There are over hundreds of cryptocurrency exchanges. From decentralized exchanges to centralized ones. Many of these face regulatory and security issues that may prevent wishing participants to enter this space. Unizen has built a smart exchange ecosystem users can feel a sense of Zen while utilizing.
Unizen is a regulatory compliant hybrid centralized and decentralized exchange. Their mission is to be the first and biggest CeDeFi exchange, combining the functionalities of both first and third party centralized and decentralized exchanges. The ecosystem being built within Unizen will be used to aggregate trades and liquidity from all the exchange markets they are collaborating with. This unique approach to an exchange draws interest from retail traders thanks to having an aggregate market to find the most efficient process and prices between trades, and institutional demand for the large liquidity pools provided. The idea of innovative CeDeFi brings the best of both worlds, with the aspects of full ownership, data control and community driven decisions of decentralized finance, while still having strong security adhering to the regulations of traditional finance. Unizen also sees the wall holding back mass adoption within this industry due to the difficulties of stepping into this space. Their attempt to solve this is to build other exchange’s modules and UI’s into their exchange, while keeping the features of Unizen in every module, bringing every user an interface and experience they feel comfortable beginning with.
The Unizen team is also building the ZenX Incubator. The goal for the incubator will be to allow for decentralized start-ups to have the resources they need to build out their project, while assuring its compliance and ensuring that the start-up launch is made to be successful and making sure there is a clear roadmap and mission each project incubated will try to follow. Zen X Incubator will allow for a faster growing ecosystem along with ensuring the ecosystem is built from legitimate strong fundamental projects.
Unizen is a smart exchange with their token $ZCX built on the Ethereum blockchain. Unlike most exchanges, Unizen will be a smart exchange that aggregates other exchanges that are connected to their platform. Meaning the liquidity on Unizen would consist of multiple exchanges, from centralized exchanges such as FTX, Binance and Kucoin to decentralized exchanges such as Uniswap and Sifchain. Adding the components of both decentralized and centralized finance, Unizen is attempting to bring an exchange platform in which users can access both sides of finances, bringing a multi-chain DLT ecosystem.
There will be a Pro membership available on the Unizen exchange for $50 USDC which will give users access to institutional level analytics and interfaces for the optimal experience. The Pro integration will be automated once purchased through an NFT based authentication. As the team intends to be the universal and unified gateway for institutions and governments to access this market. As an exchange based product service with an exchange based token, Unizen has worked to ensure the users of the exchange along with holders of the exchange token are benefited for being a part of the network.
To keep the best interest of the users of the network, Unizen understands they have to take what the communities opinions into consideration. One of the biggest issues currently in crypto is the lack of exchanges with certain crypto assets, $ZCX being one of them. Unizen has decided to host a Tournament of Alt Coins, with the addition of their social sentiment indicator, the team can read statistics on which coins are being most requested onto exchanges. Users can support and directly influence the outcome of the tournament through providing positive sentiment and factually driven marketing on Twitter. The final round will last for 48 hours and the project with the highest sentiment score will win a free listing onto the Unizen CEX module with Binance shared liquidity. As the community will have a voice in deciding which crypto assets are added by educating others about a given project, this not only promotes the growth of other projects but Unizen through the tournaments.
The roadmap Unizen has laid for their smart exchange will separate them from the other exchanges on the market, from features such as aggregating cross chain and Binance shared liquidity, AI driven social sentiment indicators on markets, early access to projects incubated by Zen X Labs, competitive yield rates, unique staking mechanisms, and having a DEX and CEX module integrated and a governance DAO to decentralize the direction of the platform after the foundation is laid. Currently Unizen has already integrated Binance Cloud, Uniswap and Sifchain into their pool of aggregate trade liquidity providers, and plan to add more. These integrated modules will be available for users to customize to the users preference.
The team at Unizen also realizes another problem in crypto, being the difficulty for institutions and authoritative entities to enter the space, it would require compliant products and services along with a strong sense of security. Unizen has ensured this with the promise of audits from their partners on all projects before they are officially listed on to the exchange. While decentralized finance has given opportunities to many who are unbanked, it also poses potential flaws, some acting as a barrier for certain investors to join such as, higher usages resulting in higher fees negatively affecting adoption, ease of accessibility opens up doors for exploits such as money laundering and tax evasion. Unizen understands adding off chain features, KYC/AML alone would draw away current and potential clients as it takes away from the ethos of decentralized finances. With the customizable modules, users have the option to participate within the decentralized finance markets, while institutional users may be more comfortable using a centralized exchange module with verified assets and white glove services for managing certain clients assets.
