Aussie DeFi exchange scaling up to become ‘EthMEX’

Australia’s largest DeFi platform Synthetix is scaling up to thousands of transactions per second, rolling out ETFs, binary options and more.

Synthetix has unveiled its ambitious 2020 roadmap which aims to transform it into a decentralised Ethereum-powered competitor to BitMEX.

Probably more importantly to Synthetix Network Token (SNX) holders, the leadership team now believe the DeFi platform is robust enough and provides a good enough user experience to start marketing it heavily to new users to increase volume into “tens of millions of dollars in daily volume”.

They’ll also be taking advantage of Ethereum’s new Optimistic Rollups scaling solution to increase transactions to thousand’s per second.

“There’s the potential for Ethereum to scale up significant before moving to proof of stake,” Synethic co-founder Kain Warwick said.

“We’re looking to incorporate (Optimistic Rollup) and to have a demo out in the next couple of months.

“Broadcast transactions on the network (currently) take up to five minutes to confirm – that limits the use cases. So the tighter we get the confirmation times and the quicker the system updates, the more trading volume. It’s a very big usability improvement.”

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Kain Warwick is the founder of, formerly known as Havven

Outrageously ambitious roadmap – but will it happen?

Posted on March 10 the roadmap says that 2019 was a year of building and refining, with little attention focused on attracting users to a subpar platform which is said would be “not only inefficient but actually detrimental to adoption because any users who has a poor trading experience will be unlikely to come back.”

However, the roadmap says that’s all changed:

“With the recent successful launch of Fee Reclamation and the upcoming release of continuous staking rewards we are now confident the system is robust enough to support tens of millions of dollars in daily volume. Our efforts can now transition to attracting this volume.”

For the uninitiated (and this is the very basic explanation) Synthetix is a decentralised exchange that uses ‘synthetic’ tokens for trading – for example a Synthetic Bitcoin token is tied to the price of Bitcoin, but doesn’t actually provide any ownership over a Bitcoin.

This allows the platform to provide unlimited liquidity as there’s no need to find a counterparty to a trade, as well as a range of interesting derivatives like Inverse Bitcoin, which is an easy way to short Bitcoin.

It’s all underpinned by a complicated SNX staking system, which can be very lucrative – but stakers also take on debt to pay for other people’s successful trades, so it’s not for the faint hearted.

Coming in 2020

The list of planned features is too extensive to detail here, but the headlines are:

    • Traditional asset classes – Equities, ETFs, Indices and more
    • New crypto synths
    • Leveraged Synths (5x and 10x BTC tokens)
    • Binary options
    • Advanced order types (limit, stop loss, stop limit etc)
    • Trading incentives (SNX rewards to traders based on volume)
    • Exchange interface enhancements (new markets and assets pages)
    • Optimistic Rollups (thousands of transactions per second)
    • Synthetic futures
    • Ether/DAI/BTC collateral
    • Trading delegation (which allows secure mobile trading)
    • Mobile interfaces
    • Differential fees (for different asset classes)

Synthetix admits it’ll be tough to pull off but says if they even manage part of it, centralised exchanges should be worried:

When we imagine sX with all of these features it’s hard not to be incredibly excited. There is little question sX will be one of the most compelling trading venues in the world once finalised. Yet even a subset of the features above will far exceed the functionality of centralised exchanges that dominate today.”

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