Published 2 weeks ago • 4 minute read

Top 4 Real World Assets (RWA) Projects to Watch for During the Bull Run

The Real World Assets (RWA) ecosystem is one of the fastest-growing niches in crypto today. As of writing, the total value of tokenized U.S. treasuries, bonds, and cash equivalents stands at $876 million, up from $700 million at the beginning of 2024.

More notably, this industry is attracting financial juggernauts. BlackRock, for example, recently launched a tokenized fund dubbed ‘BUIDL’ on the Ethereum blockchain. The fund attracted over $245 million in deposits within its first week; a clear indication that RWAs are generating a lot of interest. 

Amidst this hype, some DeFi-oriented projects are emerging as frontrunners. The next section will feature the top 5 DeFi projects to look out for as the RWA narrative continues to gain momentum.

  1. Ondo Finance 

Ondo Finance is currently one of the leading RWA platforms, with a market capitalization of $1.2 billion, as per Coingecko metrics. This RWA protocol features two main categories of institutional-grade on-chain offerings: general-access products and qualified-access products, whereby interested individuals or institutions have to meet at least one accredited investor criterion. This could be either having a net worth that exceeds $1,000,000 or income in excess of $200,000 over the past two years.

Ondo’s institutional-grade on-chain products that currently rank high include a short-term U.S. government fund (OUSG) and the Ondo U.S. dollar yield (USDY). The latter is a tokenized note backed by bank demand deposits and short-term U.S. treasuries, and is accessible to non-US individuals as well. According to on-chain data, Ondo’s USDY product enjoys the largest number of holders at 724 across all RWA products, although the OUSG boasts a larger market cap, mainly driven by its focus on institutional-grade clients.

  1. MANTRA Finance (MF) 

MANTRA is a multi-asset fully compliant and regulatory-friendly platform whose main goal is to bridge the gap between traditional finance and DeFi. This RWA platform has attracted a lot of attention over the past year, with its native token $OM gaining over 2000%. MANTRA’s upcoming DEX module is set to offer access to several unique tokenized products, including U.S. treasuries, securities backed by sovereign governments, fractionalized real estate, and listed equity securities.

The project has also achieved a couple of milestones, with the most recent being an $11 million funding round, which saw the participation of notable VCs such as Shorooq Partners, Three Point Capital, Forte Securities, and GameFi Ventures. Strategically, MANTRA plans to scale up its efforts towards exposing more individuals and institutions to the tokenization market, especially in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) and Asia.

“We're crafting an infrastructure designed for builders, institutions, enterprises, and users keen on exploring RWAs. It's a testament to our mission of making asset tokenization a cornerstone of financial inclusivity and market development.” - John Patrick Mullin, MANTRA’s CEO. 

  1. PolyMesh 

Touting itself as a ‘blockchain for securities, Polymesh is another promising RWA project. Its core infrastructure is built on a permissioned model, specifically designed to incorporate due diligence for users who want to create, issue, or manage security tokens. This aligns with the requirements in regulated security markets where factors such as compliance, governance, identity, and confidentiality are of importance both to the regulators and market participants.

What stands out about Polymesh is the chain's implementation of the ERC-1400 standard, which was proposed by the project itself to support the growth of compliant RWAs globally while striking a balance between access and regulations. Polymesh's native token $POLX currently ranks second in the RWA ecosystem with a market capitalization of $592 million. The token’s price recently received a boost, surging by over 100% within the past two weeks, after Blackrock’s debut into the on-chain RWA market.

  1. Centrifuge 

Centrifuge is one of the pioneer RWA platforms designed to decentralize traditional asset financing through tokenization. The project’s RWA market was launched in 2021 and has since attracted established names in the credit market looking to scale their liquidity. One of them is BlockTower Credit, which funded an on-chain lending operation up to a tune of $220 million through Centrifuge’s RWA infrastructure.

At its core, Centrifuge’s Layer-1 infrastructure supports the deployment and financing of RWAs by housing the assets, pools, and tranches. The ecosystem token $CFG facilitates the decentralized management, or rather on-chain governance, of the platform by enabling holders to participate in proposal voting. As of press time, the $CFG token is trading at $1.01, up by over 250% within the past year.

Conclusion 

The RWA market is gradually proving to be a potential game-changer in decentralizing traditional finance and commodity markets. We’re already witnessing big names joining the bandwagon, including JP Morgan, which launched its tokenization platform last year, while Blackrock is currently stirring up the ecosystem. BCG had previously forecasted that this industry could balloon into a $16 trillion ecosystem, and given the most recent developments, this figure may not be as far-fetched. It will be interesting to see how these veterans collaborate with RWA DeFi platforms to make it possible for future generations to trade commodities such as gold and real estate on the blockchain.

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