In a major breakthrough for the decentralized finance (DeFi) space, one of the most popular stable coins, DAI, has been made available for use on the applications in the RSK ecosystem, Bitcoin’s smart contracts platform. RSK and the RSK Infrastructure Framework (RIF) development team have achieved this by using the RSK-Ethereum cross-chain bridge. Trading pairs for DAI have been enabled on RSKSwap, a Uniswap-style DEX for the RSK network.

Bridging Maker and RSK

The integration of DAI into the Bitcoin DeFi ecosystem will allow users of RSK dApps to send DAI microtransactions and deposit the stable coin into staking and lending smart contracts. As Diego Gutierrez Zaldivar, CEO and co-founder of IOVlabs, the company powering RSK and RIF, said, “the DAI integration is another key step towards Bitcoin DeFi’s adoption. We are confident the growth of the Bitcoin ecosystem and its DeFi opportunities has only just begun, with much more to come.”

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The RSK ecosystem is a network of decentralized applications (dApps) running on top of the RSK blockchain. This platform is anchored to the Bitcoin blockchain via a merge mining mechanism, which extends Bitcoin’s security guarantees to it without the need for it to have a separate consensus procedure. Smart contracts on RSK are written in Solidity, the same language that Ethereum relies on, which makes RSK dApps easily interoperable with their Ethereum counterparts. RIF is a set of developing tools for RSK, which helps it build decentralized Internet features on Bitcoin such as identity, payments, and storage.  

Maker’s Ethereum-powered smart-contract protocol allows the issuance of the algorithmic DAI stable coin. Users wishing to mint new DAI must lock a larger value in one of the authorized collateral assets. DAI has now been brought over to RSK by means of the RSK-Ethereum token bridge. Users wishing to use DAI on RSK will need to lock it on Ethereum, upon which the corresponding ERC777 “side tokens” will be issued on the RSK platform. 

Bitcoin Community’s Embrace of Defi

DAI’s launch on RSK follows a string of important developments in the Bitcoin DeFi space. Over a short period of time, BTC holders have tokenized almost $1 billion of BTC using the wrapped BTC mechanism developed by Bitgo. The ERC20 standard-compliant WBTC tokens thus created can be used in any DeFi protocol on Ethereum to generate gains for BTC holders.

Earlier this year, RSK- and RIF-focused company Money on Chain announced the development of a DeFi platform called RIF on Chain (ROC). This platform will allow users to mint three derivative tokens backed by RIF tokens. One of them is RSK’s DAI analog RDOC. Initially, it’s a single-collateral token backed only by RIF. The other two synthetic assets are RIFP and RIFX. RIFP is the token whose staking on ROC will trigger the issuance of RDOC, and RIFX is designed to handle the RIF price volatility.  

The Bitcoin space has also seen the emergence of its own versions of DeFi tools popularized by Ethereum developers. Last month, the RSK community revealed the creation of the Uniswap DEX RSK twin RSKSwap. This DEX will enable users to trade any ERC20 token for another including tokenized BTC on RSK (RBTC). The recently launched Sovryn project is striving to create an RSK competitor to decentralized lending and margin trading protocols like Aave and dy/dx.   

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