Zeta raises $8.5m to launch crypto derivatives platform built on Solana

Rick Steves

The platform is set to launch with a complete suite of derivatives, with both options and futures for the popular cryptocurrencies as well as undercollateralized trading, portfolio cross-margin, sub-second mark-to-market updates, instant settlement, as well as an orderbook and matching engine powered by Serum.

Zeta Markets has completed an $8.5M strategic funding round led by Jump Capital to develop and launch its decentralized finance (DeFi) futures and options exchange.

Built on Solana, the exchange will facilitate liquid, non-custodial, and under-collateralized derivatives trading.

Solana’s censorship-resistant infrastructure provides users with pricing updates, liquidations, the ability to execute trades and settle positions sub-second while paying less than $0.01 in gas fees, the venue explained.

Private token sale led by Jump Capital

The funding round was conducted via private token sale and had participation from Race Capital, Electric Capital, DACM, Airtree Ventures, Amber Group, Wintermute, Sino Global Capital, Genesis Block Ventures, QCP Capital, Alameda Research, Solana Capital, MGNR, 3kVC, Orthogonal Trading, LedgerPrime, and SkyVision Capital.

Tristan Frizza, Core Contributor to Zeta Markets, commented: “We’ve seen a Cambrian explosion in the Solana DeFi ecosystem since just the beginning of this year, with TVL accelerating over 100x to almost $15bn. The unparalleled performance of the underlying chain massively opens up the design space for innovative protocols. Zeta takes full advantage of this to bring the speed and deep liquidity of CeFi derivatives to DeFi, whilst remaining permissionless and fully composable.”

Chris McCann, Partner at Race Capital, said: “In June 2021, crypto derivative volume surpassed the spot market for the first time doing $3.2 trillion in volume compared to spot markets which did $2.7 trillion according to CryptoCompare. I believe derivatives will continue to be the main driving force for DeFi and derivatives will be an order of magnitude times higher in trading volume vs. their DEX counterparts. We’re super impressed with the entirety of Zeta’s core contributors backgrounds, passion and drive in the DeFi space, and I’m excited to help Zeta become #1 in the DeFi derivatives space.”

Saurabh Sharma, Partner at Jump Capital, stated: “DeFi options are ripe for innovation but have experienced low adoption so far due to high gas fees and low throughput “, said Saurabh Sharma, Partner and crypto lead at Jump Capital. “Leveraging Solana’s high throughput and unique hybrid OMM-orderbook approach, Zeta is enabling a unique DeFi Options primitive which will be a game changer for this space.”

Avichal Garg, Co-Founder & Partner at Electric Capital, said: “Zeta on Solana addresses the three key challenges holding back DeFi today — poor capital efficiency, unintuitive product design and high gas fees. Zeta has built one of the few well-designed, efficient, and easy to use DeFi platforms that does not sacrifice capabilities or user control. We are excited to see how users embrace Zeta in the coming months and years.”

Anatoly Yakovenko, President of the Solana Foundation, added: “Building a Nasdaq natively on the blockchain is something I always wanted to see happen on Solana. Zeta, winners of the Solana hackathon, are making this a reality for both options & futures and pushing the limits of what’s possible on-chain.”

A decentralized platform built on Solana

Zeta Markets has recently won the Solana Summer hackathon which featured over 13,000 participants worldwide. This garnered attention for the decentralized platform as it intends to take on the DeFi space.

Its under-collateralized nature allows traders to post a fraction of the full price of the future/option, while also performing cross-margining so that traders can account for all holdings whilst sharing profit and loss across all positions.

Zeta partners with top options market maker (OMM) which prices and quotes all options and futures on-chain and in real-time. This ensures depth of liquidity.

The platform is set to launch with a complete suite of derivatives, with both options and futures for the popular cryptocurrencies as well as undercollateralized trading, portfolio cross-margin, sub-second mark-to-market updates, instant settlement, as well as an orderbook and matching engine powered by Serum.

The $8.5 million raised will help accelerate the development and business growth of Zeta Markets, including marketing efforts as key strategic and market making partners.

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