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Season 3 of Binance Labs Incubation Program: Week 5 & 6 Recap

2022-01-10

Main Takeaways

  • Season 3 of Binance Labs Incubation Program resumes, with the nine incubation projects building on their skills and knowledge through mentorship sessions with industry leaders

  • In weeks 5 and 6, the incubation projects were mentored by the leaders of CertiK, Bancor and BBS

  • Product development and improvement are highly encouraged in the Binance Labs Incubation Program, with all the incubation projects reporting much progress since they first joined 

After taking a two-week break for the holidays, Season 3 of Binance Labs Incubation Program is back in full force!

Binance Labs, the venture capital arm and innovation incubator of Binance, is currently organizing Season 3 of its Incubation Program to support promising projects in the blockchain space. The Incubation Program is back in full force after taking a short break for the year-end holidays.

As always, mentorship is at the heart of the Binance Labs Incubation Program. Through sharings and dedicated guidance by mentors, the participating teams grow to be better equipped at developing and elevating their projects. There was a lot to learn in weeks 5 and 6. Two experienced industry leaders were invited by Binance Labs for the weekly fireside chat sessions.

Week 5: Eliminating Cybersecurity Risks with CertiK

Co-founder of CertiK, Prof. Ronghui Gu, led the fireside chat session for week 5. Founded in 2018 by professors of Yale University and Columbia University, CertiK is a pioneer in blockchain security, utilizing best-in-class AI technology to secure and monitor blockchain protocols and smart contracts. Most recently, CertiK closed an $80M Series B2 funding round, bringing its total valuation to nearly $1B.

For many blockchain and crypto startups, identifying and eliminating cybersecurity risks can be a really tough task. As the co-founder of the leading decentralized security solutions, Prof. Gu understands the importance of creating secure projects and the effort that goes behind it. He was able to offer valuable insights and advice to address the concerns of the nine incubation projects. 

1. Leverage the power of partnerships

During his sharing, Prof. Gu spoke about the importance of partnerships. Similar to how CertiK is a partner in Binance’s Project Shield, Prof. Gu encouraged the incubation projects to have a tech partner instead of hiring external vendors. From his experience, a tech partner is able to offer the best third party check for projects, from a cybersecurity and audit perspective. Moreover, due to the fast pace of the blockchain and crypto industry, internal auditing can often be hard and impractical. 

2. Learn and improve on failures

For Binance and many crypto exchanges, thorough audit is a requirement for token listing. In the future, audits might also be mandated by the regulatory authorities. Even so, hacking might still be a possibility. In such cases, Prof. Gu advised the incubation projects to learn from their experience and make the necessary improvements to their project codes. Internally, the team should upgrade their contract and check the admin keys. Externally, the team should consider whitehats and reaching out to experienced industry partners, such as Binance, for assistance. Throughout the process, the projects should always be transparent with the community. Although these scenarios are not ideal, they do offer a valuable learning experience and handling it professionally is key to rebuilding the community’s trust.

Week 6: Fundamentals of Great Organizational Culture with Bancor & BBS

In week 6, the fireside chat session was conducted by Eyal Hertzog, who is the Co-founder of Bancor as well as the Founder and CEO of BBS. Bancor is an on-chain liquidity protocol that enables automated, decentralized exchange on Ethereum and across blockchains. Meanwhile, BBS Network is a decentralized  Web 3.0 public network of user-run online message boards. 

Due to his vast entrepreneurial experience, including over a decade in the blockchain industry, Eyal’s sharing was focused on his journey as a founder and leader in this space. He also gave timely pieces of advice to the nine incubation projects, which can be encapsulated in two simple tips. 

1. Remain true to your mission

In his sharing, Eyal admitted that being an entrepreneur is not always easy. He started building and launching end-user ecosystems online in 1998, but did not achieve much success then. Yet, Eyal did not let the obstacles stop him from trying again. He believes that he is creating products that can potentially change the world in a positive way, and that passion and excitement has kept him going all these years. He advised the nine incubation projects to similarly remain true to their mission. The journey has its ups and downs, and as Eyal aptly puts it, “by genuinely trying, you are already doing a lot.” 

2. Foster a positive work environment

For Eyal, a great organizational culture starts with the people. He believes that the people play an extremely important role in a company’s success, and is thus committed to fostering a positive, inclusive work environment where everyone feels appreciated. He is also quick to address conflicts or tensions within the company. Product development and performance are important, but leaders should not neglect the value of team spirit in fostering an innovative and productive team. 

