“Our driving motivation in creating Zen is the belief that people have a right to own their financial assets, and we feel a responsibility to provide people with the necessary tools to empower themselves,” – Adam Perlow, CEO of Zen Protocol
Zen Protocol is essentially blockchain built for finance.
Zen’s primary goal is to make secure, peer to peer finance possible on a public blockchain, removing the need for intermediaries such as banks and brokers.
Current financial systems are highly complex and centralized. While established people in the banking industry can typically deal with the massive amounts of paperwork, many businesses and individuals find those barriers to entry nearly impossible to overcome.
Zen allows anyone on the network to create and trade assets backed by collateral on a secure platform. The protocol provides users with an open marketplace for a variety of different financial instruments: options, futures, digital currencies, ETFs, exotics, etc.
Unlike Bitcoin, Zen Protocol can handle more than simply transactions on the blockchain.
The sidechain integration on the Zen Protocol network can take assets such as stocks, commodities, and even real estate into account. This makes it a fully featured financial system compared to other financial blockchain platforms.
Zen tokens are assets that can be held and transferred without running their issuing contracts. This goes beyond the usability from platforms which implement tokens as a second-layer protocol. With Zen, new assets are always usable by any existing or future contract.
Zen is fully decentralized, with their implementation using the .NET stack and the F* functional programming language to power contracts that are provably correct, and that never exhaust network resources.
Using the language ZF*, Zen makes advanced security techniques like formal verification natural to use.
People with Bitcoin or other cryptocurrencies can use Zen’s financial system without third parties or intermediaries.
Using proof-of-work, miners on the Zen network verify how much computation each contract requires before even running it. This allows Zen to work without a virtual machine or resource counter, ensuring contracts in the protocol are as fast as compiled system code.
Zen has a system in-place called “Multi Hash Mining” which distributes mining rewards to several hashing algorithms while giving holders of Zen token the power to vote on which hashing algorithms will receive the rewards.
The company believes that this approach will result in a fairer engagement between miners and token holders, with all participants incentivized to be involved in the ecosystem.
Scalability: Off-chain transactions and an active contract set makes the Zen Protocol network highly scalable.
Resilient incentive alignment: The Zen Blockchain is secured by multiple proof-of-work algorithms, with token-holder voting on the balance between them. This creates robust incentives for miners to deliver efficient, reliable security.
Useful real-world data: A cornerstone of any valuable use-case is connecting to real events and external sources of information. Zen’s solution allows for commercially viable data feeds.
Security: Zen contracts come with proofs, written in F*, that demonstrate they are free of errors and security vulnerabilities.
Bounded contracts: Miners know the cost of executing contracts before running them, enabling compiled contracts and a guarantee that transactions only enter the Blockchain when contracts fully, successfully execute
Oracles: Enable smart contracts to operate on real world data, which can then be used to arbitrate an agreement.
You can learn more about the technical aspects of Zen Protocol by going to their learn page.
Pamir Gelenbe: Investor in Kraken and Ledger companies
Ron Gross: Executive Director of Mastercoin Foundation, which created Omni
Ran Nussbaum: Managing partner of Pontifax Venture Capital, one of the top funds in Israel.
The token sale for Zen Protocol ended on December 24. They fundraised $46 million during their sale, meeting their goal 100%.
Some details on the distribution of Zen: during the genesis block, 20 million Zen tokens will be made available. 60% of the total goes to investors, 32.5% to the team, and 7.5%, goes into reserves. In total, only 100 million ZEN will ever be created.
The biggest question Zen Protocol brings up is are people ready to trust in a fully decentralized financial system?
Rather than having a bank or institution take care of your financial assets and transactions, you would essentially be allowing a secure, distributed ledger to handle your assets. Although ambitious, Zen’s goal of being the protocol in financial systems, removing any need for intermediaries, still has a ways to go before proving that a truly decentralized financial system like this will be viable. However we do believe that the technology behind Zen, as well as its unique approach can make it a viable long-term investment once mainnet is released.
Testnet was recently released on their site. You can download it here:
Read the Zen Protocol Whitepaper:
Read their Technical Paper:
Disclaimer: We are in no way associated with the Zen Protocol team. Neither is this meant to be financial advice. Whatever follows, just reflects our understanding of the project, and our personal opinion on its outlook. Always do your own research.