For those that missed it, Covalent CEO Ganesh Swami and Reef CEO Denko Mancheski held a joint AMA to discuss the product integration and the future prospects of the partnership. Thanks for hosting us Reef!
Reef Admin: Could you please introduce yourself Ganesh and tell us a little about yourself, how to got into Crypto, how you started with Covalent?
Ganesh: Yeah sure, I’m a physicist by training and have been in the data space for over a decade. My entry into crypto was quite accidental, to be honest. I participated in a hackathon and left with the winning prize and decided to start a company around that. That hack is Covalent.
Covalent starts with the foresight that transparency is crucial for this industry to reach mass adoption and fully realize the potential of crypto. That clarity and futuristic outlook gave us the strength to continue grinding through the bear market.
Reef Admin: Haha really? Your entry in the Crypto was accidental but you ended up building a successful project - Covalent. That's amazing! Covalent is described as the data powering the DeFi economy. How would you simplify and describe this for the Reef Community?
Ganesh: Covalent provides a unified API to pull out critical DeFi data locked up on the blockchain. Blockchain data is completely open and public (everything can be seen on Etherscan, for example) - but we pull out data that’s not even visible on Etherscan.
This data can then be used as raw materials to return balances, positions, transaction activity with a wide variety of use-cases: wallets, exchanges, custodians, validators, etc.
Denko: Yeah, also the way they clean up the data + the format in which it is stored is super helpful, not to mention its extremely fast 😄.
Reef Admin: That sounds very unique and interesting, I'm sure that our community would love to learn more about Covalent. Could you enlighten us a little about the milestones you’ve reached so far with Covalent?
Ganesh: Absolutely, happy to share! We reached an inflection point in 2020. We started the year with 0 customers, no traction and just 2 team members. Then DeFi summer hit - we now have over 40 projects building on Covalent, became profitable and raised a sizable private round to build the future of data analytics. We have also been able to attract stellar talent to the project and we are now 15 people strong.
We have some exciting, exciting announcements to make in the coming weeks. Let’s say “cross-chain” and I’ll leave it at that. 😎
Reef Admin: Wow! Covalent has achieved so many good things in such a short period of time and it seems like you have more interesting things coming up! I'm eagerly waiting to see your upcoming news. Covalent aims to provide the richest and most robust data infrastructure for the entire blockchain ecosystem. What is your plan to achieve this?
Ganesh: Great question!
We have a fundamentally different architecture and philosophy when it comes to extract data from blockchains. 1) Most projects just scrape blockchain data and show you blocks/transactions and other high-level stuff. That IMHO is not very useful. 2) Other projects also require an engineer to write custom code for extract. That again IMHO is not very scalable.
Covalent is the only project to my knowledge to re-execute every single blockchain transaction for the genesis block and capture all internal state data. This took a long time - about 8 months. As a result of this approach, our data is terabytes and billions of rows. Totally in the realm of BIG DATA.
Secondly, we have a sophisticated “no-code” approach of automatically understanding blockchain data. As a result, most of our customers are non-technical and are still able to accomplish their data-related tasks.
Reef Admin: Thanks for the brief answer! It's definitely very helpful. My last question... It’s been over a month that Covalent and Reef have been partners. How has that been going so far and what else are you planning to ease user experience? Is there any plan to expand this partnership further?
Denko: Actually in the background Reef is using certain data feed that Covalent provides. As you know we are further processing this data to extract metrics which we combine in order to derive risk levels for certain DeFi activities. Then the users get a proposed basket through the smart management component
So Covalent is an important infrastructural component that we are utilizing in the background. We also have plans to expand this partnership even further and host different competitions to attract more data scientists in the crypto landscape
Ganesh: Covalent is delighted to partner with Reef. From day one, we’ve been impressed by the caliber of their talent. There are only 3 teams that share a Slack channel with Covalent and Reef is one of them. Shows you how important this partnership is to us.
We see Reef as a critical, strategic partner in 2021 and beyond. On the marketing side, as data focussed companies, we will be launching competitions in the future.
There’s a lot going on behind the scenes on the product side, so will definitely share that publically when the time’s right.
Reef is the first cross-chain DeFi operating system built on Polkadot. With a seamless user interface, Reef offers its users a smart liquidity aggregator and yield engine that enables access to liquidity from both CEXes and DEXes while offering smart lending, borrowing, staking, mining through AI-driven personalized baskets.