As decentralized finance (DeFi) expands and new tokens are created, an ever-growing web of platforms and technologies has emerged for monitoring and working with cryptocurrency. Decentralized technology offers endless opportunities for innovation and wealth generation, but if navigating it is too complex, many people are excluded.
The Zerion platform aims to simplify the situation by consolidating everything needed to manage, track, store, borrow, buy, and sell crypto. In this way, Zerion hopes to not only facilitate cryptocurrency trading, but also render the involved technology accessible to everyone, increasing interaction and opportunity.
What Is Zerion?
Zerion is a DeFi aggregator for cryptocurrency investors that was founded in 2016 as a simplified solution for tracking and managing ERC-20 tokens. The co-founders realized that many investors felt overwhelmed by cryptocurrency’s complexity, often choosing centralized platforms for convenience or avoiding crypto altogether.
To address this, Zerion’s creators developed a user-friendly interface that brings together over 60 DeFi protocols and is accessible via both web and app versions. This means that investors can use Zerion for all their crypto needs, and consequently can save on time and gas fees. Zerion’s business model keeps the platform free to use, and only charges for added-value services such as advanced investing tools or exclusive DeFi content. In the future, however, the additional access to DeFi that is offered through Zerion’s DeFi SDK system may be monetized to create a business-to-business (B2B) service.
What Does Zerion do?
Zerion’s goal is to create a platform where any crypto-related action can be performed transparently, securely, and with ease in one place. Users can create a profile within minutes and do not need to provide any personal information. They can then link multiple wallets to the site, while never giving up control of their keys or their assets. The site offers the following basic features:
- Live price charts and information for over 50 cryptocurrencies and 13 fiat currencies
- A detailed list of all the trending and falling investments
- Access to the top liquidity pools and borrowing protocols on the market
Additionally, users can easily view and access all of their cryptocurrency, allowing for simple trading and management.
Once a wallet is linked, Zerion provides various functions via the following portals on its interface:
- History: Shows a detailed history of all of the user’s transactions. For a fee, this portal also provides access to TokenTax tax calculation services.
- Invest: Includes all the information an investor needs when choosing where to invest. The involved functions are also very transparent, showing rates, fees, and how much the investor will receive in both crypto and fiat currencies. Invest has a couple of subsections:
- Market: Offers an overview of every DeFi token’s performance with price charts and the like — similar to CoinMarketCap. Using this function, investors can purchase Ethereum-based assets or stablecoins. Additionally, to reduce fees, the system automatically connects to all DeFi exchanges and selects the one with the best rate, even splitting the order across multiple exchanges if needed.
- Top Losers/Top Gainers: Highlights trending and failing assets and protocols, including token rewards from yield farming, token sets, and liquidity pools. In this way, Zerion can offer the investor more opportunities and minimize prerequisite groundwork.
- NFTs: Allows the user to see their Non-fungible tokens (NFTs). These can represent artwork, collectibles, memorabilia, and personal data, as well as gaming characters, digital identities, and certificates.
- Exchange: Allows users to quickly exchange tokens and helps users choose the exchange with the best rates.
- Pools: Allows users to add liquidity to any liquidity pool in order to earn rewards through trading fees. Highlighted information includes the top liquidity pools (with detailed price graphs, potential earnings, and information), the user’s investments there, and what they have earned or lost. They can then add or remove assets from these pools directly through Zerion, rather than spending time visiting each asset’s site. Additional information is also given, including fees, minimum returns, and slippage.
- Save: A place to store assets for lending or earning interest. It also shows the available tokens and interest rates to help the user make investment decisions.
- Borrow: Allows the investor to take out collateralized loans, which are carried out through protocols such as Aave, Maker, and Compound. Loans are a great money-making tool, as they enable investors to borrow assets, such as DAI or USDC, against the collateral locked up in the loan, until the assets are repaid.
A look at Zerion’s easy-to-use interface (Source: Zerion.io)
Who Is Behind Zerion?
