Veronica Stevany

hello@veronicastevany.com

PRODUCT DESIGN

Alkemy

DARC Collateralized Synthetic Asset Management

Alkemy is a part of the Konstellation Ecosystem enabling the staking and minting of DARC stablecoin and synthetic asset investing. Alkemy required users to put collaterals on the stake before they can mint synthetic assets. Users are required to maintain their collateral ratio in order to stay, earn rewards, and do trading. 

Objective

The DARC Token is at the core of the Konstellation Ecosystem. The DARC token facilitates all transactions, staking, and decision-making activities to support the Konstellation ecosystem.

Konstellation Network was founded in order to create a 2nd layer upon which to build real world financial and investment use cases.

The creation of synthetic assets by staking a native token is a topic that has been explored in the industry and has gained significant popularity and user adoption. The ability to stake to provide a liquid token allows the network to continue to maintain security by significant staking but also allows users to a liquid token that permits trading of other assets.

This behaves very similarly to a collateralized loan. We believe that in order for there to exist a robust and self-reinforcing token economy, there should also be a cost of capital (interest rates) that are associated with the ability to trade against the illiquidity of the staked tokens. This can be considered a cost for the built in liquidity. This interest should be paid to those that are staking, but not borrowing against the collateral to trade.

In order for there to be an orderly market and a seamless trading experience, it would be important for the liquid tokens that are generated to be as stablecoins. The value of the DARC token will set the amount of loan that can be taken along with the collateral requirement that is set by a formula in the system which in the future will also be subject to decentralized governance. This is an innovative hybrid approach which brings together the best elements of network security, liquidity and algorithmic system rebalancing.

A well-designed ecosystem will allow DARC to become useful and create a very deep market for the price. This will allow the system to self control the supply and demand.

Goal

  • Making the product from zero to hero
  • Simplify a very complicated product with user-oriented design

Team

Brand design

  • Veronica Stevany
  • Okthiane Tjitasura

Product Designer

  • Veronica Stevany
  • Yaejin Song

Product & Business

  • Raehyun Kim
  • Joris Colleret
  • Sang

Tech lead

  • Andrey Dzyunyak
  • Denis Kravchenko
  • Taras Ivanov

My Role

Lead designer

UX design

  • Research
  • User flow
  • Wireframes

UI design

  • Branding
  • Style guide
  • Desktop version final screens
  • Interactive prototype
Step 1

Product Research

What is synthetic assets?

Synthetic assets are a new class of assets that mimic the value of existing assets without any physical tie to that asset. There are a growing number of synthetic assets in the crypto space. 

Competitors

SYNTHETIX

Synthetix is a decentralised synthetic asset issuance protocol built on Ethereum. These synthetic assets are collateralized by the Synthetix Network Token (SNX) which when locked in the contract enables the issuance of synthetic assets (Synths). This pooled collateral model enables users to perform conversions between Synths directly with the smart contract, avoiding the need for counterparties. This mechanism solves the liquidity and slippage issues experienced by DEX’s.. Read More

Key Points :

  • Complete features in the platform including wallet management

Plus Points :

  • Every space in the design is used for informative purpose

Paint Points :

  • The flow is very complicated and hard to understand and requires extra learning time
  • The synthetic asset trading platform is separated which leads to confusion when it suddenly jumps to Kwenta when users browse in the synth asset list.

MIRROR FINANCE

Mirror is a DeFi protocol powered by smart contracts on the Terra network that enables the creation of synthetic assets called Mirrored Assets (mAssets). mAssets mimic the price behavior of real-world assets and give traders anywhere in the world open access to price exposure without the burdens of owning or transacting real assets.. Read More

Key Points :

  • Main currency -> UST; Protocol’s token -> MIR
  • MIR is used for participating in the governance
  • Collateral ratio is used for “borrow” only

Plus Point :

  • Design is very simple and easily understandable

Pain Point :

  • The user has to go to “My Page” every time they want to check the remaining UST while doing the trade or borrow
Step 2

Ideation : Wireframe & Userflow

ALKEMY’S GENERAL FLOW

Existing user

  • User connects wallet directly
  • User manages their account or browse & trade the synthetic assets

New user

  • User will read the information on the website to get the idea of Alkemy
  • User who wants to know more will look for the whitepaper
  • After the user sure with Alkemy, they will connect their wallet and start using Alkemy

ALKEMY’S TRANSACTIONS FLOW

Trade synth asset with DARC as Collateral

  • Users bring (cosmos native) DARC to the alkemy platform.
  • Users “stake” DARC as the collateral to be able to mint USDk. The USDk minted can be used for trading the synthetic assets.
  • Users “burn” USDk to unstake their locked DARC.

Only stake DARC without mint USDk

  • User can stake DARC without mint USDk to collect the reward, as long as the user maintains his collateral ratio.
  • The stakers will be rewarded from the synthetic assets trading fee.

COLLATERAL RATIO

The collateral ratio is the ratio between staked and synthetic assets. The collateral ratio of user affects what they can do inside the Alkemy. The collateral ratio conditions provided are below :

  • Too much staking compared to the debt. 
  • Only possible actions is to  mint more USDk.
  • If not, will be liquidated with warning.
  • Too much staking compared to the debt.
  • Only possible actions is to mint more USDk
  • Can’t claim reward but not liquidated
  • Can mint more synth without staking until 500%
  • Can stake more without minting until 700%
  • Can claim rewards
  • Too much debt compared to the staked DARC
  • Only possible actions is to stake more DARC
  • Can’t claim reward but not liquidated 
  • Too much debt compared to the staked DARC
  • Only possible actions is to stake more DARC
  • If not liquidated with warning

Based on this condition, account “status” and indicator will be given for the users to be able to easily understand.

