StarkWare, the developers behind StarkNet (STRK), Ethereum Layer 2 native creation, have announced a significant delay. Token accessibility for StarkNet has been postponed by over five months, with the new date set for April 2024.
Notably, the rescheduled unlock date has been officially shifted to April 15, 2024. This marks a significant departure from the initial release date, which was originally slated for November 29, 2023.
Furthermore, this change was documented in a transaction related to one of StarkWare’s token-locking mechanism contracts. Moreover, Etherscan, a prominent blockchain explorer, verified this adjustment on a recent Sunday.
Moreover, when addressing this delay, a spokesperson from StarkWare stated to The Block: “Our primary focus remains on advancing the technological infrastructure. We are continually updating our roadmap as necessary, which includes adjustments to the lockup schedule.”
Details and Implications of StarkWare’s STRK Token Delay
However, the exact number of tokens impacted by this delay remains undisclosed at present. The total supply of STRK tokens stands at ten billion, and currently, STRK is not tradable. It is worth noting that the initial batch of unlocked tokens belongs to core contributors, early supporters of the StarkWare ecosystem, and StarkWare employees.
Notably, these tokens are not accessible to the general public, according to an insider familiar with the matter who spoke to The Block. The delay of the first token unlocks does not necessarily imply a corresponding delay for subsequent unlocks.
These two events are not inherently linked, according to the same source. StarkWare introduced the STRK token to the Ethereum network in November 2022, following an announcement made in July 2022 regarding their plans to issue a proprietary token.
Consequently, StarkWare declared that the STRK tokens allocated to shareholders, employees, and independent software developers would be locked for a four-year period, with a gradual release schedule commencing after one year, which would have been November 2023.
StarkWare’s STRK Token and Its Role in Ethereum Layer 2 Scaling
In the previous November, the Starknet Foundation was established, with 50.1% of the overall STRK token supply allocated to fulfill StarkNet’s decentralization proposal. The STRK token has diverse utility, including covering transaction fees, participating in governance, and staking on the StarkNet network.
Subsequently, in May 2022, StarkWare accomplished an impressive milestone, securing a valuation of $8 billion. This achievement came on the heels of a highly successful $100 million Series D funding round, which saw participation from leading investors such as Greenoaks Capital and Coatue.
The project, founded back in 2017, centers around two core products. The first is StarkEx, a specialized Ethereum scaling engine with limited accessibility. The second is StarkNet, an open and decentralized ZK-rollup platform that simplifies the deployment of autonomous smart contracts.
StarkWare’s Impact on Ethereum Scaling and Its Connection to Three Arrows Capital’s Bankruptcy
Primarily, the aim of Ethereum scaling networks is to augment the network’s transaction capacity while reducing gas fees. StarkWare’s technology has been adopted by various cryptocurrency projects, including Sorare and Immutable.
Although, once a prominent crypto hedge fund, Three Arrows Capital (3AC) has faced bankruptcy. In the midst of this financial turmoil, StarkWare counted 3AC among its investors.
Additionally, as part of the bankruptcy proceedings, Teneo, serving as 3AC’s liquidator, took over control of 3AC’s StarkWare tokens. This transition occurred in December of the preceding year and followed the terms outlined in the original agreement.
Conversely, 3AC had previously invested in StarkWare’s $75 million Series B round and the subsequent $50 million Series C round. The delay in the STRK unlock schedule may potentially impact Teneo’s asset recovery process.