As Unizen is an exchange, and similarly a community. The team plans to bring benefits for those in the community with means of rewards in a method similar to how certain equities will distribute dividends. As shareholders feel more incentivized to hold a stock if the stock is expected to payout a portion of their earnings as dividends. As tokens begin to list onto Unizen, some projects will allocate a portion of their tokens as a means of payment. Some or all of these tokens will be reallocated to existing stakers. The team has also set up a variety of blockchain nodes from multiple projects and will be distributing rewards to users that are staking to secure the network.
The Zen X Incubator will also allow for stakers to participate in seed sales for projects that have been incubated and are soon to make an official listing. There will also be benefits for clients with lower risk tolerances with the feature of offering competitive yields on stablecoins, additionally users can increase their rates of return by staking.
As Unizen is still a developing project the team is still continuing to add employees to their board. Sean Noga is the CEO of the team and is responsible for envisioning the idea of deep hybrid liquidity and combination of CeDeFi. Martin Granström, the CTO is responsible for managing the technical team along with design and implementation. With previous experiences of working as a CEO for his own startup GlacierHub and nearly 7 years at Netrounds.
The CBO of Unizen is James Taylor, James has long list of previous experience in the traditional finance industry from working with institutions such; Barclays Investment Bank from 2000–2006 working for FX sales for 5 years before being promoted to Director of FX for 2 more years of work. James then went on to work as the director of Deutsche Bank as the head of the hedge fund for 3 years. Eventually James began his career in North American financial institutions, with almost 8 years at JPMorgan as the executive director of fixed income markets and rates execution. Most recently, James also worked as the global head of foreign exchange at BNY Mellon from 2017–2021 before he eventually joined the Unizen team in June of 2021.
The CMO, Brandon Dallmann is responsible for the social networking and growth adoption of Unizen. With 9 years of previous experience at multiple trampoline startups. Along with 11 years of blockchain and social engineering experience before eventually joining a partner of Unizen, BlockUnify. Tom Sweeney, the COO, is also the current CEO of Jun Capital, another Unizen partner. Jun Capital works with emerging and established technology companies in securing equity and crypto investments.
Unizen has also gathered a team of advisors for the team and have found some reputable entities. Starting with initially adding Gilbert Verdian, the CEO of Quant Network. Gilbert has a plethora of work experience within blockchain and governments, from CSO and CTO of the HM Treasury, Security Management at HSBC, Security Lead at the Ministry of Justice in UK, CISO at Vocalink a Mastercard payment system, two years at Bank Of England in part of the Cybersecurity committee and many other accolades. Gilbert has also built many strong connections in his transition from working in traditional finance to the crypto world. These include being a member of the EU Blockchain Observatory and Forum group, board member for the Digital Pound Foundation, chair of DLT/1 and UK Standardization, along with being the founder of the ISO/TC307 standard, being the universal standard for blockchain.
Another one of their advisors is Rachid Ajaja, the founder and CEO of AllianceBlock. Prior to working in the crypto space, Rachid had previously worked at Barclays Investment Bank as a quantitative analyst for 4 years. Rachid then went on to work at VINCI as a senior AI research analyst. VINCI is a company that is trying to disrupt the industry with smart infrastructure through machine learning and blockchain technology.
Ian Sobieski will also join the Unizen board of advisors, Ian has been working as the managing director for Band Of Angels venture fund since 1996. Band of Angels is Silicon Valley’s oldest seed funding organization which started up in 1994. The angel investing firm has since invested approximately $250 million into start-up companies. Ian has played a significant role in his time with the fund with being the decision maker for over 120 seed investments along with serving on over 20 boards of directors. Recently, the most recent addition of advisors added to the team was Nicholas Racz. Nicholas specializes in managing data for decentralized projects specifically within Self Sovereign Identities and KYC which will be essential for following regulations within certain jurisdictions.
