here. Fantom DC takes place in Abu Dhabi from 25-29 October 2021, where a massive number of founders, developers, influencers,... will gather to talk about the future and upcoming plans for Fantom.

Some of the notable names can be mentioned as CZ (Binance CEO), Andre Cronje (DeFi Architect and Creator), Roger Ver (Bitcoin.com Founder), Harry Yeh (Quantum Fintech group), Micheal Kong (Fantom Foundation CEO),... and many many more.

fantom developer conference
Fantom Developer Conference expert speakers. Source: Fantomians

So how did this event affect Fantom? First of all, it will be the first step to put Fantom’s name on the map. The conference is supposed to be the place where uniform beliefs, visions, and people gather and spread their words to the crypto community through revolutionary workshops and presentations. People will understand more about Fantom, thus knowing and believing in its process in a more certain way.

Second, as speeches and presentations were conducted, a lot of information, or should I say, “alpha leaks”, will be given out as well. One of the biggest announcements so far has been Binance supporting Fantom tokens through Binance Cloud, which means getting access to the Fantom ecosystem will be much easier.

The Fantom Developer Conference has created a gigantic hype for the whole Fantom ecosystem. This has been reflected in the price of $FTM: Right before the event takes place, the FTM price has already skyrocketed to $3.46 (+80%), marking a new ATH.

ftm price
FTM price surge before Fantom DC took place.

Fantom Incentive Program

fantom incentive program
Fantom announced its incentive program.

Fantom Foundation has recently announced its 370M FTM Incentive Program, which is now worth more than $1B. This amount of money will be used to boost the development of DeFi on Fantom.

Up to this point, various blockchain ecosystems have rolled out their incentive programs. However, with FTM reaching an ATH of $3.44, the value of this program has become the top 1, even eclipsing that of Binance Smart Chain, which is backed by CZ and Binance.

Fantom Ecosystem Analysis

Here is an overview of the Fantom Ecosystem. Early this year, Fantom had less than 50 projects operating. Heading to the end of the year, now Fantom has over 200 projects, revealing how rapidly the ecosystem grows, not only in quantity but also in quality.

Infrastructure

From the beginning, Fantom has spent a really long time preparing for its infrastructure. Infrastructure is an incredibly crucial part of a DeFi ecosystem, whereas no dApp can thrive successfully without the support of infrastructure applications.

A number of infrastructure integrations on Fantom can be listed as:

Oracle: Chainlink, Band Protocol, Modefi,...
API: The Graph, Covalent, Ankr, API3, Idexo,...
Payment: Travala, CryptoFills, Voyager,...
Analytics: Nansen, DexTools, FTMscan,...

As we can see, numerous famous names like Chainlink, Band Protocol, The Graph, Nansen,... have supported Fantom. This does not only help develop the whole ecosystem in general, but also show that the Fantom ecosystem is now looking “appealing” enough for big names to pay attention to.

fantom nansen
Nansen arrived on Fantom. Source: Fantomians

Wallet

fantom wallet
Wallets that support the Fantom Blockchain. Source: Fantomians

Fantom has been supported by a wide range of wallets, some of which are:

Coin98 Wallet: Coin98 Wallet supports all coins/tokens on more than 25 blockchain platforms, developed on 4 platforms: the Mobile app (Android and iOS), the Web app, and the Extension.
Coinbase: The wallet of Coinbase - one of the largest crypto exchanges.
Ledger: One of the world’s best hardware wallets.

At the same time, Fantom token (FTM) has been listed on 40+ crypto exchanges, such as Binance, FTX, Kucoin, Huobi, Poloniex,... and most recently, Crypto.com. However, lots of Fantomians are expecting this asset to be listed on Coinbase, as its wallet has already supported Fantom. In this market wave, I believe this news will be announced soon enough.

Bridge

The bridge sector is the next thing that we need to look at when evaluating an ecosystem. To be “open” to the “outer world”, any DeFi ecosystem needs a cross-chain bridge. The development of this segment indicates how prepared the ecosystem is for assets to be transferred from other chains, hence inheriting more cash flow into the ecosystem.

