Unfold 2022 by CoinDCX nudges India forward on its journey to becoming a global leader in Web3
Unfold 2022, India’s biggest Web3 event organised byfrom August 26-28, 2022, was wrapped up on a high note. Its overwhelming success and the magnitude of the event reflect what can be accomplished when the entire industry is committed to a shared goal, and the goal is nothing less than making the country a Web3 leader, shaping the next phase of the internet revolution.
The event saw over 1500+ participants, the launch of a pathbreaking DeFi product ‘Okto’, 86 innovative Web3 use cases project submissions during hackathon by more than 250 web developers, and 10 entrepreneurs chosen from over 100 entries showcasing their project ideas during Demo Day, the event was by every measure the biggest and best ever in the Web3 space.
The event saw many firsts:
- 3000+ participants in person and virtually, with 50+ global speakers representing the best Web3 companies and startups, thought leaders, etc.
- Launch of a globally first-of-its-kind DeFi App ‘Okto’ with easy and native access to Web3.
- 250+ Web3 developers as participants in 100+ teams, 86 project submissions, and over $60,000 in bounties distributed to the winners sponsored by 13 leading global Web3 companies, making it one of the biggest in the history of Web3 hackathons.
- Ten investment-ready startups pitched their ideas to a room full of India’s leading ‘Web3 investors’ and ‘ambassadors’, including CoinDCX Ventures.
Commencing the event with a high note
“We are creating a new digital world! We believe it’s going to take society in a new and better direction - that’s open, fair and transparent, and accessible to everyone in the globe.” said Sumit Gupta, Co-founder and CEO, CoinDCX as delivered the welcome address to a packed conference.
“India is in a strong position to lead innovation globally. We have the largest number of Web3 developers globally and are growing faster than ever. We already have 25 million Web3 users and will have the highest number in the world in the next three to five years,” he added, talking about India’s potential to be a leader in the global Web3 landscape.
CoinDCX’s launches DeFi app Okto to drive next wave of adoption
Neeraj Khandelwal, Co-founder, CoinDCX, announced the launch of its DeFi app Okto, a keyless self custody walet which allows anyone with an internet connection to take part in the decentralised economy. With the app, users can access 20 chains and 100 protocols. The firm also revealed its waitlist for the mobile app and will launch the first version in the upcoming days.
“If Web3 is going to be successful and more decentralised, it should be easier for customers to experience and for developers to build. We’re building Okto to solve these challenges,” said Neeraj.
“The years 2022-23 are going to see us overcome these challenges and make it more mainstream,” he added.
India: a part of the ascending world
“There is the descending world and the ascending world, and I believe India is a big part of the ascending world,” said Balaji Srinivasan, bestselling author of The Network State who delivered the keynote address.
In his keynote address, Balaji introduced the concept of the network state: a country you can start from your computer, a state that recruits like a startup, a nation built from the internet rather than disrupted by it.
The fundamental concept behind the network state, Balaji explained, is to assemble a digital community and organise it to crowdfund physical territory. However, that territory is not in one place — it’s spread around the world, fully decentralised, hooked together by the internet for a common cause. “Because every citizen has opted in, it’s a model for 100 percent democracy rather than the minimum threshold of consent modelled by 51 percent democracies,” he added.
A bear market in crypto investing
The demo day, which was also part of the event, saw some exceptional ideas from the entrepreneurs. The perks of winning the demo day included a $1 million pool of funding from CoinDCX and $25K of BeliefDAO grants from Buidlers Tribe.
“We’re seeing a bear market in crypto investing. The prices might have crashed, but the ecosystem is growing incredibly. We are looking for founders who are relentless. We don't want founders who are here for just a short play,” said Pareen Lathia, Co-founder, Buidlers Tribe speaking about the demo day at Unfold.
Unfold saw a healthy distribution among different sectors for the demo day applications with solutions involving NFT, DAO tooling, and creators economy seeing the most number of applications.
For builders and developers, Unfold also featured a hackathon as a part of the event where they solved real-world problems and got rewarded for the same.
Aniket Raj, Community Lead, Devfolio who launched the hackathon said, “The Unfold Hackathon will be India’s largest IRL multichain hackathon, with more than $60,000 worth of bounties,” he said.
What's in store for leading blockchains?
With blockchain technology expanding its scope and dimensions, a session featuring Uri Kolodny, CEO, Starkware; Illia Polosukhin, Co-founder, NEAR; and Sandeep Nailwal, Co-founder, Polygon, deep-dived into innovations expected from different blockchains, the associated trade-offs, opportunities, and challenges.
“My personal goal and mission is to bring Web3 to the masses. And I believe that the masses will come when the giants of Web2 start building Web3 applications,” said Sandeep.
“With the next layers of scalability that’s being launched, we should see the next billions of users come onboard,” he added.
“Beyond leading their companies, Web3 founders need to work on community and be the glue in the ecosystem. Openness is a key trait of Web3 and it should reflect in the attitude of Web3 founders as well,” said Illia.
Web3 investing thesis and emerging trends
The conference also featured a specially curated investor panel who discussed their Web3 investing thesis and emerging trends. “What we really need now is for blockchains to scale faster, better, and cheaper. We also need tooling and infrastructure that allows developers to move from Web2 to Web3 more effortlessly,” said Hemant Mohapatra, Partner, Lightspeed.
“Low cost and scalability is a great lens to have when you’re building for the Web3 space. Polygon followed this closely and it's clear to see what attracted us to them,” added Shailesh Lakhani, Managing Director, Sequoia Capital.
Puneet Kumar, Managing Director, Steadview Capital said that he was excited about intra solutions, tools and infrastructure, when it came to first principles.
“We’re excited about the adoption of Web3 in institutions,” said Vaas Bhaskar, Principal, Elevation Capital. People have moved in very decisively, and what that translates to, for us, is a variety of real-world use cases and on-ground visibility that expands the opportunity,” he added.
Building Web3 from India
The evening ended on a lighter note with a panel led by Tanmay Bhat, Comedian, Youtuber, Investor, and Web3 founder.
With India expected to have both the largest number of retail crypto customers and the largest number of Web3 developers in the world, the panellists spoke about the opportunity, challenges, and playbooks for competing in the global arena.
“There are Web3 enthusiasts coming from beyond Tier I cities in India, now. We have a lot of hunger to succeed and make a difference in the world, and that’s great for us as a Web3 nation,” said Priyeshu, CEO, Router Protocol.
Building on what Priyeshu said, Yeshu Agarwal, Co-founder and CTO, Transak added, “There many Web3 developers, but there aren’t too many non-technical Web3 roles yet - and that needs to change, if we want to see more unicorns from India.”
Edul Patel, Co-founder and CEO, Mudrex, acknowledged the sweeping change of opinion among the developer community and society at large on crypto, “People are no longer afraid of telling their parents that they are working with crypto,” he added on a lighter note.
Unfold 2022 Hackathon
Themed ‘innovation and technological neutrality in Web3’ as a part of Unfold 2022 event, the hackathon saw 250 Web3 developers as participants in 100+ teams, 86 project submissions, and over $60,000 in bounties distributed to the winners sponsored by 13 leading global Web3 companies, making it one of the biggest in the history of Web3 hackathons.
Created in partnership with hackathon expert Devfolio, it brought together the entire Web3 ecosystem. Registrations for the hackathon started in early August and over 5000 applications were received from across India. The objective was to bring the best developers with real-world solutions to Web3 use cases.