Brief History of Katana
Katana is the result of Solana’s most recent hackathon (named Ignition).
The Katana team joined the hackathon rather late. Even though they had very little time to build their MVP during this period, their product won the Solana Ignition’s grand prize of $75,000.
When you think about it, this is a huge achievement! Ignition was hosting over 5000 participants with a combined 588 projects. Needless to say, Katana has generated a lot of buzz since then.
Katana is built for asset management. The protocol gives users free access to automated vault strategies available on Solana. Normally, access to yield-generating tools like this is private and reserved for those with enough money. Some of the available strategies Katana offers are:
- Users being able to earn yield on volatility of assets
- Harvesting yields on market downturns
- Selling potential upside to lock in a guaranteed yield.
Katana’s ambitions do not end with their own protocol. In fact, the team has made it open so other developers can build on top of what they’ve created (literally). This infrastructure offers access in all corners without limitations or restrictions. This is something we do not see often in the crypto world!
Users can leverage Katana to develop their own decentralized application or protocol.
Katana protocol boasts of the fact that it easy to use and that it has a smooth user experience. Users do not need to be actively available to manage their assets as the processes are automated. All you have to do is deposit your assets into the vault of your choice (Vaults explained later).
By using price action mechanisms, Katana offers users a more sustainable yield that is better than liquidity mining strategies.
Users of Katana
Anyone can use Katana. As described in Katana’s Docs, the following are some of those who can leverage the protocol:
- DAO Treasuries: There are many Decentralized Autonomous Organizations on Solana that can make use of the yield generation processes e.g., DeGods NFT with more than a million dollars’ worth of revenue for their community.
- DeFi protocols: Protocols like Solend recently announced their partnership with Katana.
- FinTech Applications: Any Fintech app that need the services offered by Katana can leverage their available infrastructure.
- Retail users.
Benefits and Advantages of Katana
- Simplified Access to Complex Vault Strategies: A non-technical user can easily connect wallet and use.
- Automatic Rollovers: There is no need to actively get involved in managing your assets unless you want to deposit more or withdraw funds.
- Weekly Compounding: After the weekly cycle is over, the total earnings of the previous week is added to the capital and the total becomes the new base capital to work with in the vault.
- Automatic Strike Selection.
- Optimized Strategy Execution.
- Full Automation.
A Vault in DeFi is just like the traditional bank vaults. One major difference is the absence of cash in it.
Vaults use combination of funds deposited in a decentralized application or a DeFi protocol. This is a section of the protocol where users’ deposits go to.
Once you have selected the vault type that you want, you will have to deposit your funds there and automatically, by design, Katana helps you execute the available strategies for generating yields on your deposited asset.
After your assets are in the protocol, your funds are locked for a week during the locking period. During your weekly lock, the yield strategy to be implemented in that vault is executed on that asset.
Since Katana also prides itself in its automation of rollovers, users can leave their funds in it to autocompound until they want to withdraw it. By using the Katana web app, when a deposit is made into a specific vault its strategies are activated for the funds.
Your earnings (also known as returns) are represented in three phases – Current, Projected and Historical returns. Just as their names imply, they give you the information needed on your portfolio with regards to your own share in the yields earned in the vault where your funds have been deposited.
How to Deposit Funds Into Katana (and Earn Yield!)
This guide will show you how to deposit funds into a Katana vault to earn yield.
Total Time: 2 minutes
Connect your wallet to the Web App: app.katana.so
Make sure you are not in a restricted jurisdiction, otherwise the app will prevent you from using it! You can use a VPN to change which country you’re accessing the application from.
Choose your desired vault
Click on the vault that you’d like to deposit money into.
Enter the amount you want to deposit
Type in the total amount of tokens you’d like to earn yield on. In this case, I chose 100 $SRM
Deposit the funds
Approve the transaction in your wallet and wait for it to confirm on the blockchain!
Katana raised $5,000,000 in November 2021. This investment round was led by Framework Ventures. Other participants in the fundraising were Alameda Research, Coinbase Ventures, Darrel and Daryl Lau etc.
Ayush Menon is the founder of Katana. He is a Computer Science and Economics undergraduate in Harvard University. He is an experienced software engineer with an expertise building Rust-based decentralized applications. Previously, he worked at Delphi Digital where he helped built Mars Protocol on Terra as the founding software engineer. He once won the Raydium prize for building Laguna Finance during one of the previous Solana hackathons.
Eric Nie is a co-founder of Katana. He is a Computer Science and Math graduate from Carnegie Mellon University, Eric is an experienced software engineer who has worked for Jump Trading and Addepar. He has vast experience building complete decentralized products on the Ethereum blockchain network.
Some Future Plans
Currently, Katana charges zero fees in all the vaults in use. Although a fee mechanism has already been built into the protocol, it has not yet been implemented. The Katana protocol team will allow the protocol governance decide the fee with respect to the amount that will keep the protocol sustainable.
The developers in the community, if interested will be able to seamlessly build their own Frontend applications while leveraging Katana protocol.
Currently, it is the core team of Katana that determines the strategies to be used in the vault but with time, there will be platforms created to enable individuals to submit their own strategies in the protocol. This will grant users a lot of diverse choices with the same goal of generation yield for their crypto assets.