The GenesysGo IDO Platform — Trustless, Decentralized, Powered by $SHDW

The $SHDW IDO was a huge eye opener for us. As an infrastructure project, we didn’t really see how GenesysGo could inspire much faith if we didn’t power the $SHDW IDO ourselves. Imagine… being an infrastructure company and having to rely on someone else’s infrastructure? Oof…

In any case, it was a real learning experience for us. We’d never really dug into the software side of IDO code but when we do dig in to something we don’t do it halfway. After the $SHDW IDO ended, we realized that we were basically 90% of the way to an IDO platform already… and, given the network difficulties that some IDO platforms have caused the validator network lately, we decided to finish out that last 10%.

You see, some IDO platforms are built in such a way that causes the Solana validator network to slow down significantly due to bots spamming failed transactions at IDO pools that aren’t live and/or funded yet.

Additionally, nearly all IDO platforms on Solana are heavily centralized. Want to launch your IDO? You must first submit an application, hope you can get the IDO platform to notice you, and then meet whatever criteria are put in front of you.

Anyways, as I said, once the $SHDW IDO was over we realized that we were basically just a UI away from having an IDO Launchpad that was ready to ship. Not to brag… but even we were a little surprised by how incredibly smooth the $SHDW IDO was (okay… maybe just a little bragging…).

The $SHDW IDO was definitely smooth and the way the IDO was conducted was definitely novel but what was the biggest thing that made the $SHDW IDO unique? It was the first IDO powered by a decentralized RPC network on Solana.

That’s pretty huge… our elite team of Alpha Shadow Operators powered the first ever decentralized IDO on the Solana network and they did it like kings and queens.

So what makes the GenesysGo IDO Platform unique?

  1. Decentralization — Our IDO platform is powered by the largest decentralized RPC network on Solana.
  2. Decentralization… again! — Our IDO platform is designed to be a true touchless contactless experience. You don’t have to contact GenesysGo and extol the virtues of your project while we sit in judgement of you. Spend your time and energy extoling the virtues of your project to the people that matter… the Solana ecosystem.
  3. Trustless Automated Platform powered by Smart Contract — The UI walks you through creating the pools, assigning the appropriate wallets, and moving the funds. Everything is powered 100% on-chain via fully audited smart contracts built in Anchor. This also has the benefit of completely automating the entire platform.
  4. Touchless — We don’t want to be in the business of vetting projects. We build infrastructure. We build servers. We also don’t want developers to have to feel as if they need to come “kiss the ring” so to speak. Developers won’t need to DM us or fill out a lengthy application and then wait for someone to get back to them.
  5. Powered by $SHDW — The platform doesn’t require you to give a % of your IDO tokens away either. The last thing we want to do is contribute to the incredibly poor tokenomics we have seen over the past couple of years. What the Solana ecosystem doesn’t need is another entity trying to snatch up a % of a project’s IDO tokens so that way it can turn around and dump those tokens on the ecosystem. Instead, the platform will require projects to deposit $15,000 USDC equivalent in $SHDW tokens. The $SHDW tokens taken in by the IDO platform smart contracts will be sent to the Shadow Operator emissions wallet. TL;DR — The IDO platform’s fees are fed directly to the Shadow Operators contributing compute to the decentralized RPC network that powers over half of Solana’s total traffic.

Is this a Launchpad?

No, this is an IDO platform. An IDO launchpad basically tries to promise projects a participant base by saying, “Look at how many people hold our launchpad token!” In our minds this is not only disingenuous but also runs counter to our core belief structure. The value we bring is strong, solid infrastructure that will allow developers to have a strong foundation to launch their project on their own. Launchpad platforms are also by their very nature in capable of being trustless and touchless. We don’t want any project to be forced to tie their IDO to the $SHDW token by forcing them to do token pairs and we don’t want to force members of the ecosystem who might be interested in a particular IDO to have to spend funds on $SHDW when they could have allocated those funds to the IDO they were interested in.

What does the process look like?

