5 non-DeFi Projects That Made Significant Progress in 2020 (And Why You Should Pay Attention to Them)

5 non-DeFi Projects That Made Significant Progress in 2020 (And Why You Should Pay Attention to Them)

By Ravir3z | MuchoGraph | 28 Aug 2020

With the extraordinary rise of DeFi taking over the entire cryptocurrency industry, there is little space for non-DeFi projects to make any headlines. Today, crypto heads are concerned with finding the next DeFi project that they can farm with the hopes of long-lasting high APR. 

However, it is essential to remember that everything in this game occurs in cycles. Hype comes and goes in phases, and it is inevitable that this DeFi cycle will eventually question down. 

Yes, right now, it is DeFi Season. Everybody has forgotten about projects that aren’t related to DeFi or the Ethereum network in some way. However, this will end one day, and the crypto world will start to move back into non-DeFi projects once again.

At this point, projects that managed to survive the 2017/18 crypto winter and continued to build until today will steal the show in the next “non” DeFi season as the stampede will shift its perspective back into projects that have been in development for years.

Here is a list of 5 non-DeFi projects that have continued to make substantial progress in 2020 and are likely to return to the headlines once the DeFi race finishes.

1. Power Ledger - $POWR



Power Ledger is a blockchain-based project that allows users to monetize surplus solar energy generated from solar panel systems. It was founded in 2016 and went on to raise over $13 million in its 2017 ICO. The platform allows users to access cheaper, cleaner, and more sustainable energy if they are near located to somebody who is selling on Power Ledger. 

It can be considered a P2P energy market palace as users sell energy directly to each other without selling it back to the energy grid.

The entire platform offers the following products;

  1. xGrid - Buy/Sell energy in the P2P market place.
  2. uGrid - Buy/Sell energy on a local power grid (such as an apartment block or office complex)
  3. Virtual Power Plant - As a series of consumer-generated solar energy and battery systems that pool stored energy. It is fed back onto the grid at peak times to maximize returns.

A quick rundown of what they have done in 2020;

  • January 13th - Power Ledger purchased a 250kW solar system from Perdaman Advanced Energy under a 20-year Power Purchase Agreement. This purchase was conducted to launch the energy auditing system. LINK
  • January 29th - Power Ledger team up with M-RETS to launch a Renewable Energy Certificate (REC) marketplace in the United States. The M-RETS system allows energy to be tracked from renewable energy sources, ensuring environmentally friendly energy. LINK
  • February 6th - Power Ledger secured a contract with Italy’s largest electricity utility producers, Alepria SpA. This contract will see 280,000 SpA customers trialing the Power Ledger energy trading products. LINK
  • April 1st - Power Leger teamed up with ekWateur to allow customers to choose what type of renewable energy they would like to purchase. LINK
  • April 21st - Power Ledger signed with a residential project developer for solar energy trading throughout Western Australia. The deal involves a 3-year contract in which the Power Ledger platform will be installed across ten different residential developments. LINK
  • May 25th - Power Ledger signed a partnership with Thai Digital Energy Development (and the Thai Government’s PEA and BCPG) to introduce blockchain-based digital energy into Thailand. The partnership will see the introduction of TraceX REC in Thailand during 2020. LINK
  • August 25th - The TraceX REC mentioned above comes into action. LINK

Also, things are real

2. FTX - $FTT



FTX, founded in 2018 and launched in May 2019, is a rapidly growing cryptocurrency derivatives exchange that allows users to trade advanced financial tools. It is a powerful trading platform that is built by traders for professional trading firms to use. 

Along with regular spot trading, the exchange offers margin trading in a range of different cryptocurrencies, allowing traders to short altcoins. It also has up to 101x leverage to provide to traders. In addition to this, the exchange even accepts fiat deposits (USD, EUR, GBP, CAD, and AUD) as an easily accessible on-ramp.

A quick rundown of what they have done in 2020;

  • The exchange was trading around $1 million per day in April. By late August, the exchange is now facilitating $1 billion per day. LINK
  • Its CEO, Sam Bankman-Fried, is a top trader whos firm, Alameda Research, is in the top5 traders on the BitMex leaderboard. LINK
  • February 2020 - FTX introduces election markets into their platform to trade the 2020 presidential election outcome. LINK
  • April 2020 - FTX announced a partnership and investment from Binance. The two CEOs are pretty good friends, which is a good thing for FTX. LINK
  • August 2020 - FTX acquired Blockfolio, the cryptocurrency portfolio tracking app with 6M users, for $150 million. LINK

On a side note, FTX CEO reminds me of Elon Musk - a workaholic that spends most of the time in his office (or at least in its early days). Just take a look at this: 

3. Aragon - $ANT



Aragon is the leading dApp on Ethereum that allows people to create and manage Decentralized Autonomous Organizations (DAOs). This can be any type of organization in which people need to meet, cast votes, hold funds, elect leaders, and conduct every single administrative process you could imagine that an organization would require. After creating a DAO on Aragon, members of that organization can easily manage funds and have a transparent log of how all finances are spent. 

Think of it as a SaaS for DAOs.

In addition to this, the DAO allows owners to provide equity, pay employees and shareholders, vote on governance decisions in the organization, raise funds, and share different access levels to manage the DAO.

The platform is designed to be as easy-to-use as possible and provides a range of presets for Organizations to quickly get set up in one click. It is also modular, so different components can be added or removed depending on the organization’s specific requirements.

