There are hundreds of new decentralized finance (DeFi) applications popping up, with new utility tokens, crypto launchpads, and non-fungible tokens (NFTs) among some of the most popular trends in 2021 so far. Nord Finance is focusing on creating additional utility and profitability to stablecoins, a seemingly less exciting form of digital assets compared to their more volatile cryptocurrency counterparts. Nevertheless, stablecoins play a vital role in the cryptocurrency infrastructure and are often a key part of any crypto investment portfolio. The Nord Finance ecosystem and its native NORD token are allowing users to stake, farm, and earn high interest on a range of stablecoins. Moreover, this is achieved by minimizing risk whilst maximizing rewards. 

In this article, we’re going to dive deep into the Nord Finance ecosystem and discover the services on offer. Moreover, we’ll discuss the function and utility of the NORD token, and how users can earn over 100% APY for staking their stablecoins on the Nord Finance platform. 

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What is Nord Finance?

Nord Finance is an advanced, blockchain-agnostic decentralized finance (DeFi) ecosystem. The project aims to simplify DeFi by combining some of the key attributes of traditional finance with decentralized applications (dApps). Nord Finance was deployed on the Ethereum blockchain.

However, Nord boasts cross-chain interoperability and can be used in conjunction with many different blockchains. This includes a recent integration with Binance Smart Chain. The Nord products on offer will include over-collateralized loans, savings, advisory services, token swaps, and asset management services. Nord Finance is an innovative, exciting new decentralized finance (DeFi) protocol bringing additional utility to stablecoins. 

What are Stablecoins?

The cryptocurrency industry is often synonymous with volatility, and can in extreme cases feature 90% pullbacks within hours and life-changing wealth accumulation in days. It can be a wild rollercoaster-like journey investing in cryptocurrency, and a one-way ticket to Rekt City if you don’t know what you’re doing. Most cryptocurrency tokens are valued by the supply and demand of a token, the utility, plus community engagement, which can result in price volatility. On the other hand, stablecoins offer an alternative method of investment.

Stablecoins, by their very nature, represent a stable value asset, pegged to the value of another asset or commodity. Largely, stablecoins are pegged to the US dollar, meaning each stablecoin will remain at the same value as the dollar. Different stablecoins projects use different assets to back up their stablecoins. For example, USDCoin (USDC) claims to hold one dollar in a bank for every one USDC token minted. Whilst this does offer financial stability, there have been concerns raised that crypto is becoming too centralized, as backing from the traditional infrastructure goes against the nature of decentralization.

As a result, decentralized stablecoins such as DAI have been created. DAI tokens are pegged to the US dollar value and backed by USDC, Ethereum, and a basket of other decentralized digital assets. 

Why use Stablecoins?

For investors and traders looking to take profits from crypto gains, it is often easier, faster, and cheaper to convert said gains into stablecoins as opposed to cashing out into fiat. Stablecoins are supported across every major exchange, both centralized and decentralized. By using stablecoins, traders can hedge against price volatility. Furthermore, keeping a healthy bag of stablecoins to one side is always handy when buying the dip!

USDT is one of the most widely-used trading pairs and is the most commonly used stablecoin across the cryptocurrency industry. This is then followed by USDC and DAI. Make sure to save our Top Stablecoins article for later to gain a deeper understanding of how stablecoins operate.

NORD Token

The NORD token (NORD) can be mined via the platform's liquidity mining facility, or purchased from decentralized exchanges (DEXs) such as Uniswap. The Nord token is a multi-functional ERC-20 token that facilitates on-chain governance. Furthermore, NORD holders can participate in voting, staking, and the execution of yield farming strategies on several different decentralized finance (DeFi) platforms. 

NORD is not a stablecoin, with the price subject to volatility as the number of users of the platform fluctuates. There is a current max supply of 10 million NORD tokens, with approximately 800,000 in circulation according to CoinGecko. The price currently sits around $13, with an $11.5 million market cap.

