In the wake of the MolochDAO Ethereum development funding group launching earlier this year, something like the beginnings of a Cambrian explosion of DAOs, or decentralized autonomous organizations, has ensued.
The most high-profile of this new wave of smart contract-powered projects has been Moloch’s first fork, MetaCartel DAO, which was spearheaded by Peter “pet3rpan” and peers as an outgrowth of a meta-transactions working group that began in the fall of 2018.
Since launching in June 2019, MetaCartel DAO’s stakeholders have used grants to hone in on supporting and accelerating projects building out, or making user experience (UX) improvements to, the “Ethereum application layer” — so dApps. Some of the teams the fledgling but already experienced MetaCartel group has backed include the rDai progammable interest project, the PokéMol mobile MolochDAO frontend, and the Mintbase token issuance platform.
But project grants are only going to part of the equation for the wider MetaCartel ecosystem going forward.
That’s because MetaCartel is capping the “Year of the DAO” off on a high note — the group revealed this week it was launching a for-profit spinoff DAO, MetaCartel Ventures (MCV), that would be “coupled” with a real world limited liability company so as to allow the DAO to enter into actual legal contracts.
MCV Could Be the First of Many
Among other reasons, MetaCartel Ventures is notable because its hybrid and experimental on-chain/off-chain design makes the effort well positioned to provide an early blueprint for more like-minded projects to come, even company + DAO melds in general.
Introducing the whitepaper of MetaCartel Ventures
@VENTURE_DAO , a for-profit investment DAO focused on DApps. Working with @lex_node + @ameensol, we bring code, law, and community together; and share how MetaCartel is able to bring this DAO to life.https://t.co/9Atw9ynAZH
— Peter 'pet3rpan' (@pet3rpan_) December 15, 2019
The project’s whitepaper, co-created by Peter pet3rpan, SpankChain’s Ameen Soleimani, and crypto-savvy attorney Gabriel Shapiro, outlines how MCV will be a member-driven fund that will invest into “early-stage” dApps while enjoying “flexibility that is unparalleled by traditional ‘venture capital fund’ models.”
As for the MCV’s actual structuring, the whitepaper’s authors noted:
“MCV is made up of a code and law pairing, where the DAO’s business entity is tightly coupled with its smart contracts and token technology deployed on the Ethereum mainnet. The technology half of the MCV will consist of an instance of the Moloch v2 smart contract standard and the legal half consisting of a member-managed Delaware limited liability company governed primarily by the Grimoire (the ‘Limited Liability Company Agreement’) and the statues of the Delaware Limited Liability Company Act.”
Per this “Grimoire,” like a rules-based membership pact, there will be three kinds of MCV members: Mages, Goblins, and Summoners.
Mages are non-accredited investors who must remain active in managing the DAO’s activities, lest they be expelled for idleness. Goblins are accredited investors who can simply passively invest in the venture fund or also actively take on Mage-like management responsibilities. Lastly, there are Summoners, which are akin to mercenaries — they can be MCV members or non-members and are paid in tokens to carry out miscellaneous tasks delegated by the DAO.
Primed to Capitalize on New Kinds of Capitalism
In the MCV whitepaper, the project’s creators argue there are investment opportunities around the rising dApp ecosystem that MetaCartel’s network of participants would be uniquely suited to capitalize on.
“If paired with relevant investing experience, we will be able to identify high value early opportunities that other investors are oblivious to,” the authors wrote.
As examples of such DeFi-centric investment opportunites, the MCV team outlined potential revenue sources like facilitating “OTC trades for unlisted assets,” backing “teams to play crypto games” tournaments for prize money, speculating on digital assets like artworks and beyond, and offering seed capital to other DAOs. And that’s just to name a few possibilities.
“As cryptonatives, we are the best positioned group to facilitate [and] encourage these experiments as well as make returns from them,” the MCV team said.