How Tron's Justin Sun plans to use Poloniex to capitalize on the DeFi craze

Episode 33 of Season 2 of The Scoop was recorded remotely with The Block’s Frank Chaparro and Justin Sun, founder of Tron.

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It's starting to feel a lot like 2017 in the crypto world — particularly in the realm of decentralized finance (DeFi). Just ask Tron's Justin Sun.

Sun is perhaps the highest-profile investor in crypto exchange Poloniex, which he says is now in a position to take advantage of the DeFi craze.

Like during the ICO boom, new coin offerings are dropping with head-spinning frequency, and traders are rushing to speculate on them. In 2017,  Poloniex was riding the ICO wave. Three years later, after some trouble and sell off from Circle, it's trying to make a comeback — with assistance from Sun and Tron. 

Sun got in on the Poloniex deal as part of the consortium that invested $100 million in the exchange after its parent company Circle decided to spin it out. Since then, Poloniex has played a role in some of Tron's major moves, including the acquisition of  Tron's decentralized exchange TRXMarket and the launch of a token sale platform featuring Tron's stablecoin, JUST, as its first supported project.

On this week's episode of The Scoop, Sun said that this year the majority of his energy will be focused on the DeFi space. Already, Poloniex has become one of the most active in listing DeFi governance tokens with 11 listings. 

Sun said he's seen growing market demand despite a small group of users, and he's confident that DeFi will become more popular. "I think it's just like back to 2017 for the old ICO days."

In the episode, Sun broke down how Poloniex fits into Tron's plans to capitalize on the DeFi mania. He also discussed:

  • Why increased network effects will keep Tron from being left behind as more protocols emerge
  • The strategy that brought in enough Tether to grow the number of stablecoins on the Tron blockchain to 3.7 billion
  • His response to those who argue Tron is more centralized and those concerned the network has its roots in plagiarism
  • His story behind the Poloniex deal
  • Why memes are a key community building strategy

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