Nord Finance Ecosystem

The Nord Finance ecosystem is very simple, consisting of four key products:

Nord Savings

  • Users can currently optimize returns using an innovative, stable, multi-chain yield farming mechanism.

Nord Advisory

  • The Nord “robo-advisory service” will be created to automate investment strategies and improve positions.

Nord Loans

  • Crypto assets can soon be leveraged using smart contracts for frictionless over-collateralized loans.

Nord Swap

  • A multi-chain permissionless token swap protocol in development on the Ethereum Network.

Nord Savings V1

The Nord Savings protocol was released in November 2020. Unlike most staking and yield farming platforms, Nord Finance has implemented a novel smart contract that absorbs the cost of transaction fees. This means users can save over 99% on gas fees, paying near zero for all Nord Savings transactions. 

Moreover, the Nord Savings feature has created its own proprietary algorithm to allow risk-adjusted high-interest rewards using a multi-chain platform for stablecoins. Nord Finance aims to offer the highest risk-adjusted annual percentage yield (APY) for stablecoins in the decentralized finance (DeFi) industry. 

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Nord Advisory

Not only does Nord Finance offer the facilities to earn a higher yield on wealth, but it is also soon launching advisory services to ensure your money is working for you efficiently and profitably. Nord Advisory has been designed to help users achieve their financial goals, using a data-driven customizable robo-advisory mechanism. Using their own proprietary algorithm, Nord Finance understands the user profile and can offer personalized investment strategies. This is done so through creating a diversified goal-oriented portfolio. 

Nord Loans

Nord Loans is a facility to borrow money quickly, safely, and without hassle. Users of Nord Finance can opt to provide their crypto assets as collateral to the Nord Loans contract, to instantly receive an over-collateralized loan. The soon-launching decentralized platform is designed to create a “personal overdraft facility” for anyone. This could be to cover a sudden unseen expense, or for making a large purchase without spending or losing any crypto. 

Decentralized finance (DeFi) has created the opportunity for flash loans, a way of taking advantage of crypto arbitrage opportunities - without the need for any loan collateral backing! To understand how to get the most out of DeFi, make sure to first see Ivan on Tech Academy’s Ethereum 101 course. Here you’ll learn about the difference between Bitcoin and Ethereum, plus the fundamentals of this emerging industry. Thereafter, the DeFi 201 course teaches students how to take out flash loans, create DeFi hedge funds, join liquidity pools, and much more! 

Nord Swap

The Nord Swap protocol will provide cross-chain liquidity, allowing multi-chain asset swaps in a simple frictionless transaction. With near-zero fees, Nord Swap will allow users to transact across multiple networks. Nord Finance has been designed with decentralization and self-sustainability in mind. Facilitating cross-chain, multi-network transactions is key for the future development of the platform. Using a blockchain-agnostic framework, Nord Swap will be the exchange arm of the Nord Finance ecosystem.

Nord Liquidity Mining

Still in its early days, the Nord Liquidity Mining program is a simple, easy-to-use platform where users can lock up stablecoins to earn high risk-adjusted yield through multi-chain yield farming. Currently, the Nord Liquidity Mining program offers stable returns using three stablecoins, DAI, USDT, and USDC. Furthermore, the liquidity mining program has been successfully designed to avoid the risk of impermanent loss.

In return for Nord Savings users depositing these stablecoins into the liquidity mining smart contract, users receive ‘nTokens’. Moreover, nToken holders will receive further NORD token rewards for hodling their nTokens! During this period, Nord Finance has committed one million NORD tokens to be distributed through community incentive programs. This will continue for 12 months following the February 2021 launch. 

LP Staking Program

Here is another way you can earn a passive income with NORD tokens. The NORD - LP Staking platform, known as “DeFi Wizard”, makes it easy for users to provide liquidity to Uniswap to earn liquidity provider (LP) tokens. Furthermore, the NORD-ETH UNI-V2 LP token can be locked up to earn an additional annual percentage yield (APY) through the NORD Staking platform.