Zerion was founded in 2016 by Evgeny Yurtaev, Vadim Koleoshkin (COO), and Alexey Bashklykov (CTO). The trio has worked on everything from smart contract development and tokenized funds to blockchain games, but ultimately it was their interest in blockchain-based finance that brought them together. The three met while participating in hackathons and blockchain projects.
During Zerion’s first round of seed funding, it raised $2 million. The platform has traded over $750 million in assets (as of June 2021) and has over 200 thousand monthly active users.
What Downsides Does Zerion Involve?
Zerion is bringing DeFi to the masses, but as with any new technology, it does still have some downsides to address:
- As with most DeFi exchanges, Zerion is unregulated. However, no criminal activity has ever been discovered on the exchange.
- It is impossible to explore Zerion’s full range of features without first linking a wallet, as these options remain hidden until then. This can turn away hesitant newcomers who want to look around before getting involved.
- Despite its efforts to be user-friendly, Zerion can still intimidate crypto novices. The interface is clear and well-organized, but there is not much information introducing the concepts behind each investment opportunity. The user must proactively do groundwork and research first, which can be done through Zerion’s help center, blog, or online.
Zerion tries to make cryptocurrency more accessible through its blog and tutorials. (Source: Zerion.io)
Who Is Zerion’s Biggest Competitor?
The other large player in DeFi aggregators for cryptocurrency investors is Zapper.fi. The two are quite similar, both aiming to simplify DeFi investments and offer a single gateway to most DeFi protocols (though Zerion currently supports over 60 to Zapper’s 54). However, due to some specific features, crypto traders tend to have a preference between the two depending on their needs.
The key difference between these two platforms lies in their specialty offerings. Zerion aims to incorporate all aspects of DeFi investing into its platform, targeting anyone looking to explore what’s on offer. Zapper, despite also offering these options, has particularly focused on liquidity pools, and thus predominantly attracts these investors. That said, Zerion claims to offer the lowest gas fees in the sector. Ultimately, the two are very similar and have a similar vision, aiming to attract more people to the DeFi space by making it as user-friendly and simple as possible. Which one a user chooses, then, will be based on gas fees and how much they like the interface.
What Does Zerion’s Future Look Like?
Currently ranked as one of the top DeFi aggregators, Zerion looks set to stay. Today, it is used in over 150 countries in 10 languages, and has a user base exceeding 200,000 monthly active users — an increase of 276% since July 2020. Additionally, it is making headway among women, a demographic that is less active in the market. The platform has a gender split of 80/20, up from 90/10 just six months ago. Finally, it serves a wide range of investors, from newbies to veterans, meaning that it can serve the whole market.
All of this points to growth in progress, but also shows space to grow further, especially since Zerion’s median trade value is currently only $1,000. Zerion primarily attracts users through new protocol integrations, with the userbase from these protocols often following in the knowledge that they don’t lose anything but gain access to many other opportunities. These protocols are mainly within the DeFi sphere, and DeFi is a booming business. The total amount locked in DeFi has steadily risen from $30 billion in January 2021 to $51 billion in April, and to $80 billion in August. Additionally, as new DeFi tokens are listed, many are seeing huge success. Zerion’s possibility for growth with DeFi is therefore enormous. If Zerion continues to capture the market, then the platform’s future could be very bright indeed.
Zerion is making a complicated investment field simpler, thereby encouraging more people to get involved in crypto investing. The platform’s users appreciate having a one-stop shop for checking everything from values and rates to trending investments and liquidity pool rewards. The platform’s accessibility is enhanced through its simple interface and user-friendly features, such as its live chat support, tutorials, and multilingual phone app.
Overall, Zerion is a useful tool that is expected to keep increasing the number of DeFi investors. If it continues to integrate the right protocols and monitor investors’ needs, as well as fend off the competition, Zerion could become everyone’s DeFi aggregator.