After an action-packed first 3.5 weeks since the launch of Orb, I’m delighted to share our first monthly community update.
Orb Collective Inc. launched as planned on Aug 1st, with a smooth transition for 14 employees + consultants who were previously with BLabs, plus one new hire who officially joined us on day 1.
We had a tight window for meeting a slew of legal, accounting, and operational deadlines and managed to pull it off, while hitting the ground running with little to no slowdown in team productivity.
High-level opening notes
In its first few weeks, Orb immediately stepped up to fill a need in cross-team coordination on a shared vision for Balancer’s top objectives and a roadmap of the most critical products, features, improvements, and initiatives for ecosystem contributors to work on collectively.
This has entailed:
Presenting a vision for Balancer’s short, mid, long term objectives.
Quickly establishing a streamlined process for an ecosystem-wide Q3 roadmap by syncing with each engineering team lead and prioritizing the remaining projects for the quarter, with consideration for available capacity and alignment with high-level priorities, without breaking momentum on projects that were already in flight.
Designing and implementing a thorough process for planning our Q4 roadmap, engaging all Balancer core contributors who will participate in: a Q3 retrospective analysis, Q4 strategy/ideation discussion, submitting project proposals, proposal review and feedback, and voting on Q4 projects.
Goals for Q3 & Q4:
- Strengthen the DAO’s financial position.
- Make Balancer easier to use.
- Scale Boosted Pools and veBAL.
- Expand Balancer to Gnosis Chain and zkSync.
- Develop and launch Managed Pools use cases.
During these initial weeks, we have focused on growing Orb’s engineering resources, known as the Integrations Team. We will continue to focus on strengthening this area beyond August, to accelerate/improve execution of partner integrations and support of ecosystem developers. This is an absolutely crucial part of Balancer’s growth strategy.
On day 1, we hired Sebastian, AKA @Mkflow, as a Solutions Engineer. He is stepping into a key role, as a much needed interface between partner projects building on/integrating with Balancer and our integrations engineers. Sebastian has been a valuable contributor to the Balancer DAO for some time now, and will now be even more hands-on as a full-time member of the Orb team. Welcome to the team, Sebastian!
On August 15th, we hired @moose, Orb’s new Director of Engineering, on a 3 month basis. Moose comes to us from his recent role as Dir. of Eng. at Amplitude (~800 employees) and brings a depth of experience having previously served as a CTO, VP of Engineering, and staff engineer along his journey. He’s also been professionally coaching CTO’s for the past several years. The dude is an all-star and we’re really excited to have him on the Orb team. Welcome!
We are also currently actively interviewing candidates for an Integrations Engineer role, to improve our ability to quickly execute on high-value partner integrations. If you’re interested, please reach out to us!
Now, I’ll provide updates on the team-specific work that has been done this month within Orb Collective:
- Three published articles - two in the pipeline for August
- MetaStable Pools Video
- Twitter stats
- Impressions - +4%, Profile Visits - +14.8%, Mentions - +1.5%, Followers - 130K
- Twitter transition - taking over the @balancer twitter account and soon implementing some changes to Balancer’s twitter strategy - more info coming soon.
- Partnerships: RocketPool x Beets MetaStablePool co-marketing and Lido x Beets Pool co-marketing
- Podcast Update: first episode sent to editing and another one in the pipeline for August
- Knowledge Center (the place to learn more about how to build on Balancer) and Question Center (the place to find answers to most asked questions) are live
- DevCon Planning
- Managed Pools
- Coordinating on architecture with IndexCoop
- Validated core features in simulated environment
- Quantified potential losses due to rebalance, add/remove
- Partner and Grantee
- Cron Finance and XS Finance are developing TWAMM on top of Balancer
- Worked with Aave on gauge staking integration to support BPTs as collateral
- Working with Tetu on their pool/relayer/asset manager
- Onboarded Sebastian into the Solutions Engineer role
- Improving Asset Manager (application research, documentation, prototyping)
- Research digging into the nitty-gritty of core contracts
- Managed Pools: Product Management & UX/UI
- Working with Smart Contracts, Integrations and Front-end teams. Designing new UX/UI for the upcoming Managed Pools product.
- veBAL: UX/UI
- Multi-token voting, vote caps, resubmission of votes prompts for people using under-utilized voting power, expired locks
- Pool migration – UX/UI
- Designed for migrating liquidity for stable pools affected by security vulnerability.
- Generalized join/exit of Stable Phantom pools (WIP): UX/UI
- New designs allowing people to add single token liquidity or an advanced option for multi-token proportional joins. Also allows proportional base pool token exits or single asset exits.
- Collaboration with partners
- Helped with Multifarm veBAL dashboards + Beets ‘Balancer powered’ logo options.
- Ecosystem shared tools and services are set-up
- Notion: wiki, info hub
- Slack: communication tool
- Asana: project management
- Lattice: ecosystem org charts, engagement and pulse surveys
- Planning our in-person ecosystem ONsite in Bogotá. It’s less than two months away!
- Scoping the first Managed Balancer Pool with Index Coop
- MVP Launch Q3/Q4
- Additional Products in the works utilizing MBPs
- Olympus DAO Moving Primary Liquidity Home to Balancer
- Utilizing OHM/DAI/ETH Managed Pool
- Potential MVP for Asset Managers
- Setting the stage for a future Gnosis Chain launch
- Building rapport and relationships within the Gnosis Chain ecosystem
- Analyzing the current state of Gnosis Chain and the best spots for partnership
- 15+ Pitches made on 80/20 pools for vote escrow (ve) systems, veBAL and additional Balancer features in various stages of the Partnership Process
- 5-10 Projects on Backlog waiting for Boosted Pool Integrations (Stable Pool Fix now in place and these can start getting crossed off soon™)
It’s been an awesome first month as a service provider to the Balancer DAO and we’re just getting started! We’re honored to be in this position and are working hard to return maximum value to the DAO, well beyond the financial investment made in us, and we hope it shows so far. It is our passion and pleasure.
I also want to give special thanks to @kia for his past work on product roadmapping, which served as a super valuable template in developing our plans and procedures for the Q4 roadmap.