  1. Select the details for the type of IDO you want. Do you want a Dutch style auction or traditional? Do you want a floor price for your token (i.e. set a minimum you’re willing to sell your token for)? Do you want there to be a withdraw period or no? The platform uses the $SHDW IDO format but gives you the ability to customize.
  2. Create your IDO pool, token pairs, and tell the platform which wallet addresses you will be using for the IDO (i.e. IDO wallet, Treasury Wallet, etc).
  3. Set the day and time you want your auction to go live and how long you want the different phases of your auction to be.
  4. Go out and market your IDO! *Disclaimer* We will not help you market your IDO. We will not retweet for you. Please don’t DM us saying, “We’re using your IDO platform! We’d love your support!” We’re very committed to our role as an infrastructure provider for the Solana ecosystem. As such, it is incredibly important that we remain as neutral as possible and agnostic when it comes to who is using your infrastructure. We love all of the projects that use our networks equally and we never want to accidently give off the appearance of picking winners/losers or favoring one project over another.
  5. Post-IDO, use the UI to collect your IDO funds and transfer them to the wallet address you designated in #2.
The utilitooooooooor!!!!

Why does the platform require $SHDW?

For starters, the $SHDW token is designed to be a multi-use case token. The $SHDW collected by the platform ultimately provides the emissions that incentivize Shadow Operators (the independent server operators that make up GenesysGo’s decentralized RPC network). These independent operators provide compute at their own expense to help power the Solana blockchain. The platform collects $SHDW and sends it to the $SHDW emissions wallet. From there, that refills the pool from which Shadow Operators get paid. Ultimately, the amount of $SHDW going into the pool would be higher than the emissions coming out resulting in a slight decrease in circulating supply of $SHDW over time.

Why does it cost so much $SHDW?

Our goal for the platform is to allow any project to easily and seamlessly launch an IDO without having to worry about to hassles that come alongside most IDO platforms. That said, we also recognize that there needs to be some kind of mechanism to ensure projects have some kind of “skin in the game” before they IDO. We felt that $15,000 USDC equivalent in $SHDW tokens represented a reasonable and yet not insignificant amount.

What we don’t want to do is unleash a torrent of trash IDOs on to the ecosystem and if a project is not able to get together $15,000 USDC worth of $SHDW tokens then they definitely are not ready to have an IDO. IDO’s are also many times more complicated and difficult to successfully pull off than something like say an NFT mint. Between the requirement of $SHDW tokens and the greater level of difficulty inherent to IDOS, we believe we have struck a solid balance.

Will the Smart Contract code be open sourced?

The smart contract code will not be open sourced as this would defeat the purpose of launching an IDO platform to begin with. As such, we will not be launching the platform until the smart contract code has completed a full security audit. The results of that security audit will be fully published and they will be accessible from the IDO platform for full transparency.

Tying it all together

We’ve always described GenesysGo as a “blockchain infrastructure project.” However, there is much more to infrastructure than just servers. Prior to the $SHDW IDO we were focused solely on hardware and we are very very good at hardware. The $SHDW IDO gave us the opportunity to bring on several talented software developers and the impact of their talent was directly seen in how smoothly the $SHDW IDO experience was.

Once we brought together talented software developers with talented hardware developers we realized that we suddenly had the ability to redefine what the term “infrastructure” meant. By creating synergy between hardware and software, we now have the ability to expand the utility of $SHDW beyond RPC servers and storage…

The IDO platform represents the first of many new utility use cases for the $SHDW token and we’ll be sharing additional use cases over time. At the moment though, we are almost entirely focused on finishing the buildout for the Shadow Drive so we can provide the Solana ecosystem with a better and more optimized storage solution than is currently available on the Solana chain at this time.

However, given that we had all the makings for an IDO platform sitting right there in front of us we couldn’t resist spending a few days putting those pieces together. As said, we will be launching the IDO platform as soon as the smart contract code has finished being audited and we have published those results. After that, the platform will live as long as Solana does and be available for any and all to use. That’s the beauty of blockchain, we can use it to build meaningful platforms that help move the ecosystem forward but do it in a way that doesn’t force the ecosystem to become more and more reliant on a centralized team over time. That’s what decentralization is all about.



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GenesysGo is a Blockchain Service Provider. We provide robust and secure infrastructure to give builders, stakers, and users the performance they deserve.