Incubation Project Updates

As part of the Incubation Program, the nine incubation projects gain access to dedicated resources and expert guidance needed to develop and improve on their products. Binance Labs and the incubation projects are excited to share further progress that have taken place since our last bi-weekly recap.  

Mint Club successfully launched the first-ever time token marketplace on BSC, called 1s.market, in early December. Over 500 times tokens were generated within just one month. More than 22% of the time tokens are already verified by the influencers and have developed into an interesting time token utility with their followers. In the coming weeks, more innovative social tokens and NFT projects will be launched on the Mint Club ecosystem. 

Raydius has been hard at work improving their platform. In the past few weeks, Raydius has made technical updates and improvements to various aspects of their platform, including the aggregator unit testing and docker deployment, USDT cross-chain route analysis and tracking, CI/CD configuration, and fault tolerance system. Additionally, Raydius is also working on front-end for domain name product integration and doing research on domain name services for fund receiving.

GAT Network has been actively building and engaging their community. On top of an AMA session with BSC News, GAT Network also recently started a weekly community hour. Hosted on Telegram, the community hour allows the GAT Family to get updates directly from the team and have their questions addressed. These efforts have been rewarded by the community, with GAT Network’s follower count increasing significantly (especially on Twitter) and the number of GAT holders more than doubled. During the Christmas season, GAT Network also embodied the spirit of giving and donated to UNICEF. 

Wombat Exchange announced that they have finished the swap and pool pages, and are currently undergoing internal testing. The Wombat team is also currently working tirelessly to redesign the landing pages, finalize the tokenomics, and finish up on the whitepaper. With the product developments and improvements in the works, Wombat Exchange is edging closer and closer to launch. In the near future, the Wombat team will be revealing further details on their testnet program and the amazing partnerships they have solidified. 

Tranching Protocol recently reached a big milestone in their journey. The team has launched an alpha version on the BSC testnet, and are currently undergoing multi-round internal tests for the product. This marks an essential step towards the full launch of their product. Moving forward, in the beta version, the team has plans to share an updated roadmap and files, including a use manual. Aside from progress in product development, Tranching Protocol has also been hard at work growing their community. Since enlisting to the Incubation Program, their social media community has grown by tenfold. 

SkyArk Studio revealed that they are partnering with 0xAdventure, an upcoming guild and middle layer system P2E booster. By leveraging on 0xAdventure, SkyArk Studio intends to build a strong GameFi ecosystem by producing both fully on-chain and only assets on-chain game systems. SkyArk Studio is also partnering with GEMS, an Esports 3.0 aggregator platform within an O2O ecosystem. Through this partnership, SkyArk Studio hopes to promote GameFi and onboard Web2 natives. More strategic partnerships will be announced in the coming weeks. 

Bird has been having a busy and exciting few weeks. The first product that Bird is bringing to the market, the Bird Launchpad Score, has recorded much progress on the R&D side. As part of Bird’s model development process, they are assessing patterns in on-chain data that can later be used in the final Launchpad Scoring model. While some of the insights gained from the R&D process have been expected, there were some unexpected (but exciting) findings which are currently being explored by Bird’s research team. Bird has also finalized formal partnerships with several new projects, including KSMStarter and Unvest, and will be announcing even more in the next few weeks. 

Copycat Finance recently announced that they have been officially audited by PeckShield, a blockchain security and data analytics company. The team also shared that there are plenty of new features coming up, as the Copycat Protocol prepares itself to take a big step forward in their development. 

Block Ape Scissors has released the highly anticipated Block Ape Scissors Beta. For at least two weeks, holders of the Block Ape Scissors Gamester NFTs can play the game and earn themselves $BAS tokens for providing feedback on the experience. So far, there are over 11K holders of $BAS. The team also announced multiple partnerships in recent weeks, including with Metadex, Prominence Games and Unix Gaming. 

Preview of Week 7-8

In weeks 5 and 6, the nine incubation projects got the opportunity to hear from and interact with experienced leaders within the blockchain industry. With Season 3 of the Incubation Program nearing the end, an amazing experience is coming soon. Stay tuned for further updates!

You can refer to the following blog posts for the earlier bi-weekly recaps:

Follow Binance Labs on Twitter to stay up-to-date with the Binance Labs Incubation Program and other initiatives. For those who are interested, application for Season 4 of the Incubation Program is now available here

Disclaimer: The incubation projects are in collaboration with Binance Labs only. Binance exchange currently bears no responsibility and is not connected to any of their future release of tokens (if any).