LUNA-Bound: Exploring the Terra Ecosystem

LUNA-Bound: Exploring the Terra Ecosystem

 

Overview


In a year that’s full of exciting crypto projects making waves, Terra has been one of the standouts. Since launching in late 2020, Terra has added several new projects and their respective tokens, including Mirror (MIR) and Anchor (ANC). While each is compelling on its own, these projects truly shine when viewed as part of a broader ecosystem. 

Since we wrote about Terra and LUNA (its main governance token) just three short months ago, this article provides only a brief overview of the project. For those seeking a more general introduction to the Terra ecosystem, a list of resources is provided at the end. 

 

The Year So Far


A quick glance at the LUNA token’s growth explains much of the buzz around Terra and its associated projects. At time of writing, the LUNA token was trading around $17.60 — up from $1.31 on January 26. Not a terra-ble return.
 

Figure 1: LUNA Token Price Performance - Past 3 Months

 

While no one would argue that hype has played a role in LUNA’s explosive growth, Terra’s value is rooted in real-world factors. According to its founder, Do Kwon, Terra ranks third in number of transactions on all blockchains (after BTC and Ethereum) in September 2020. 

Terra’s success in attracting participants is due in part to the program’s exposure to the booming retail payments market in East Asia. The associated e-wallet, Chai, has more than 2 million active users and over $1.2 billion in annualized transaction volume. 

Consequently, Terra has proven able to generate robust cash flows, which it can return as rewards to its network participants:

 

Figure 2: Cash Flow from Terra Tokens

Terra has been equally successful in producing new, value-adding innovations. Early in 2021, the Mirror (MIR) protocol launched. Mirror enables users the ability to gain price exposure to U.S. equities (i.e. stocks) by purchasing synthetic assets: tokens that track the price. 

The hype around GameStop earlier this year revealed the value of a token that is immune to interference. Many retail traders were incensed by Robinhood’s decision to temporarily halt trading. Additionally, traders outside the United States frequently have difficulty accessing the U.S. stock market. Mirror offers these users the ability to participate in price action without owning the underlying assets directly. 

For more information on the Mirror Protocol, check out the Resources at the end of this article.

An exciting new entrant to the Terra ecosystem earlier this year was Anchor (ANC). Part of Terra’s ethos is maintaining price stability for its native stablecoin (UST), in response to fluctuations in other stablecoins (especially DAI) due to market pressures. 

 

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