Nord Finance Ecosystem Partners

The first partnership with Nord Finance was Zokyo. Zokyo is a blockchain-based smart contract security company to help create solid, tamper-proof protocols built for decentralization and self-sustainability.

Shortly following this partnership was the announcement of integration with Frontier. The Frontier decentralized aggregation layer allows Nord Finance users to access multiple DeFi applications with the use of a web3 wallet. Moreover, users of the Frontier mobile app can now interact with the Nord Savings protocol using the Frontier mobile interface. 

Another key partnership is with Unilend. The partnership with Unilend is predominantly on a protocol level, helping to bootstrap the Nord Advisory feature. Unilend can help Nord Finance achieve its mission of “goal-oriented diversified portfolio management”, and personalized robo-advisory services. 

Among the most notable partnerships in 2021 include Orion Protocol. Nord Finance and Orion Protocol are partnering to cooperatively grow each ecosystem separately but with interoperable features. Nord will be implementing all of Orion Protocol’s services including; Orion Liquidity Pool, Orion Lending, Orion Oracle, Orion Wallet Swap SDK, and Orion Liquidity Boost Plugin. The Orion Oracle is being used to gain reliable and accurate price feeds for exchanges, tokens, and liquidity pools. Other projects that have partnered with Nord Finance include Elrond and MahaDAO.

Nord Finance Roadmap 

Conceptualized during mid-2020, Nord Finance has achieved amazing community support, engagement, and interaction within just a few short months. In Q4 2020, the project developed the Nord Finance whitepaper, before developing and auditing the protocol. At this stage, the project was still branded as ‘Slick Finance’. However, towards the end of November 2020, the project announced they were rebranding to Nord Finance. 

Following successful fundraising rounds, Nord Finance launched Nord Savings V1 and the ERC-20 NORD token in Q1 2021. During this quarter the team plans to release an upgraded Nord Savings V2, alongside the launch of the Nord Staking program. 

As the platform continues to gain value and engagement, Nord Finance plans on releasing both the Nord Loans and Nord Swap features during Q2 2021. Moreover, during this period we can expect to see an upgrade of the staking program V2. This will see Nord Finance near completion with their services as development continues for Nord Advisory. In Q3, Nord Finance anticipates the launch of both the NORD Collateral Program in addition to the Nord Advisory. A lot of development is anticipated over the coming months! 

Nord Finance Summary 

The Nord Finance platform presents an intuitive and user-friendly interface, simple for people who are perhaps new to crypto. Nord Finance hopes to be at the forefront of interoperable liquidity mining and continue to onboard new people into the industry. The project offers high yield returns with minimal risk on a variety of stablecoin assets. With the introduction of new protocols and upgrades, we can expect to see new tokens appear on the Nord Finance platform soon. 

One of the partners to the Nord Finance ecosystem is blockchain security firm, Zokyo. Zokyo has carried out an audit on the Nord Savings smart contract, which was successfully completed with no issues. In addition to Zokyo, Nord Finance has other strategic crypto partnerships including Orion, Frontier, and Elrond. Combined with an experienced team, Nord Finance appears to have a solid foundation to perform well in the 2021 bull market. Nord Finance combines DeFi, yield farming, and investment advisory services in an all-in-one platform, designed with new users in mind.

The blockchain industry is growing at an exponential rate. As the number one in-demand skill according to LinkedIn, blockchain technology can be adopted across a broad array of industries and roles. From real estateinsurance, or energy sectors, to music, art, or healthcare! Ivan on Tech Academy can provide all you need to start a life-changing career in blockchain. Courses are created by industry-leading experts, with a community student forum to interact and engage with like-minded people! Try our Blockchain & Bitcoin 101 course to get started with the basics of blockchain. You are only one click away from starting a new crypto career path today!