MakerDAO Tops 2023 DeFi Earnings Despite Setbacks

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MakerDAO: An Impressive Year Full of Milestones

MakerDAO has established itself as the DeFi protocol with the highest revenues in 2023. This was made possible by an increase in the supply of DAI stablecoin and the integration of real-world assets and US Treasury Bills (T-Bills), which provided the protocol with returns through rising interest rates.

MakerDAO’s Journey to the Top

At the beginning of the year, Maker was displaced by the liquid staking protocol Lido as the leading DeFi protocol in terms of Total Value Locked (TVL). This was due to an increased Ethereum staking activity, which directed liquidity to the protocol in anticipation of Ethereum’s Shanghai upgrade.

The Challenges of MakerDAO

Maker’s problems were further exacerbated in March when its DAI stablecoin suffered a devaluation following the unexpected collapse of Silicon Valley Bank. This led to the USD Coin (USDC) temporarily losing its parity with the dollar. Prior to this event, MakerDAO’s Peg Stability Module (PSM) heavily relied on the USDC to stabilize the protocol’s DAI stablecoin at 1 dollar.

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MakerDAO’s Adjustment

Following the temporary devaluation of the USDC in March, which greatly affected the DAI and depressed its supply, Maker reduced its dependence on the stablecoin. By June, this had fallen by almost 80%. Throughout the year, Maker’s Real-World-Assets (RWAs) division grew. These represent on-chain variations of assets in the traditional financial sector.

MakerDAO’s Revenues

Over 65% of Maker’s fee revenues in October came from its RWAs. However, revenues from tokenized T-Bill products began to rise at the end of October and surpassed those from RWAs. At the time of publication, Maker’s tokenized T-Bill products accounted for 52% of its revenues, while only 6.1% came from the RWAs.

Conclusion

Despite some challenges, MakerDAO has delivered impressive performances in 2023 and has established itself as the DeFi protocol with the highest revenues. With a rising DAI stablecoin supply and the successful integration of real-world assets and US Treasury Bills, MakerDAO has demonstrated its ability to adapt to market changes and take advantage of them.

Sources: DefiLlama, Dune Analytics.

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