Bancor - project to build complete liquidity for ANY cryptocurrency


Hey all,

I was introducing this project to Bernard & Efi, and they recommend I post it here to see what the community thinks:

I’ve kept it under 3 minutes reading time. (this is about as complex & game changing as ETH itself, so 3 minutes to explain it all is something of a feat)

You ever find it weird how fast blockchain tech is growing, yet how little most of the world knows about it?

We’ve got projects working on decentralizing the computing power behind the whole internet, making it possible to create governments where every citizen’s vote on every issue can be counted, enabling IoT devices that can make their own transactions (like your autonomous car paying for it’s own charge at a charging station), and changing the way the global financial system works on almost all facets… yet bring up blockchain with anyone you meet in the ‘regular’ world, and they’ll almost always have almost no idea what you’re talking about.

Blockchain is, in the regular world, an unknown and unused technology.

Bancor’s grand goal is to change that.


Well we’ve got a theory that, if one could make cryptocurrencies so easy to create and so fully liquid that they could represent any store of value at all, it would ignite the ‘long-tail’ of cryptocurrencies the same way youtube ignited the long tail of video… any currency, no matter how small (from company ‘shares’, to concert tickets, to personal tokens, city currencies, small-business tokens, tokens of ownership & identity, time-share tokens… etc. etc.), could be part of the global financial system.

This would fundamentally change the way the global financial system works.

In the words of Bernard Liaetar, co-architect of the Euro, "Bancor creates liquidity and allows for automatic price discovery without requiring a counterparty, which is a breakthrough”. The reason is, kinda like how our inefficient solar panels only capture a small fraction of the total potential energy the sun gives the earth, the current financial system commoditizes only a small fraction of the potential value that humanity can create and exchange.

Here’s how it works: Bancor is an open-sourced protocol that enables anyone to create a new type of cryptocurrency called a smart token, which can hold (and trade) other cryptocurrencies in reserve. It’s money that holds money.

A smart token serves as its own market maker, discovers its own price, and buys/sells smart tokens & reserve currencies on its own, thereby removing the need for a second party in cryptocurrency trades. In other words, every smart token and reserve currency is immediately and permanently exchangeable for any other currency on the Bancor network (which can potentially include all cryptocurrencies in existence) without needing to find the acceptance of exchanges (and their fees).

It’s already up and running in live beta here at with >3000 users, where we’re distributing real, tradable, ERC20 tokens for our bounty program. You can deep dive on exactly how it works in the Bancor Whitepaper ( We’ve also caught the attention of sites like Coindesk, Econotimes, & ETHNews, and won awards like best public blockchain at CoinAgenda. You can see all that stuff here, by the way :slight_smile:

And on June 12 at 10:00 GMT, we’ll be launching our crowdsale & creating the Bancor Network Token, the first fully functional smart token which will serve as the default reserve token for every other smart token on the Bancor network (which is what will make every currency on the network inter-tradable).

If creating the democratization of money & enabling the long tail of user-generated currencies with this sounds like your cup of tea, I’d love to hear what you think of Bancor and its upcoming BNT crowdsale.



Thanks @Eddy I can probably get the answer by reading the white paper (note to self to do). Can you help this ADD student by explaining how you do price discovery without having a counterparty? I do think that if you can do that, it could be a game-changer but for the life of me I cannot imagine how that is possible.


Hey Bernard,

Well it all centers around the fact that the smart token contract is itself holding money, which allows you to trade with the smart token instead of needing to find another human.

The exact calculations are pretty simple (and in the whitepaper), and depend on the CRR (constant reserve ratio) of the smart token’s reserve currencies.

From the FAQ

Smart tokens use a simple calculation to reprice the token any time it is purchased or liquidated through its smart contract. This is done by holding the pre-set CRR constant and adjusting the price to reflect current smart token supply and reserve balance. The token supply increases with purchases (new smart tokens issued to buyer in exchange for a reserve token) and contracts with liquidations (smart tokens returned to and destroyed by the contract in exchange for tokens from the reserve.)

The price increases when the token is purchased, and decreases when it’s liquidated. Over time, the price will stabilize at the point of balance between the purchase and liquidation volumes. You can see the precise formulas and mathematical proofs in our white paper available on our website.


Thanks @Eddy time to stop being ADD and read the White Paper!


Wow, that was one helluva ITO. Last I saw raised $140m.


The Bancor ITO is a case of an uncapped offering. The intention from the team was to allow investors to participate and not get left out from the “whales”.
However, the process proved harder and more complicated than intentioned. There were outages and mentions of cyber attacks (I wasnt personally involved so, only referring to reports). Seems that even though Bancor has set a record, there is controversy within the community.

What are the best practices?

  • To cap or not to cap the amount?
  • Surely, to cap the pre-sale amount.

What say you @Eddy? Look forward to hearing from you when you get a breather.

And for those that want to tickle their brain more, read this thought provoking piece around “Optimal Token sales”


Capped was the lesson from DAO. I see no sensible argument for Uncapped. @Eddy it would be great to get an update when you resurface. To me this is like looking at an IPO the day after and evaluating if there is still value from buying in the secondary market.