One of the primary reasons I believe Aragon is likely to explode is the fact that all the DeFi platforms (and standard blockchain projects) will all need a place to manage their governance proposals. Rather than creating their own voting systems, these blockchain platforms can easily use Aragon to facilitate any governance protocols. Read more about this idea in this post.

A quick rundown of what they have done in 2020;

  • January - ANT gets listed on Kyber Network - adding another DeFi exchange alongside Uniswap. LINK
  • February 10th - Aragon launched Aragon Court, the first-ever online-based court to handle disputes in DAOs. Aragon Court is a digital jurisdiction that is borderless. It lets over 200 jurors handle disputes within DAOs to resolve any situations that might arise. LINK
  • February 19 - Billionaire Tim Draper put $1M into Aragon LINK
  • March 26th - ANY listed on Coinbase Custody (it's a big deal), allowing users to store ANT in the professional-grade storage safely. LINK
  • April 2nd - Aragon rebranded its identity with a new logo and color palette to keep in-line with its ethos. LINK
  • July 2nd - Aragon joined the Messari Disclosures Registry, a trusted repository for token holders to read factual information to promote ANT transparency. LINK
  • July 21st - Aragon introduces a liquidity rewards program to promote deep liquidity within ANT. The rewards program lasted 30-days in which 50,000 ANT were distributed for Liquidity Providers on the ANT/ETH Uniswap V2 pool. LINK
  • August 5th - To keep up with the growing demand from DEFI projects creating DAOs Aragon released an “Aragon Experts” page to help facilitate users in creating DAOs. LINK
  • August 21st - Aragon creates another liquidity reward program for Liquidity Providers on Balancer with the rewards being calculated off-chain. In total, 25,000 ANT will be distributed over the 28 days. LINK

Tim Draper and Chris Burniske know what they are talking about:

4. Basic Attention Token - $BAT



Basic Attention Token is a digital advertising token that is used inside the Brave browser. Brave is a privacy-focused web-browser that blocks all cookies, advertisements, and third-party trackers by default. What is excellent about Brave is that it is already much faster than its competitors, such as Google Chrome and Safari. Oh, I forgot to mention that Brave was created by the guy who made Mozilla Firefox and the javascript programming language - Brendan Eich.

Worth mentioning that its ICO sold out in just 30 seconds raising $15M. Pretty impressive. 

Together with the Brave browser, BAT is attempting to revolutionize the online advertising ecosystem in which currently just a small handful of people make a profit.

Users of Brave are compensated in BAT when they view advertisements that are pushed by the Brave browser. This way, users are paid for their attention on the platform and are not exploited by major advertising companies that never pay users a dime. 

A quick rundown of what they have done in 2020;

  • January 15th - Brave introduces sponsored images on the browser. These are branded background images that are displayed on the “new tabs” page in the browser. Since then, top companies such as eToro or Intel used it.  LINK
  • February 12th - Sponsored Images appear on all Brave platforms, including mobile devices. Users are automatically paid 70% of the advertising revenue when they opt into the Brave Rewards program. LINK
  • March 10th - Brave partners with TAP Network to allow Brave users to redeem BAT for real-reward rewards offered by merchants on the Tap Network. LINK
  • March 24 - Brave & Binance partnership LINK
  • July 9th - Brave partner with NYIAX to allow advertisers to connect with consumers that prioritize personal choice. LINK
  • July 13th - Travala.com, a crypto-friendly hotel booking service, announced that they would run a global campaign on the Brave Browser through Brave’s privacy-preserving ads. LINK 
  • August 28 - Partnership with Gemini Exchange - LINK

Brave & BAT are going after giants:


5. Origin Trail - $TRAC



Origin Trail is a blockchain-based supply chain platform designed to promote products’ transparency across the entire supply chain. It allows users to track where the raw materials were sourced in any product that uses the platform. With this, users can see the lifecycle of creating their product from the initial farming stage through to processing and distribution. 

For example, let’s say you were buying a bottle of wine. Using a QR code on the wine bottle, you can easily see where the grapes were sourced as the farmer would input the data when harvesting the grapes. Then as these grapes pass through each stage of the supply chain, the players within the chain will input their data accordingly. The user will be able to track where that wine was sourced and where it has been until it landed on the shelves.

This type of product tracking helps customers gain trust in the products they are buying and will never be duped into buying fake counterfeit products.

A quick rundown of what they have done in 2020;

  • March 13th - Origin Trail introduces a Food Data Market that incentives data sharing to contribute to sustainable supply chains. LINK
  • June 3rd - British Standard Institution releases a white paper on the use of Origin Trail. LINK
  • June 22ndJune 30th - Origin trail introduce Incentive program with Uniswap. LINK
  • July 20th - Partnership with GS1 LINK
  • July 24th - Trace Lavs joins innovation partnership for the Integrity of Organic Food Supply Chains. LINK

A few extras before 2020:


(nothing to see here, just origintrail with random company)

Tomasz Levak Origin Trail European Parlament

also not a big deal, just Tomaž Levak (CEO) introducing Origin Trail in European Parlament. 


Although it may be challenging to see with your FEEDS being totally dominated by the latest DeFi hype, it is apparent that the non-DeFi projects are still in full swing. Along the course of 2020, these projects have continued to amass a string of partnerships and have made significant improvements to their protocols and products.

Whilst you scroll through the DeFi headlines, keep in mind that the time for non-DeFi projects is still yet to come. It is best to get into the promising projects ahead of the pack while nobody is paying attention. 


In blockchain we trust


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