Tempus Interview by Bspeak!

Tempus announced last week that they raised $4M from Lemniscap, Jump Capital, Distributed Global, GSR, Wintermute, Tomahawk VC, and others. There will also be a token launch on LBP this week. As you'll see in the interview, the founder David Garai was also a lawyer and lived in Tokyo before. Co-founder Đorđe Mijović is a former member of the Solidity core team at the Ethereum Foundation.

This time, I had a chance to interview the Tempus team. This was translated into Japanese and posted in my weekly newsletter Bspeak!. Enjoy the interview☕

*This is not investment advice and informational purposes only.

About Tempus

CoffeeTimes: Hello, David and Tempus team! I did feature Tempus a few times in my newsletter before but can you tell us what Tempus is?

David: Sure! Tempus is future yield tokenization and fixed-rate protocol built on the Ethereum network. We aim to deliver the most capital-efficient and user-friendly approach to fixed yields. For example, users can deposit ETH or stablecoins into a Tempus pool, and get a high fixed yield through a click of a button.

Tempus also offers good yield opportunities for LPs. For example, if you are already lending DAI on Compound, or staking ETH on Lido, you can deposit cDAI or stETH into Tempus to fix your yield farming rewards for the next few months. You can also deposit cDAI or stETH as a liquidity provider, and earn additional LP income on those assets.

On the backend, what happens is that Tempus splits yield bearing tokens (such as stETH, cDAI) into tokenized principal and yield tokens. Those primitives can then be traded against each other.



CoffeeTimes: Sounds nice. I heard you lived in Tokyo before! What made you start this project?

David: That’s right. Before I got into the crypto and DeFi space, I previously worked as a lawyer. During my training, I was seconded to Allen & Overy’s Tokyo office for 6 months. I advised large Japanese conglomerates like Mitsubishi Corporation on outbound M&A transactions.

I ended up staying out there for another year after that at “Gaikokuho Kyodo-Jigyo Horitsu Jimusho Linklaters” in Marunouchi, where I mostly worked on derivatives and structured finance transactions for big banks and funds.

Ultimately, it was that TradFi experience that inspired me to build a decentralized equivalent to interest rate swaps in DeFi.



CoffeeTimes: I think there are projects out there that have a similar vision such as Element or Sense. What would be the difference between them?

David: The two main differences are capital efficiency and user experience.

Capital efficiency: Other protocols also tokenize principal and future yield positions, but they then let you trade those two primitives against stablecoins. So for each pool, you have a Principal/Stablecoin and a Yield/Stablecoin AMM. In Tempus, the architecture is different, you can trade Principals and Yields directly against each other.

This is very beneficial to LPs for example, who maintain the exposure to the entire underlying yield (e.g. ETH staking yield) plus they get the swap fees from the Principal/Yield AMM, aggregated into one high yield. As a result, the LP Yield in Tempus will always be higher than Element or Sense.

UX: Please try our latest UI to see the difference, we aim to simplify the experience for most users who find Element, Pendle, etc. very convoluted and hard to understand.



CoffeeTimes: Lido is now the biggest liquid staking solution. And Tempus seems to have a great connection with Lido and Balancer, how did you start and deepen the relationships?

David: We identified Lido as a core partner because of the strong institutional need for a fully trustless and capital-efficient ETH 2.0 staking solution. We got in touch with them and decided to put forward a proposal to their grant team which ended up being accepted soon after.

We met Fernando Martinelli of Balancer at EthCC. We had a great conversation about how we could use Balancer V2 for our AMM and we ended up going with them.

Luckily, we have a very good working relationship with both teams.



About Tempus Token

CoffeeTimes: Tempus will issue its own tokens, TEMP. What can people do with the token?

David: The TEMP token serves two main roles, the first of which is governance, and the second of which is staking to receive a share in network fees.

First, in terms of governance, as Tempus moves towards full decentralization, TEMP holders will be responsible for, for example, proposing changes to the protocol such as adjusting protocol-level fees and minting or burning TEMP tokens. TEMP holders will also be able to vote on how to spend funds that have accrued to the Tempus Treasury.

Second, in terms of staking, the first thing to know is that Tempus can earn fees from underlying trading activity in its pools - so on deposits, withdrawals, and swaps. Although a portion of these fees will accrue to the Tempus Treasury, some of them will accrue directly to those who stake their TEMP. The exact staking and value accrual mechanism is something that will be agreed upon by TEMP holders at a later date.



CoffeeTimes: Okay further question about TEMP, tokenomics are already fixed?

David: That's correct. 1 billion TEMP will be minted at the genesis and will become accessible over the course of 3 years. Token inflation of 2% per year can be triggered by the governance we just discussed after 4 years have passed to make sure there is long-term development and community support available for Tempus.


CoffeeTimes: How would the token be distributed?

David: Of the initial 1 billion TEMP tokens, 26% will be allocated to current and future team members (with 3 year vesting) and 22% to investors and advisors (with 2.5 to 3 year vesting).

Because we are such strong believers in decentralization, the remaining 52% of our initial token supply has been allocated to benefit the entire Tempus ecosystem. Those 520 million TEMP tokens will be divided 48.07% to liquidity mining and community incentives, 38.46% to the Tempus Treasury, and 13.47% to our upcoming public token sale (which we can discuss shortly).



Future Plan or Roadmap thing

CoffeeTimes: Please tell us briefly about your future plans in the coming few months!

David: We have a lot of exciting plans for the next few months. The next big event will be our upcoming token launch through a Balancer LBP via Copper on Tuesday 16 November, where we’ll be auctioning 70 million TEMP tokens. Check out our Medium for all the details on how you can get involved in that.

We’ve also recently released a new version of our website and dApp ahead of our planned mainnet launch, which will be taking place towards the end of November. Once we're live on mainnet, our primary focus in the first few months after launch will be rolling out other forms of variable rate staking. At launch, we will be deploying Lido, Yearn, Compound, and Aave-based pools, but we will be working on further integrations until users have the option to deploy any pool and fix - or speculate on - any form of variable yield.



Some founding stories on Tempus

CoffeeTimes: I’m just curious, how did you form the current team? I am seeing founders these days find co-founders or team members on Twitter/Discord, not in person.

David: The funny thing is that I actually raised a seed round mainly by myself while I was searching for a co-founder and the rest of the team. As a founder, it’s all about the hustle - you have to convince people why they should drop everything they’re doing and join you. I reached out to many people on LinkedIn, tried hiring recruiters etc. I met my co-founder on LinkedIn actually, we met in person, hit it off, and the rest is history.



CoffeeTimes: By the way, why is the name Tempus?

David: Tempus means “time” in Latin. The protocol allows depositing yield bearing tokens into contract with maturities, and then trading the Principals and Yields against each other. This allows time-based risk optimization - time plays an important role in the protocol hence the name.



CoffeeTimes: Can you give any words to the Japanese audience? Do you have any impressions on the Japanese crypto scene?

David: I would argue that Japanese culture had the most influence on crypto. Sushi, Shiba Inu, memes like “waifu” all originate from Japan. That being said, I think actual adoption in Japan is still low, and I would really like to see more Japanese people in this space. At Tempus, we’ve opened a Japanese Discord channel for this purpose. I personally also really like Japan so if you can think of a better way to engage a Japanese audience, please let me know!



CoffeeTimes: Thank you for taking your time! Where can we learn more about Tempus?

David: You can join our Discord, follow us on Twitter or subscribe to our Medium.

Discord | Github | Medium | Twitter | Website

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