The tokenomics around Unizen are heavily user incentivized, from key services such as Dynamic Multi Asset Staking (DMAS), and Dynamic Yield Savings Accounts (DYSA). As Unizen is an exchange and $ZCX is the exchange token, some of the utility $ZCX is responsible for within the exchange includes, reduced trading fees paid in $ZCX, governance on the exchange with voting rights to token listings, augmentation of the roadmap, customization of Unizens UI, and direct access to early access investment rounds in projects within Zen X Incubator. Unizen will also provide products which incentivizes users to buy and hold $ZCX. DMAS will be one of the key services Unizen provides, by locking up $ZCX tokens, users are able to collect rewards from the nodes from various projects Unizen runs along with tokens from projects that are utilizing the Zen X Incubator and portions of the payments from teams paid listings onto Unizen.
Essentially, users on Unizen will stake their tokens to secure the Unizen ecosystem, while the team rewards users back with crypto assets that are supported by the Unizen team. In a hypothetical situation with DMAS, users would stake their $ZCX and in return, receive rewards from emerging projects within the Zen X Incubator from potentially innovative projects such as Dimitra and Cirus. While also being rewarded from the nodes the team runs with rewards ranging from Bitcoin, Ethereum to smaller capped projects which they run nodes for such as AllianceBlock and Quant Network.
The latter primary service Unizen is to offer, DYSA, where Unizen will be offering competitive yields for stablecoins. Unizen aims to keep rates competitive with current industry titans such as BlockFi and Celsius. There will be various tiers for DYSA, with higher tiers offering higher yield, users can achieve these higher yields by locking up more $ZCX. As stablecoins are coins pegged to the US dollar, users don’t face any risk in potential losses. Users can comfortably allocate their savings into their stablecoins onto Unizen for higher yields than the near nonexistent rates traditional banks offer their clients.
There are a total of 1 billion $ZCX tokens, with a current circulating supply of 33.75 million. Though the ratio of total supply to circulating supply is rather unconventional and shows potential risk on the surface, Unizen has worked to plot a plan that not only protects investors but won’t oversaturate the market with an excess supply. 30% of the total supply will likely never see circulation, as these 300 million $ZCX will be locked up for security insurance in the unlikely outcome of a successful exchange hack, the reserve tokens will provide liquidity to the Unizen DAO upon its future creation. 20% of the total supply will also go towards the Unizen team for new hires and the company expenses, though the tokens will have lock and monthly vesting periods. The Unizen foundation will also have 285 million tokens locked, which will be utilized for Incubator grants, extra liquidity, marketing and the growth of the ecosystem. Unizen has decided, rather than manually releasing more tokens into circulation, to automate the process and release $ZCX into the ecosystem according to the volume traded in order to prevent unnecessary volatile price fluctuations.
Unizen has also decided to implement a deflationary approach into their tokenomics with $ZCX being burnt for every paid listing on the Unizen CEX module, the team will also be market buying $ZCX to burn throughout the year with a percentage of their profits. The fees for the Pro membership will then be converted into $ZCX and burnt.
While Unizen will be unofficially “partnered” with countless projects due to the nature of exchanges. Unizen has partnered with companies they believe to benefit them best, with some of these companies being associated with members of the Unizen team. Some of the primary partners of Unizen will involve regulators to ensure compliance, experienced angel investing and venture capitalist firms to pick out potential within lists of projects wishing to utilize the Zen X Incubator, along with tech experts that are capable of accelerating and optimizing the growth of these potential projects. These partnerships include Jun Capital and BlockUnify, both are essentially a venture capitalist firm that invests in early technology startups while providing advisory.
LunarCrush has partnered with Unizen and will be responsible for the Social Sentiment Indicator on the exchange. LunarCrush describes itself as a “social listening for crypto”. Their website offers insights on how coins are doing in terms of exposure and mentions on social media, while showing users that are the strongest supporters of said projects. While LunarCrush is still fairly underground, having a sentiment indicator will improve the comfortability and experience of users and potentially give LunarCrush more exposure towards other crypto traders.
Aside from unofficial partnerships due to listings onto their exchange, Unizen as also partnered with several crypto companies. Initially, Chainlink oracles will be integrated in order to get accurate and tamper proof price information on crypto assets. As Chainlink price feeds are the most widely used with DeFi and rapidly increasing in CeFi to determine the live prices of crypto assets.
