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Blockchain technology is about to transform every trust-based interaction of our lives, from financial services to identity, from health care to our Internet of Things devices. In this podcast, host Laura Shin talks with industry pioneers across tech, financial services, health care, government and other sectors about how the blockchain and cryptocurrency will open up new opportunities for incumbents, startups and everyday people to interact more efficiently, directly and globally.

Sep 8, 2020

Olaf Carlson-Wee, the founder and CEO of Polychain Capital, goes deep into yield farming, fair launches and how decentralization will upend the traditional notion of the corporation. In this episode, he talks about:

  • when it makes sense for a team to introduce a liquidity mining scheme, and when it doesn't
  • the difference between yield farming and ICOs when it comes to investing
  • his thoughts on YFI, as well as YAM, and the pace at which unaudited DeFi projects are
  • moving forward
  • the three advantages he sees in automated market makers as opposed to centralized
  • his thoughts on Uniswap and SushiSwap and why he's not sure Uniswap will make a token
  • his thoughts on fair launches and whether he thinks they will threaten traditional crypto VCs
  • whether the CRV token launch really was instigated by someone unrelated to the team
  • his thoughts on the yEarn yETH vault and what it says about where the DeFi space is going
  • what he sees as the pros and cons of rebasing
  • why he sees projects like YFI as a new kind of corporation
  • whether he thinks Ethereum will scale fast enough to meet the demand already being put on it
  • why he thinks systems like Polkadot are going to expand what is possible in the same way that Ethereum expanded beyond what was possible with Bitcoin
  • whether he thinks the yields from yield farming will pull investors away from staking on Ethereum 2.0
  • what he thinks DeFi teams should do to improve security
  • Bitcoin on Ethereum and what he believes it could mean for DeFi in the future
  • the chatter around a potential public offering from Coinbase, and what's in store for Polychain in the future


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Episode links: 

Olaf Carlson-Wee:

Polychain Capital:


Previous interviews with Olaf on Unchained and Unconfirmed:


Why trading on automated market makers has risen so quickly: 


Launch of yEarn/YFI:


Dex volume over time:


YAM recap:


YAM team’s plans going forward: YAM Post-Rescue Attempt Update. At approximately 6PM UTC, on Wed August… | by Yam Finance | Aug, 2020 | Medium


SushiSwap vs. Uniswap:


Ian Lee of IDEO CoLab Ventures on fair launches vs. VC coins:


And on fast-follower forks:


CRV token launch:


yEarn's yETH vault:


Ethereum's transition to 2.0:


Security in DeFi:

Whether Coinbase will do a token offering when it goes public: