Thorstarter is a liquidity relayer and initial DEX offering platform for THORChain, enabling cross-chain swaps between long-tail crypto assets. 

Thorstarter builds on the original vision of THORChain — providing liquidity for cross-chain swaps — but aims to improve support for long-tail crypto assets by offering a fairer launch platform for them. The platform promises to become one of the most exciting projects in the decentralized finance ecosystem and has recently attracted $1.5 million in private funding from a range of investors, with True Ventures and Nine Realms Capital leading the round.

Improving liquidity

Launched in 2018, the THORChain protocol has quickly become one of the most important projects in DeFi. The native token of the platform, RUNE, allows users to hold and swap other native tokens with ease. Projects wishing to “list” on THORChain can do so by committing capital to the protocol. Priority is given to projects with the most liquidity depth — that is, those which commit the most RUNE to the protocol.

The popularity of the platform has also attracted a highly engaged, dedicated and innovative community. Recent projects such as its mainnet launch, ChaosNet, and the Raise the Caps Campaign, have contributed to the perception that THORChain is becoming the de facto swap platform for all crypto assets. Despite all these advantages, there are some obstacles associated with using it. In its current state, THORChain limits the number of available assets which can pool with RUNE and thus access multi-chain swaps.

Thorstarter aims to build on the popularity and core aims of THORChain, helping the platform overcome this emerging bottleneck. At the moment, THORChain only suits short-tail, economically significant assets such as Bitcoin (BTC) and Ether (ETH). The long tail of crypto is unable to access the cross-chain swapping and deep liquidity of THORChain. This significantly limits its ability to facilitate asset swaps for smaller asset classes. 

Enter Thorstarter

Indeed, a platform that allows THORChain to better support long-tail crypto assets is an exciting prospect, with some DeFi users comparing the approach to a multi-chain version of SushiSwap. The team behind Thorstarter believes that its platform can extend the capabilities of THORChain in exactly this way.

Thorstarter is a decentralized protocol to increase and relay liquidity through the native THORChain network. It allows users to efficiently and safely swap long-tail crypto assets and allows any smart contract-enabled blockchain to access liquidity from any other THORChain-compatible chain. The Thorstarter protocol uses XRUNE as a settlement currency between new projects, such as IDOs and THORChain’s active pools. 

The initial version of Thorstarter will continue a highly liquid pool of a new token, XRUNE, paired with RUNE. This pool will be available on a decentralized exchange with a swapping functionality similar to Asgardex. The fundamental concept is that users will be able to access Thorstarter IDO launches by buying and staking XRUNE. Thorstarter will then integrate a MetaMask-like wallet that uses THORChain as the swapping protocol. The wallet has a browser extension that works on Chrome and Brave, similar to MetaMask, making it extremely easy for new users to buy XRUNE right from their browser.

Therefore, Thorstarter acts as a horizontal layer for THORChain, leveraging its established network security and unique economic model to build the next generation of the RUNE ecosystem.

Investors signal confidence

To meet this challenge, the team at Thorstarter has partnered with key infrastructure projects, RUNE holders, developers and thought leaders. The Thorstarter team has collaborated with the core team at THORChain, ensuring that the upcoming launch of Thorstarter is executed fairly and securely and that projects launching on Thorstarter maintain a quality standard befitting the THORChain ecosystem.

The most recent funding round saw Thorstarter attract $1.5 million in capital, with True Ventures leading the round. True Ventures has previously invested in Duo, NPM and many other early-stage startups, and its support for Thorstarter will be important in the medium term. Other backers for this round are Nine Realms Capital, IDEO CoLab Ventures, Proof Group, Qi Capital, MetaConstant, Brilliance and Next Ventures.

This funding may signal that Thorstarter has the potential to become the default token swapping platform for the THORChain ecosystem. By providing THORChain users with greatly enhanced liquidity, Thorstarter could open the way to a fairer launch process for long-chain crypto assets. Eventually, THORChain promises to expand the functionality of THORChain, and the reach and impact of the platform.

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