Introducing Babylon Chain: Bridging DeFi with the Bitcoin Blockchain
Polychain Capital and Hack VC have recently led an $18 million Series A funding round for Babylon Chain, a protocol that aims to bridge the decentralized finance (DeFi) ecosystem with the Bitcoin blockchain. The funds raised will be used to support the development of Babylon’s Bitcoin Staking protocol, which enables proof-of-stake (PoS) networks to stake BTC, thereby adding liquidity and security to emerging chains.
In a PoS chain, participants validate transactions by staking the chain’s native token. The security and integrity of a PoS chain depend on the amount of tokens staked. On the other hand, Bitcoin uses a different mechanism called proof-of-work (PoW), where miners solve complex mathematical problems to validate transactions. Babylon Chain aims to combine both worlds into one by introducing its Bitcoin Staking MVP, which reduces inflation pressure on PoS chains and strengthens the security of emerging chains.
The startup’s biggest challenge is to remotely “slash all safety violations without having a smart contract on the Bitcoin chain.” To overcome this issue, Babylon Chain claims to use accountable assertions, finality gadgets, Bitcoin emulation, and timestamps. Their construction is modular and can be used on top of all PoS consensus protocols, without the need for any soft or hard forks of Bitcoin.
Staking BTC could pave the way for more developers to build solutions on the Bitcoin network. As the world’s first and major cryptocurrency, Bitcoin currently has a market capitalization of $847.8 billion. A recent report by Glassnode found that 66% of its circulating supply has been dormant for at least a year. Babylon Chain aims to unlock the potential of this dormant supply and enable Bitcoin-backed security services for the broader blockchain ecosystem.
The Series A funding round also saw participation from additional investors including Framework Ventures, Polygon Ventures, Castle Island Ventures, OKX Ventures, Finality Capital, Breyer Capital, Symbolic Capital, and IOSG Ventures.
With the development of Babylon Chain’s Bitcoin Staking protocol, the DeFi ecosystem can now leverage the liquidity and security of the Bitcoin blockchain. This integration has the potential to drive innovation and development on the Bitcoin network, addressing one of the challenges faced by the original blockchain. As the cryptocurrency market continues to evolve, projects like Babylon Chain are pushing the boundaries and exploring new possibilities for the industry.