[BIP-567] OpCo Admin & Ops supplementary budget for Q2 2024

Service Provider / Organisation Name & Overview:

Balancer OpCo Limited (or the “Balancer OpCo”) is a wholly owned operating subsidiary of the Balancer Foundation. It is an integral element of the Balancer Foundation corporate structure supporting the Balancer DAO. It serves three primary functions: (1) Administrative and Operational; (2) housing Ecosystem and Protocol infrastructure; and (3) Product Development.

The OpCo budget is approved until the end of June 2024 under [BIP-349]. This proposal deals with changes to the Administrative and Operational (Admin & Ops) element of the OpCo, that goes hand and hand with the Foundation, seeking additional budget allocation to shift personnel currently being funded in the Maxis and services previously budgeted under the Product team.

The changes introduced this quarter present cost-savings opportunities to the ecosystem as a whole, reducing the Treasury’s burn rate. For full reference, please refer to these funding proposals from this round:

Protocol Infrastructure

These are third party services that are used throughout the ecosystem and are critical to the ongoing operation of the protocol and DAO’s infrastructure. It made sense to show them separately from the Product proposal, where they were previously reported under “Non-People Costs”. They include RPC providers, domain hosting, Gitbook and Github, cloud storage and many other essential tools and services to the ecosystem as a whole.

Non-People Costs related to Protocol Infrastructure have now been removed from the Product budget, and shown here. This proposal allocates them more correctly for a better overview of costs, both of the product team and the broader Balancer protocol ecosystem.

Note that this is supplementary to the ecosystem subscriptions/services that were already accounted for in OpCo’s Year 2 funding on [BIP-349].

Operations

From Q2/24, the responsibilities of the Foundation’s CEO (to be deprecated) are being proposed in the Foundation here to be handed over to @Danko8383 as a service provider for operations and administration at the direction of the board, also bringing over other ecosystem-wide domains of operations currently under the scope of the Balancer Maxis.

Such tasks on these domains are often delegated to community contributors knighted as “Ballers”. By doing so, the DAO incentivizes organic community engagement and decentralized contributions on general inquiries, moderation and user support. These activities are intrinsically related to the protocol infrastructure and ecosystem, which corroborates to the cost-center shift as well.

The Ballers are currently being held on the following domains, living under the Balancer Maxis umbrella to fulfill tasks under Danko’s leadership:

  1. Community Engagement
  • Managing community interactions
  • Discord user support
  • Balancer weekly report (Newsletter)
  • Governance report (weekly Twitter posts)
  1. Outreach and Anti-Scam Oversight (see latest report here)
  • Leading efforts against scam activities within the Balancer ecosystem.
  • Pen-testing of security infrastructure
  • Take down of scam sites

Accounting and Bookkeeping

From [BIP-349], the Balancer OpCo allocated $2,000 USD/month for accounting and bookkeeping. This budget was never used in full, seeing some cost-saving opportunities driven by GroundWorks and a bookkeeper taking on this role. This approach worked during the market down-cycle, but is not sustainable going forward.

To further decentralize the DAO, the OpCo is contracting with Lemma, an accounting firm based in the Cayman Islands specialized in DAO services. This will also bring more substance to the activities in our current jurisdiction, given the ops/admin will be outsourced elsewhere.

During commercial negotiations, Lemma has agreed to take a portion of payments in BAL allocations, on a proportion of 4/1 ($1600 USDC and $400 worth in liquid BAL tokens), signaling they’re alignment with Balancer’s success, showing no intention of selling in the short-term.

This budget projects the spending is USD, while also accounting for a supplement of $500 USD for extraordinary hours and a professional bookkeeper.

Adhere to [BIP-372] and the SP standards

YES

Length of Engagement & Budget: Q2’24

The proposed budget for this quarter supplements the allocations made in BIP-349 (ruling from Q3’23 to Q2’24)

$46,414 for non-people costs (Protocol Infrastructure);
$12,000 + 750 BAL to be locked/vested (Ballers);
$1,500 for accounting and bookkeeping;

Total supplement for Q2’24: 59,914.00 USDC + 750 BAL

Impact on the Treasury

Balancer OpCo holds enough USDC and BAL to cover the requested funding. This was saved due to the reduction in spend achieved by SPs vs their original budgets. For that reason, no token transfer is required from the DAO for this proposal.

The table below summarizes where costs were previously budgeted, and where they are now being proposed. In addition, the changes proposed by the restructuring will introduce $76,716 USD annualized net savings to the DAO (based on current projections):

ETH Address to Receive Funds:

Not necessary as this proposal can be covered by funds currently held at the Balancer OpCo.

Link to Service Provider Agreement (if going through the Balancer OpCo):

Not applicable given this is internal / for the OpCo itself.

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https://snapshot.org/#/balancer.eth/proposal/0x4c9889961c9fc2871c19f49a274894c9c7cb9ed2eb8e630cd2f83124a7cdce8f

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