The decentralized finance (DeFi) ecosystem has grown exponentially
during the past few years. Beginning with the launch of Ethereum
(ETH) in mid-2015, application developers across the globe began to
write smart contracts to support a wide range of decentralized
applications (dApps). A few years later, other platforms such as
EOS and TRON launched their mainnets during mid-2018. Before their
launch, the historic bull market of 2017 brought a lot of attention
to the space, which was mostly a niche market. At that time, the
market saw Bitcoin surge from around $1,000 in January to nearly
$20,000 by December 2017 and the Ethereum (ETH) price skyrocketed
from just $10 to briefly over $1,400. Although there was a very
strong correction afterwards, many more individuals and
organizations became aware of the potential of crypto. As more
users attempted to transact across blockchain networks, it became
clear that distributed ledger technology (DLT) networks were just
not able to settle transactions as quickly as high-performing
networks like Visa (NYSE: V) or Mastercard (NYSE: MA). Although
blockchain platforms are fundamentally different from more
traditional payment processing networks, both need to offer a
seamless user experience. Visa Executive Identifies Requirement for
Digital Currency Interoperability That’s why the crypto and
blockchain space is witnessing many new projects emerge that can
address scalability requirements. In addition to being able to
handle a large number of transactions, blockchain networks also
need to be interoperable with each other. This means that if a user
is transacting with a set of tokens on one DLT network, then they
should also be able to engage in asset transfers with other DLT
platforms in a seamless manner. Catherine Gu, Global CBDC (Central
Bank Digital Currency) Product Lead, Visa, recently noted that as
the number of virtual currency networks continues to rise — each
with “unique design characteristics” — the likelihood that
individual consumers, businesses, and merchants are performing
transactions on a single network and utilizing the same type of
money (or digital tokens) decreases. Gu added that the team at
payments giant Visa believes that for digital currencies and token
economies to be successful, they must provide an excellent consumer
experience as well as “widespread merchant acceptance.” This means
that we need to have the ability to make and receive payments,
“regardless of currency, channel, or form factor.” That’s why Visa
decided to develop their own universal payment channel. While Visa
may be focused mainly on payments, this clearly shows that
interoperability between different networks, including blockchains,
will be essential. Creating Decentralized Standard for Cross-Chain
Interoperability, Liquidity Transfers That’s why projects such as
deBridge have secured millions of dollars in funding, so that they
can work towards establishing a decentralized standard for
cross-chain interoperability. The developers of deBrige aim to
enhance cross-chain functionality by allowing different DLT
networks to seamlessly exchange assets and information between each
other. The deBridge development team aims to provide the critical
digital infrastructure that would allow large blockchains such as
Binance Smart Chain (BSC) and Ethereum (ETH) to interact with each
other. While DeFi may be a key part of the digital economy of the
future, it will require the support of cross-chain interoperability
protocols to achieve its goal of mainstream adoption. deBridge’s
$5.5 million investment round, which was finalized in early
September 2021, included participation from ParaFi, Animoca Brands,
Huobi Ventures, Lemniscap, Crypto.com Capital, Fundamental Labs,
bitScale, and many other investors. Notably, deBridge started
during the Chainlink Spring 2021 Hackathon event, where the team
received the grand prize while competing against 140 high-potential
projects. The modern consumer demands more accessible and diverse
financial services. These requirements have made it critical to
establish the appropriate infrastructure to enable interoperability
between different blockchains and financial ecosystems.

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