On Fantom, over 15 cross-chain bridges have been released, connecting Fantom to Ethereum, Binance Smart Chain, Polygon, Polkadot, Cosmos,... From my perspective, this is more than enough. The most active bridge of all is Multichain (Anyswap rebranded)with more than $4.26B TVL on Fantom - the highest number compared to other protocols.

Stablecoin

Before any DeFi activity can happen, we need Stablecoins. On Fantom, Stablecoins used to be really lacking, as only a small amount of USDC was minted while USDT was wrapped and bridged. There were some native algorithmic Stablecoins, but they were evidently ineffective.

Read more about the importance of Stablecoins here: What is Stablecoin?

stake fusd
FUSD - a native algorithmic Stablecoin, cannot keep its peg.

However, this is no longer the case. Some notable Stablecoins have arrived on Fantom, namely MIM (Abradacabra Money Stablecoin, one of the DeFi 2.0 leading projects), TUSD (True USD, one of the top centralized Stablecoins), indicating that Fantom has realized its existing obstacles and has been trying to tackle the problem.

fantom anyswap tusd
TUSD came to Fantom. Source: Fantomians

The Stablecoin index is one of the most important indicators to track Fantom. In the past, when the number of Stablecoins on Fantom rose remarkably through Multichain (a bridge supporting mainly Fantom), the Fantom ecosystem also witnessed tremendous growth.

At this moment, this situation is being repeated. Through Multichain's dashboard, it can be clearly seen that Stablecoins on Fantom have increased not only in diversity but also in quantity. This has indicated a continuingly massive growth for Fantom.

AMM

AMM is the next sector that we need to investigate. AMMs create a liquidity pool and attract liquidity into it for the whole ecosystem. As DeFi cannot operate where there is no liquidity, AMM is an indispensable part of a DeFi ecosystem. So how does this sector on Fantom look like?

As I mentioned before, 2 core native AMMs on Fantom - SpookySwap and SpiritSwap, who both received the Fantom Foundation Grant, have been constantly growing in both prices and TVL.

Back to about 9 months ago when both of them were released, most of the TVL within the Fantom ecosystem stayed in Curve Finance - a multichain AMM specialized for Stablecoins. Why is this not a good point?

fantom tvl june
FTM price and TVL on Fantom in the past. Source: Fantomians

Back then, Fantom was a newborn ecosystem that had just barely built its first DeFi Lego - AMM. The appearance of Curve was necessary to bootstrap the ecosystem’s initial liquidity, but as liquidity of the whole ecosystem came mostly from Ethereum (where Curve was originally deployed), the cash flow inside Fantom was not sustainable and the TVL couldn’t be relative to the growth of the ecosystem.

The result was crystal clear: After a short “ecosystem discovery”, the cash flow in Curve was withdrawn out of Fantom extremely quickly as the Fantom ecosystem didn’t have enough DeFi Legos for users to stay.

Thus, we can conclude that the growth of Curve on Fantom at that moment was actually not a good thing, as it absorbed all the liquidity from SpookySwap and SpiritSwap, at the same time was not sustainable.

Now that the TVL in the ecosystem transferred mostly to SpookySwap and SpiritSwap, we can see how fast Fantom is being developed. Nevertheless, recently on October 26th, we can see a really quick TVL surge in Curve from $183M to more than $600M, while those in native AMMs decreased. But this time, it is a good sign.

curve tvl
Recent tremendous TVL growth in Curve on Fantom.

The difference this time is that the Fantom ecosystem now has enough DeFi Legos to maintain and attract users. The increase in Curve’s TVL this time in fact happened at the same time with a small market correction.

This case shows that investors now don’t want to leave the Fantom ecosystem like before. Instead, they chose to stay in the ecosystem by swapping their assets to Stablecoins (to avoid loss from the market correction) and deposited them into Curve to earn extra yields while waiting for the right moment to continue to “ape in” Fantom.

Not only does this situation show the development of the Fantom ecosystem, it also evidently demonstrates users’ expectations of Fantom continuing its bull run.

