Exchange protocol Uniswap launches UNI governance token

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Ethereum transactions jump 30% as Uniswap’s token claim begins

According to a blog article by Uniswap on the 17th of September 2020, the popular decentralized exchange is listing its own UNI governance token.

This announcement has been anticipated in the crypto space for some time as we observed other protocols’ huge success after doing similar.

Unfazed by the controversy surrounding Sushiswap over the last few weeks Binance also announced very shortly afterwards that they would open trading in UNI/BTC, UNI/BNB, UNI/BUSD and UNI/USDT trading pairs on September 17 at 3 AM UTC. Liquidity mining will commence from September 18th and run through until November 17th.

Binance recently came under heavy fire for listing SUSHI just days after it was announced. SUSHI is the controversial token of a cloned Uniswap project run by a pseudo-anonymous founder who disappeared with around $14M in user funds before returning it all.

In the past Binance has always been very careful which projects they list but it would appear in trying to keep up with the frantic pace of the DeFi space that these barriers have been lowered.

Ethereum buckles under the strain

Following the announcement from Uniswap, the number of pending transactions on the Ethereum protocol per minute increased from around 160,000 to over 210,000 at the time of writing. According to Etherscan.

Source: Etherscan

The large volume of transactions sent to the UNI smart contract in the last few hours has also led to an increase in gas fees on Ethereum. Currently, the average gas fee is up to 650 Gwei, compared to the average 152 Gwei on Wednesday 16th based on Etherscan’s data.

Uniswap fights back

This announcement from Uniswap comes as a direct response to SushiSwap. While the full recap can someday become the basis of a screenplay, the short version runs like this.

A pseudo-anonymous founder forks Unsiwap adding a governance token with some additional incentives. The project uses Uniswap as a launch base, with the intention of migrating the liquidity away to its own platform. Capital pours into the pools.

Then the founder sells off the dev share tokens, the community panics, only to be saved by a transfer of ownership to the CEO of FTX. There is a vote to elect nine owners of the multi-sig wallet and the migration successfully occurs on September 9th 2020.

Uniswap currently has the third-most value locked in their protocol, $1.05 billion which shows the popularity of the exchange.

Source: DappRadar

Governance tokens have become a hot investment in 2020. Decentralized finance adopters have been rushing to platforms such as, which distributes YFI tokens, currently valued at around $34,000.

Source: CoinGecko

In Summary

  • UNI, the Uniswap Protocol token, is live!
  • UNI contract address: 0x1f9840a85d5aF5bf1D1762F925BDADdC4201F984
  • 60% of the UNI genesis supply is allocated to Uniswap community members. A quarter of which (15% of total supply) has already been distributed to past users
  • To start, UNI is available through four liquidity mining pools. UNI holders may vote to add more pools after an initial 30-day governance grace period

For more information on claiming UNI or to find out more about the project. Read the official launch article here.

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