WIREFRAME

Based on the general flow, I made the wireframes, discussed with the product, business, & tech team, collect their feedbacks and insights, and reiterate a couple times.

BRAND DESIGN

With the concept given by the stakeholders, we drafted and finalized the logo and brand identity as below.

Step 3

Prototype : MVP

1. Homepage

The homepage mostly contains the intro and explanation about what Alkemy is, and how trusted is Alkemy. We tried to make it as simple as possible yet explaining enough, and want to make the users know our main service just by one glance. To make this possible, we  put the key element, which is the investable synthetic traditional assets, as the first look.

And we continue by explaining what the user can do on our platform, which is to earn and to trade. The user can click on the buttons if they want to know more. The remaining sections are to gain the trust of the users: by putting the news and updates from the company there, and continuing with showing articles from the media that talk about the platform, as well as showing the existing partners.

2. Asset list

The asset list can be accessible from the navigation menu, and the “Explore Assets” button on the homepage’s first section.

The asset list page shows all the tradeable synthetic assets from crypto, stocks, equities, forex, and commodities from the traditional investment.

3. Asset Detail

The look before users connect to their wallet
After they connect to the wallet, users can see their status for their collateral ratio and balance

The asset detail page is accessable once the “Details” button from Asset List page is clicked, or once the synthetic asset cards on the Homepage is clicked. The user can find the short explanation of the asset, the chart, the market details, and can buy or sell on the page if the user already connects their wallet and has some USDk on the platform.

4. Trade asset flow

With assumption that the user has USDk in their balance and managing their collateral ratio well, the synthetic asset trading flow is like this.

5. My Page – Overview (dashboard)

How to get to "My Page" dashboard

To get access to the user dashboard, the user must connect their wallet first, and then click on “My Page” button which will appeared afterward.

In this “My Page – Overview” or dashboard page, the user can see the total staked DARC, the earnings from staking, the USDk that the user currently has, as well as the collateral ratio and the synthetic assets that the user has.

Collateral ratio indicator

Collateral Ratio indicator also can be found in this Overview page. The user can check their status and what they can or can’t do with the current status. If the user needs more information, they can click on “Learn more” button which will direct the user to a dedicated article about collateral ratio information.

Collateral ratio in Sidebar Status

The collateral ratio can be also found in the sidebar, under the “Status” section. The user can see their collateral ratio, the USDk balance, and the total asset value that is currently on the platform.

This sidebar information is useful because the user can take a glimpse of their status while doing other things inside the dashboard.

6. Mint & Burn USDk 

a. Collateral Ratio = “Ideal”
Minting process for "ideal" collateral ratio

The capacity to mint & burn USDk is different based on the user’s collateral ratio condition.

The normal collateral ratio is between 500 to 700. Each time the user mint, burn, or stake, it will change the collateral ratio, so the user needs to watch it.

The capacities for “Ideal” collateral ratio are as below :

  • Can mint more synth without staking until 500%
  • Can stake more without minting until 700%
  • Can claim rewards
Minting without stake can be done as long as the collateral ratio still in "ideal" status

If the user mint too much USDk without stake, the collateral ratio will drop below 500%, and the user won’t be able to mint with that condition.

b. Collateral Ratio = “Warning”
Collateral ratio between 700%-900%, stake DARC is disabled.

The “Warning” status is applied to collateral ratio between 300%-500% and 700%-900%.

For collateral ratio between 700%-900%, the user must mint more USDk without stake DARC, or need to unstake the locked DARC to lower the collateral ratio.

Collateral ratio between 300%-500%, the whole features are disabled

And for collateral ratio between 300%-500%, the whole features to mint are disabled, and the user must stake more DARC to get the collateral ratio higher, or burn their existing USDk.

The stake DARC process can be done in “Stake & Unstake DARC” page.

7.  Stake & Unstake DARC

a. Collateral Ratio = “Ideal”
Stake & Unstake DARC for collateral ratio within "ideal" status

The capacity to stake & unstake DARC is different based on the user’s collateral ratio condition.

For the “ideal” status, the user can stake & unstake their DARC as long the collateral ratio still stay under 700%.

b. Collateral Ratio = “Warning”
Stake & Unstake DARC for collateral ratio 700%-900%

For “warning” status with collateral ratio between 700%-900%, the user must unstake DARC and can’t stake more DARC. Or the user can mint without stake if they don’t want to unstake their DARC.

Stake & Unstake DARC for collateral ratio 300%-500%

And for collateral ratio between 300%-500%, the user must stake more DARC. The user won’t be able to unstake their DARC unless they burn their existing USDk.

7.  Transaction History

Users can check their trade, mint, burn, stake, and unstake history on Transaction History page. They can also check the status of transaction there.

Conclusion

This was an excellent opportunity for me to explore more possibilities in the Defi industry. So far this project is the most challenging project for me since it requires a lot of research and understanding of many technical things. From a design perspective, this project also improves me in many ways – to be able to think more deeply about how to make the flow as simple as possible for users, to inform users the important things yet maintain the design to be still in a clean shape, in order to reach wider audiences from different backgrounds.

For the next steps, once the project is launched, we can measure the reactions and interactions of the users. Then use the numbers to further improve and optimize the design.