Yield Aggregators

Yield Aggregator is the next most developed sector on Fantom, so let’s take a look at the comparison of different available Yield Optimizers.

yield aggregator comparison
Comparison between different yield aggregators. Source: Fantomians

Although there are a lot more products that cannot be included in this picture, it can show us a clear overview. The number one Yield Aggregator on Fantom in terms of TVL is currently Beefy Finance, although the protocol is multichain and only has 104 Farm Vaults.

The two native Yield Aggregators, Grim Finance and Reaper Farm, have also shown impressive growth, especially Grim Finance. Grim Finance has now provided users with 472 Farm Vaults, even though its TVL is still pretty low at $100M.

A few months ago, when the TVL in Reaper Farm was about $70M, that in Grim Finance was only $10M. By being constantly active with other projects to support an incredible number of Farm Vaults, Grim Finance has ultimately surpassed Reaper Farm. Unfortunately, Grim Finance was recently exploited, resulting in Grim Finance staying as the number 1 native Yield Aggregator.

Nevertheless, Reaper Farm hasn’t released its token yet. In the future, we can expect that to be the game-changer for Reaper Farm, putting more use cases and incentives to the protocol.

Lending

Lending is the next Lego piece that Fantom needs to finish to receive more cash flow into the ecosystem. Before, Scream was the only native protocol in this sector on Fantom, while Cream - a multichain lending protocol, was the first to exist on the ecosystem.

However, both of them got stuck at less than $100M TVL. This number was too small for an ecosystem to grow further. Then, Geist Finance appeared like the last puzzle that Fantom needed.

After its launch 2 days, the protocol reached $10B Total Market Size. Compared to those 2 lending protocols remaining the number at less than $100M, $10B was too gigantic. There is no doubt that Geist Finance has taken over the lending niche on Fantom ever since then.

With the advent of Geist Finance, the Fantom ecosystem has become much more solid, and has had enough DeFi pieces to prepare for the next big things, which explained the above situation of Curve’s recent TVL increase.

Launchpad

Launchpad is a crucial part especially to new DeFi ecosystems as it will help the ecosystem grow by incubating new projects frequently.

Although Fantom has a major number of Launchpads (Fantom Oasis, Presale Money, FTMpad, FantomStarter,...) none of them has shown substantial growth or notable products besides FantomStarter.

Up to this moment, FantomStarter has released IDOs for 15 projects in total. It is currently the most and also the only active launchpad on Fantom.

For Fantom to grow more dramatically, especially in a bull market, its launchpad landscape needs to be improved.

NFT

In the NFT sector, Artion used to be the most outstanding project. Artion is an NFT marketplace developed directly by Andre Cronje (a Fantom Foundation member as well as a well-known developer in the crypto space), at the same time supported by the Fantom Foundation.

Artion provides users with various unique features as follows:

Super fast transaction speed.
Near 0 transaction fees.
Costs only 1 FTM to mint NFT.
Use ChainLink price feeds.
0 Commission.
artion fantom nft
The overview of Artion.

Even though Artion is supported directly by Fantom Foundation, it is in fact not the NFT Marketplace with the highest performance. The winner among NFT Marketplaces is actually PaintSwap. PaintSwap has received the most NFT volume (10,567,962 $FTM), at the same time has possessed the largest number of NFT collections, leading to a supportive Fantom community behind the product.

Besides Artion and PaintSwap, some other NFT Marketplaces could be seen as Ovre, X,... But they had little to no uniqueness. At the same time, all of them are still developing their products, so they need to implement some innovative features if they want to compete with PaintSwap.

The reason why I have only mentioned NFT Marketplaces is that most NFTs on Fantom are currently in form of Collectibles. Only a few NFT games have been announced to be released, but still, those are only plans. Therefore, following the movement of NFT Marketplaces is our best decision at the moment.

GameFi is obviously a massive and potential market to look over. Unfortunately, this landscape on Fantom has not yet thrived, although some movements have been realized. The most noteworthy game project on Fantom at the moment is TankWars Zone, which was invested by Fantom Foundation.

