Weekly Updates

Tezos in India: a Q&A with Om Malviya

This week, we caught up with Tezos India’s Om Malviya this week to discuss their work, the Tezos India fellowship program, and the growth of Tezos in the region. Check out the Q&A!

Om Malviya

What is Tezos India? What are you all currently working on?

Tezos India is a non-profit organisation founded by a team (Tezsure) and individuals working on Tezos in India. Interestingly, it’s exactly been one year since we did our first community meetup. In a year, we have identified that our focus areas are mainly, but not limited to, developer adoption, education, and assisting the vibrant and fastest growing blockchain ecosystem of India to get on board with Tezos. Currently we are working to wrap up the Tezos India Fellowship and creating a year-long plan for active developer engagement from several Indian technical universities and colleges. We’re also supporting some Indian startups to help navigate developing on Tezos.


What is the Tezos India fellowship program? What kind of impact do you think it has had?  

The idea behind Tezos India Fellowship was to create an exclusive program where we pick the best of the talent, and work with them from ideation, mentorship (thanks to wonderful dev teams in Tezos ecosystem) to building a working first version of the product. Candidates get a monthly incentive for doing so and become polished Tezos engineers in the process. After the fellowship, we plan to help some of the projects to go live on the mainnet and seek iterations of feedback from the community. Impact-wise, since the first meetup having around 43 attendees, our application for the Tezos India Fellowship saw 1472 applications from across the entire country. Tezos India has become a go-to place for regional Tezos-related education and activities.


What is the focus of Tezos India over the next year? What about longer-term?  

Currently, India is seeing a boost in terms of blockchain talent, innovation, and a lot of capital is flowing to the ecosystem for building sustainable long term products. Our focus for next year is to enable as many Tezos developers as we can through hackathons mainly and keep supporting good ideas/projects to iterate, improve, and go live. We are also planning to enable deeper protocol-level education to train some engineers this year to support more R&D on Tezos in India. In the longer term, Tezos India envisions becoming an advocate for Tezos technology for government authorities and corporations while always actively supporting the local community and developer talent, and hosting activities throughout the year.


How did you get started in the Tezos community? Why not focus on another blockchain?  

I had been following Tezos since the fundraiser, but mainly during my time in a program in San Francisco, I got to meet my cofounder and we started a Tezos-based startup which first got us introduced to the community and the ecosystem. After a year, I started observing a growing and flourishing ecosystem in India. I didn’t want to miss out and luckily the Foundation and the community both supported the idea and it’s been exciting since then. What attracted me to Tezos most apart from security, governance, and LPoS, was the community and modularity of Tezos. The idea that a software upgrades itself overnight is fascinating. 


What three things are you most excited to see built on Tezos?  

Tezos has uniquely positioned itself in such a way that there’s not a lot of noise but genuine projects, use cases and a lot of development. Personally, I am looking forward to projects such as Dexter, Sapling proposal, and more development on enabling seamless infrastructure on the mobile side, where Beacon and Camlcase are doing a great job. Apart from that, there are some good projects being baked under the radar and I am excited to see them going live. Also, I am looking forward to introducing and seeing some of the projects from fellowship get launched.

Additional Ecosystem Updates:

We are thrilled to welcome Robert Fontaine to the Tezos Foundation as our new community manager. He will work closely with the community to improve Foundation communications and provide a window into our thinking and operations. Below are some additional updates from around the ecosystem:


The Tezos Foundation has given funds to the teams behind the StakerDAO project, can you expand on the reasons behind this grant and how their project will benefit the Tezos ecosystem?

StakerDAO is part of a global strategy of adoption/collaboration that the Tezos Foundation aims to build for its mid-long term, in line with building products on Tezos blockchain using FA1.2 tokens.


Several VC folks have observed that the excessive baking by the foundation which dilutes the proportional return of other bakers/delegators is a red flag and turns potential new ecosystem participants away. If there was an on chain referendum that resulted in consensus that the foundation should stop baking (decentralization), would the foundation turn their bakers off?

When the Foundation first started baking, it was an important factor to ensure the stability of the chain.  Now, we are doing ongoing work and having ongoing discussions to determine how tez (Tezos tokens) should be used and how the Foundation should approach baking moving forward. Additionally, in a PoS system, the primary incentive to bake is to retain one’s proportionate share of the total money supply. Baking in Tezos directly transfers ownership from those who participate to those who don’t. The more stake that bakes, the less the rewards will be, but everyone still retains their proportionate share of the total money supply. So while rewards may go down as a result of TF baking, everyone still retains their proportionate share of the total money supply. In any case, all Foundation baking rewards will be distributed back to the ecosystem to advance our mission to support the long-term success of the Tezos project.


Is the Tezos Foundation actively seeking grant applications pertaining to Tezos based defi decentralized-apps? What sorts of dapps would The Foundation like to see on Tezos? Can a developer building a Curve or AAVE analogue on Tezos be the recipient of a grant?

The Tezos Foundation is absolutely seeking grant applications pertaining to Tezos-based dApps, especially those in the realm of DeFi. In addition to the multiple grants that we have given to DeFi projects to build out their products, including Dexter and QuipuSwap, we believe that our strategic focus on supporting teams building tooling and infrastructure to make it easier and more secure to build on Tezos will lay the groundwork for the emerging Tezos DeFi ecosystem. The recent Tezos + CoinList Hackathon also included a number of interesting DeFi proposals including DexAuction, Blockly Tezos, and AccessStaking. We continue to be open to funding additional research and development to improve the core protocol to enable DeFi applications to be built safely and efficiently on Tezos, and to funding key on-chain DeFi public goods. With regards to Curve or AAVE analogue, we are happy to review on a case-by-case basis. Send us a note at [email protected]


More details on what funding will be available to wallets in the grants process and what specific features are still missing from the ecosystem would be helpful to know going into the next grant round.

As we’ve mentioned before, we have allocated further funds for additional wallets to make Tezos even more accessible to users. We encourage wallet providers to reach out specifically about integrating Tezos and Tezos-based assets to their wallets and are eager to see more grant applications from popular and widely-used wallets, with a preference towards mobile-first wallets. Our upcoming grants platform will include a wishlist of areas in the ecosystem that we would like to more aggressively support.

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