Feature Fridays: DLC.Link

DLC.Link is transforming Bitcoin's role in DeFi through innovative self-wrapped BTC solutions.

Feature Fridays: DLC.Link

Welcome back to Feature Fridays! This week, we're excited to spotlight DLC.Link, a pioneering platform in the decentralized finance space. Leading the charge is Aki Balogh, Co-founder and CEO of DLC.Link, who also co-founded MarketMuse and serves as an advisor to Dakai.io. With extensive experience in decentralized technologies and AI, Aki's vision is to empower society through innovation.

Check out DLC.LINK

Could you introduce yourself by sharing your name, prior experience, and current role within your company? Additionally, please briefly explain your company's mission and what it offers to its customers.

Hello, my name is Aki Balogh and I am the Co-founder and CEO of DLC.Link, a self-wrapped BTC solution offering the highest levels of security and user control utilizing Discreet Log Contracts (DLCs).

As an entrepreneur building decentralized technologies, my aim is to empower society. Along with DLC.Link I am also the Co-founder & President of MarketMuse, an AI-based content optimization platform. Additionally, I am an advisor to Dakai.io, a software development firm that built Chivo (the Bitcoin wallet created by the government of El Salvador), and I hold two patents in semantic analysis. Before founding DLC.Link and MarketMuse, I worked as a Venture Capital Associate at OpenView Venture Partners where I invested in Big Data and AI companies. 

DLC.Link harnesses the power of Discreet Log Contracts (DLCs) to establish a trustless bridge between Bitcoin and Ethereum. In April 2024, we launched dlcBTC, a Bitcoin alternative enabling depositors to self-wrap their Bitcoin for DeFi on Ethereum while retaining full custody of their assets. This innovation transforms Bitcoin's role in DeFi, empowering depositors to engage in trading, lending, and hedging while maintaining self-sovereignty.

How has your company grown and changed since its inception, and what do you have planned for its future?

Since inception, DLC.Link has grown from a conceptual framework into a practical protocol, enabling safe finance on Bitcoin. We have successfully launched on Arbitrum and onboarded key merchants, attestors, and liquidity providers. Our initial focus on creating a secure and efficient settlement layer has expanded to include innovative products like dlcBTC - a safer wrapped Bitcoin minted from self-custody.

Looking ahead, we plan to further diversify our offerings with products, enhance our multi-chain capabilities and establish strategic partnerships to drive adoption. Our ultimate goal is to reach $100 million in Total Value Locked by the end of the year, solidifying our position as a leader in decentralized finance.

Feature Fridays: Every Friday, we highlight some of the best startups in the blockchain space and feature them on QuickNode's blog and X account. Click here to apply!

What inspired you to develop DLC.Link, and how did you conceive of the idea?

Jesse Eisenberg and I worked in several big tech firms and came across an invention that was created over six years ago by the guy who created the Lightning network; an MIT researcher who created and taught the BTC and lightning course. They published a whitepaper called Smart Contracts on BTC and talked about this discreet log contract (DLC) structure - DLCs didn’t exist at this time and nobody had found a way to leverage the technology until now. In November 2021, Taproot came out which enabled Schnorr signatures and enabled DLC.Link to become viable as a business. It was shocking to us that at the time all the BTC finance mined or conducted was through a centralized institution. This didn’t make any sense to us given that ETH had AAVE and other DEXs as their options. We got a grant from Chainlink Labs to research Bitcoin oracles, which helped us get started. We also received a grant from Stacks, then shifted our focus to the biggest chain — ETH, which is how the idea for wrapped BTC came about, and then we got the idea for dlcBTC. We wanted to focus on building a product that solves a problem and would help the community, I believe we have succeeded with that. 

Can you provide insight into DLC.Link’s progress by sharing any metrics or milestones indicating its traction?

Since launching on Arbitrum in April 2024, DLC.Link has made significant efforts towards achieving its goals. We are on track to achieve our initial milestone of $1 million in Total Value Locked (TVL) by the end of May. This strong start reflects growing adoption and confidence in our platform. With ongoing efforts to onboard more merchants, attestors, and liquidity providers, we are well-positioned to reach our ambitious target of $100 million TVL by the end of the year.

How does your company utilize QuickNode, and what benefits does it bring to your business operations?

DLC.Link sees infrastructure's first-hand impact on the Web3 landscape through QuickNode's innovations and provides all the tools and resources builders need to create incredible products. 

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