Ethereum governance, and the downfall of celeb tokens: Finance Redefined

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Welcome to Finance Redefined, your weekly dose of essential decentralized finance (DeFi) insights — a newsletter crafted to bring you the most significant developments from the past week.

This past week, a new Galaxy report revealed Ethereum’s decentralized governance avoids direct on-chain voting, detailing key stakeholder roles and transparency challenges.

In other news, most celebrity tokens have fallen over 60% since launch, except for Iggy Azalea’s Mother Iggy (MOTHER) token, and Arthur Hayes unstaked $9.41 million worth of Pendle (PENDLE) tokens, raising community concerns about a potential price dump.

Who governs Ethereum? Galaxy report reveals all

Galaxy Digital has released a report showing that Ethereum’s decentralized governance is steered by off-chain voting rather than on-chain Ether (ETH) holder voting. Christine Kim, vice president of Galaxy Digital’s research team, released the report on June 3. It reveals multiple stakeholders who hold the keys to Ethereum’s governance.

According to the report, the groups collaborating on the off-chain processes include client teams, validator node operators, the Ethereum Foundation and decentralized application developers.

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Celeb tokens are down two-thirds since JENNER’s bizarre crypto debut

The majority of celebrity-backed tokens that launched last week, including Caitlyn Jenner (JENNER), Timeless Davido (DAVIDO), and Rich the Kid (RICH), have tanked at least 66% since peaking — though one token bucked that trend and is still setting new all-time highs.

One of the more notable celeb token launches recently was JENNER by American media personality Caitlyn Jenner on May 28. Many initially thought the token was part of a deep fake X account hack.

JENNER topped a $30 million market cap within the first 24 hours as people debated online whether the token was genuinely launched and endorsed by the celebrity. However, despite Jenner herself clarifying that it is legitimate, it has since fallen 79% from its all-time high of $0.0061.

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Arthur Hayes unstakes nearly $10 million worth of Pendle: Time to sell?

Arthur Hayes, the co-founder of BitMEX and a crypto community figure, unstaked 1.55 million Pendle (PENDLE) tokens worth $9.41 million. The unstaking of his PENDLE tokens has sparked community concerns about a price dump, as Hayes currently holds 1.69 million tokens.

With an average buying price of $2.24 per token, Hayes’ holdings currently have an unrealized profit of around $6.46 million.

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Vitalik Buterin-backed Nocturne protocol shuts down operations overnight

Ethereum-native privacy protocol Nocturne Labs is shutting down its operations. Nocturne, backed by prominent cryptocurrency experts, including Ethereum co-founder Vitalik Buterin, announced it was ceasing operations in a June 5 X post.

The company gave no explanation for the closure. Cointelegraph has approached Nocturne Labs for comment. Nocturne initially aimed to introduce private accounts and transactions to the Ethereum ecosystem.

In October 2023, the firm raised $6 million in a seed funding round led by Bain Capital Crypto and Polychain Capital, with participation from Buterin.

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DeFi market overview

Data from Cointelegraph Markets Pro and TradingView shows that DeFi’s top 100 tokens by market capitalization had a bullish week. Most traded in the green on the weekly charts. The total value locked in DeFi protocols remained above $105 billion.

Thanks for reading our summary of this week’s most impactful DeFi developments. Join us next Friday for more stories, insights and education regarding this dynamically advancing space.