Shade - Redefining The North Star Of Decentralized Finance

Redefining The North Star Of Decentralized Finance

Over two years have elapsed since the initial ideation of Shade Protocol. Originally, Shade had a vision for being a protocol focused on a stablecoin known as Silk - a censorship resistant privacy preserving stablecoin with next generation evolvability. Capable of reacting to the volatility of the 21st century.

We were told we couldn’t do it. To dream smaller. That the world only needs dollars.

And yet we endured.

We endured FTX.

We endured UST.

We endured global attacks on privacy.

We built in the open. Because despite our deep belief in privacy, we believe in the power of transparency. That the community should know our fallibility.

A truly decentralized world needs truly decentralized money. This was the battle cry of UST - to this day, the seeds of that vision, that energy continue to ripple outwards. For those closest to it, we believed crypto was on the precipice of a breakthrough. One that did not involve or need the establishments of traditional financial institutions to give their approval.

A look even deeper into the values of Terra give us clues to what birthed it all: the promise that crypto would bridge back to our everyday lives. That what I did on a blockchain didn’t exist in a vacuum. That it was mere seconds, no. Mere blocks away from transitively crossing into everyday life. Into a grocery store purchase. A tip. A salary.

We would do so with our phones. With next generation debit cards. With crypto wallets that your mom and dad could use. Finance was suddenly exciting; a promise of inclusion into a fair system instead of one designed to perpetually extract from you.

At the heart of blockchain is the drive for fair markets. Because that is all everyone wants in this world - they want their hard work and labour to be fairly stored, fairly transacted, and perfectly protected from the malicious forces at large.

Thus, the more time I’ve spent in Web3 the more I’m realizing a simple truth. Shade set out to build a transformative stablecoin (we did in fact launch it) and we thought the dream of what we were building was already too big. In many ways, too ambitious. “Too early” some would say to us. “If you just wait a couple of years, the world will be ready for what you’ve built.”

I’m convinced that the dream of Shade is morphing into something much larger and powerful than a globally transactable, censorship resistant, privacy-preserving, stable form of payment. You see, Silk is but a single building block.

One of many blocks that when strung together form a fortress, a market, an oasis.

All in one place.

Thus births a new vision.

We believe every human should have private access to a global decentralized bank in the palm of their hands.

This bank would aim to be:

  • Credibly neutral
  • Secure
  • Censorship resistant
  • Decentralized
  • Privacy-preserving
  • Solvent
  • Digital
  • Programmatic
  • Near zero fees
  • Fast
  • Globally accessible

Let me paint a picture. You receive a $200 paycheck for your job. You open up your phone, and convert your $200 paycheck into $200 of SILK on your phone. You then privately deposit your SILK into Earn - a money market yielding 6% on the lending/borrowing of your SILK. You already have $20,000 in this account. Recently, you’ve wanted to purchase a motorcycle but you want to do it via a loan. Using 4 ETH on your account, you take a loan out against ETH by minting SILK. Using the payments application, you seamlessly purchase the motorcycle. Behind the scenes, the SILK was converted to USDC which was accepted by the merchant. Over the course of the next 12 months, you pay off your SILK loan using the yield earned from the $20,200 worth of money market deposits. Not only that, but on a weekly basis you take some of your money market yield and load up your SILK debit card - empowering you to seamlessly purchase groceries and other everyday goods. Naturally, you like to dabble with other cryptocurrencies - the Shade app has all of these features mere taps away on your phone. One of your favorite features is the Venmo like experience of the SILK Pay portion of the app. Empowering you to request funds from your friends and seamlessly pay them for rent.

The best part?

All of these transactions are private.


Only you have the sovereign access to your own keys. Fortunately, Shade has excellent decryption tools & tax software extensions should you choose compliance.

This is the future of finance. Where decentralized finance applications seamlessly integrate into your everyday life. Where capital migrates from banks to Meta Apps like Shade - global infrastructure accessible by all. With SILK at the center of it all, a beautiful forex and payments tool to unite both the liquidity and user experience.

So let’s read that one more time.


We believe every human should have private access to a global decentralized bank in the palm of their hands.


I believe that one of the core problems with Web3 is that everyone continues to build separate primitives in isolation with fractured liquidity, fractured incentives, and fractured UX. The true beauty of Web3 emerges when all of the utility and functionality exists in a single location.

Convenience matters.
Accessibility matters.
Liquidity matters.
Sustainability matters.
Utility matters.

And so, as Shade sets off into the next two years of its journey I want one thing to be clear. We are not aimlessly wandering when you see us building 6 products in parallel. We are not wandering aimlessly when we relentlessly issue grant after grant after grant.


It is the opposite.

Our North star is crystal clear.

The empowerment of every sovereign individual with an equally sovereign, fair, private financial ecosystem.

All in the palm of your hand.

Is it absurd? Fantastical?


But there is only one way to find out.

Can you hear the music, anon?