The venerable yield farming project that popularized food coins, Yam Finance (YAM), is finally back after a few weeks of hiatus. But before we get into that, some context for those who don’t know.
Yam is a project that originally launched around the start of August with the premise of fairly distributing coins to Ethereum users through what is known as a “stakedrop.” The idea was to allow users to deposit popular ERC-20 crypto-assets — a list that included Compound, Aave’s LEND, and Synthetix Network Token — in exchange for a new coin called YAM.
YAM had no value, but the market thought otherwise: they piled dozens of millions, then hundreds of millions of DeFi coins at the staking contracts, to the point where the coins were actually surging 10-30 percent on the open market. Then, YAM itself reached market capitalization in the dozens of millions near instantly.
The issue is, there was a bug in the protocol that resulted in a loss of funds, purportedly $500,000-750,000 worth of crypto assets. This resulted in a scramble and shutdown of the protocol that left many with a bad taste in their mouth.
There were some, though, that wanted YAM to continue, though, resulting in a movement to migrate the project to an audited iteration, which would remove the issues found in the first iteration.
And so they did. They audited, developed, and iterated. And here we are today with the recent launch of YamV3.
OG Ethereum yield farming coin Yam is back
Yam Finance and YAM is back.
The project rolled out the contracts for this new version, which is technically the third iteration of Yam due to the interim iteration to mitigate the risk of hacks or bugs, on Sep. 18.
This new version, which has been audited, will work similar to the old version: YAM can be mined, this time through providing liquidity to the YAM-yUSD pool. The coins will then rebase towards one yUSD every 12 hours, thereby acting as a rebasing mechanism that tries to center YAM’s price action.
YAM relaunch contracts have been deployed, and migration will go live at 8PM UTC.
We will run additional https://t.co/uKY1iFbNu7 UI tests with mainnet contracts once they are live, so the UI will be available shortly after 8PM UTC.
— Yam Finance (@YamFinance) September 18, 2020
Included in this rebase is a mechanism that allows a governance contract, controlled by YAM holders, to accrue value.
The idea with Yam is to allow the YAM holders to decide what they want to do with the potentially ever-increasing treasury. Thes funds could be distributed as dividends, used to fund developers, or otherwise. It’s this governance premium that gives YAM some value.
It’s worth noting that with this latest iteration of YAM, those that voted to “save” the project by voting to fix the bug in the original iteration, get automatic rewards that are vested over 90 days. If you were one of those voters, there may be some rewards waiting for you.
DeFi correction could harm meme coins, YAM included
Although Yam is starting out with a bang, touting a $75 million market capitalization, some fear that it may be time for the DeFi market to cool down. Unfortunately, in a cooling market, meme coins — or those that aren’t a pivotal aspect of Ethereum — are likely to be the first to lose value.
Commenting on DeFi’s short-term outlook, Qiao Wang, a former head of product at Messari, said:
“It all started with COMP. SUSHI was the blow-off top. UNI was the relief rally. Mini-winter is nice though as we can focus on building again. Next year will be a good year. Micro lots of new exciting products and macro risk-on everywhere.”
Others have also pointed to clear exhaustion in the DeFi space, with some prominent names actually announcing that they are taking profits or tethering some of their capital to try and step away from the game in the short term.