As if having Gilbert and Rachid on the board of advisors wasn’t enough, Unizen is also partnered with their advisors companies, Quant Network and AllianceBlock respectively. Currently a gateway interface is being built between Unizen and Overledger Network. Overledger is the operating system Quant has built and allows for universal interoperability between all sources of data. The gateway will allow for compliant, deep liquidity through regulated pathways for financial institutions, authoritarians and governments into the ecosystem. Zen X Incubator will also be responsible for supporting new mDapps that are developing on Overledger.
AllianceBlock, Rachid’s project, will also be partnered with Unizen with some of the key features being integrating AllianceBlock’s DeFi terminal as one of their first modules. Unizen will also be leveraging AllianceBlock’s API endpoints to enable optional and trustless KYC to their native and third party modules. This partnership will also enable users on Unizen to participate in SSLP (Single Sided Liquidity Providing) in which users stake their $ZCX tokens and receive dual pair liquidity rewards.
From their discipline on remaining compliant, drawing the interest of institutions and governments that wish to partake in this space, to their Zen X Incubator attracting startup companies to build out innovative projects, to the heavily user focused interfaces and experience they are building with the social sentiment indicators along with lucrative products such as DMAS and DYSA attracting both long term holders and short term traders.
Once Unizen has achieved the steps within their roadmap, new users will likely begin flocking into the ecosystem out of curiosity and realize the unique features Unizen has implemented. With options to lock up tokens towards DMAS and DYSA, users likely would feel more inclined to participate in this ecosystem. Institutions will enter this space and will require an exchange that fits their needs of security, regulations, convenience and accessibility. Unizen offers all those with their audits and legal advisors, trustless KYC, deep hybrid liquidity along with Unizen Pro being designed for institutional grade use and the options to switch between CEX and DEX modules, institutional investors can feel safe trading with large amounts of capital without the worry of lack of liquidity, or compliance issues.
While the Zen X Incubator will bring in countless potential startups and help grow the overall Unizen ecosystem, it could also potentially accelerate the overall growth of the crypto and digital asset space depending on the missions of the projects to be incubated. DMAS will draw in both retail and institutions to stake $ZCX for passive income distributed in a variety of crypto assets with some being small incubated projects that could potentially grow to being industry giants in the space. DYSA will further push the popular statement in crypto to “Be your own bank”, as users will now have the option to earn competitive yields on risk free stablecoins for passive income, rather than leaving money in a “high yield” savings account of 0–1% or bonds which both are giving negative real yield due to their abysmal rates.
Unizen has set itself up to be the face of CeDeFi and one of the frontrunners for institutions and governments to dive into the crypto space without having to jump between countless apps and chains. As most large exchanges are currently valued within hundreds of billions with the crypto space growing rapidly. As Unizen is trying to set itself up as the smart exchange for aggregation along with all their other key features such as their incubators, compliance and rewards systems, its very possible Unizen will draw audiences from other exchanges into theirs and eventually larger entities due to their superior benefits from current exchanges.
As most large current exchanges such as Coinbase and Binance are valued around the low hundreds of billions while the entire crypto space is still growing rapidly, it is possible Unizen joins Coinbase and Binance as a leader in this industry, while potentially even surpassing them given the customizable options, and user experiences providing an easier learning curve for future retail and institutions. Unizen has built a strong team all around from tokenomics, to compliance to utility to ensure they capture as much of future enterprise and retail investors that will flow into this space.
*None of the information listed is financial or investment advice and should only be taken as entertainment or educational as I’m not a financial advisor*
Hey, thanks for taking the time to read my work. I’m your average 20 year old, currently in school for Economics and Finance. Some of my hobbies consist of sports, working out and staring at price charts.
I initially began interested in the crypto space after frustrations with legacy markets. From the second I read about the Ethereum ecosystem, I fell in love. An entire ecosystem built on one platform that anybody can access? Unheard of, until now.
With how fast this space is developing, I try and find projects within this industry that show promise and potential to disrupt our modern world. All this fundamental analysis not only helps me better understand these projects better, but hopefully gives you guys some newfound information!
If there are any projects you’d wish to suggest me take a look into, I’m always available on Twitter