DeFi 2.0

DeFi 2.0 is a new and fresh niche in the crypto market. Capital and liquidity are two most important factor in any market, let alone crypto or DeFi. As the original DeFi was having problems with leveraging them, DeFi 2.0 was born to improve Capital Efficiency via methods like Bonding, Protocol-owned Liquidity, or Liquidity Concentration.

On Fantom, some notable projects in this niche can be seen as:

Tomb Finance: Tomb Finance is the backbone of TOMB - an FTM-pegged token. By creating a pegged token through seigniorage, Tomb Finance enables farming TOMB-FTM at much higher yields than simply staking FTM, considering the peg can be maintained.
Robo-Vault: Robo Vault is a Yield Optimizer that increases farming yields by applying various strategies, ranging from farming, staking, and lending or borrowing across different protocols.
Liquid Driver: Liquid Driver is a LAAS (Liquidity as a Service) project, where it helps direct users' liquidity to earn the best yields.

Predictions about the Fantom Ecosystem

If you have read this whole article, I hope that you have received deep insights on Fantom in multiple aspects. Based on the analysis, I have a number of predictions about the Fantom Ecosystem:

Fantom has prepared enough basic DeFi Legos to receive more cash flow.
More movements towards DeFi 2.0/GameFi is being shown in the network.
However, the current market sentiment is not favourable.

The Fantom ecosystem is highly likely to continue its bull run, but not at the moment.

If this is true, what can we expect from Fantom? Some of my beliefs are:

GameFi to be developed better. NFT is creating a huge market trend, but Fantom has only adopted NFT Collectibles. This sector is still amazingly potential, and Fantom can take this chance to grow its ecosystem even more.
DeFi 2.0 to improve on Fantom. If you have read about DeFi 2.0, you will understand that DeFi 2.0 is changing the way the crypto market works. Capital Efficiency is a considerable niche to work on, and some noteworthy projects include: Tomb Finance, RoboVault, LiquidDriver,...
Felix to be released. Felix is a specialized CEX made for Fantom, and is announced to be released within Q2 2022. If Fantom is supported by an original CEX by Felix, the inflow and outflow of cash inside the ecosystem will become even more fluid.

Investment opportunities with the Fantom Ecosystem

Invest in Fantom tokens

As Fantom has been corrected together with the market recently, many native tokens have decreased in price. You can take this chance to "buy the dip" on Fantom tokens.

Various protocols with low-mid Market Cap can be seen as:

AMM: SpookySwap, SpiritSwap, Beethoven-X, Morpheus Swap,...
Lending: Scream, Geist Finance,...
Yield Aggregators: Grim Finance, Skull Finance,...

Disclaimer: Research carefully before investing. This is Not Financial Advice.

Skin in the game

earning in fantom ecosystem
How you can earn in Fantom. Source: Fantomians

If you are new to the Fantom ecosystem, you can follow this guide to “skin in the game” on Fantom. Farming comes along with Impermanent Loss and Lending comes with liquidation risks, so make sure you know what you’re doing before investing in your money.

Participate in NFT Marketplaces

artion fantom marketplace
Artworks being sold on Artion.

If you are an artist with cool arts, you cannot miss this opportunity. With NFT being the current market trend, you can make significant profits by selling artworks.

By using Artion on Fantom, you only need 1 FTM (~$2.6 at the moment) to mint an NFT, and you don’t have to pay any commission if your artworks are sold successfully, thanks to the feature Artion provides.

Conclusion

To conclude, here are some main points:

Fantom is a fast, cheap, scalable, decentralized, and secure blockchain platform that serves both DeFi, institutional and governmental demands.
The Fantom ecosystem is now well prepared enough to receive more cash flow and investments.
Earning on Fantom now stops only at Borrowing and Yield Farming. Derivatives, NFT, GameFi still need to be developed.
Fantom is still expected to continue another market wave, with the expectation of DeFi 2.0 or GameFi possibly emerging.

You’ve been through an article about the Fantom ecosystem. I hope it has helped you in gaining more valuable insights into this blockchain ecosystem and understanding its potential.