Banking, cryptography, and even decentralized finance go back a long way; as far back as the 12th Century when financial crime took place on the roads of Europe. In 1135, Sienna (known as Siena in 21st Century Italy) was an important trade city and heists were common.
To stop the scourge of constant robberies to places such as Veneto, the Bishop of Sienna offered loans against collateral and interest to Sienna citizens and the people who travelled to the city to trade.
At the same time, the Knights Templar initiated a network of money transfer locations so people could deposit money in the Veneto region and travel to Sienna and Venice without the risk of losing all their money and possessions.
Upon arrival at either destination, traveling tradesmen could withdraw their money from a Templar location by handing in an encrypted document that could only be decrypted by the Templars.
By today’s standards, that encryption was so primitive that the so-called algorithm could be cracked in seconds, but it set the scene for today’s intricate systems.
This is where Sienna comes into the picture: to build on the work almost a millennium ago and for our company to contribute to solutions that become the de facto standard in privacy-first DeFi. To see the pioneering work to be based on the shoulders of giants who came before.
Sienna is a privacy-first decentralized finance protocol that enables trustless financial instruments, such as trading and lending with complete privacy. Sienna is aiming to solve the problem of existing DeFi protocols that are clearly flawed where transactions are not private and future trades can be seen by everyone prior to execution.
We all know that execution priority on Ethereum is driven by transaction fees. A transaction can be forestalled by simply introducing a transaction and paying a higher transaction fee. This needs to be fixed.
Pseudo-anonymity comes with great compromises, where the weakest link is something that links all of us to a wallet address. From there, all activity can be tracked to infinity… and beyond.
Money was meant to be private in order to be secure. The Bishop of Sienna and the Knights Templar knew that in the 12th Century and they would have been just as frustrated as Ethereum’s huge congestion problems, slow confirmation times and ridiculous transaction fees. This is the biggest DeFi ecosystem of them all, which has squeezed out smaller investors from decentralised exchanges and lending protocols as they are ravaged by these high transaction fees.
So what is the secret (no pun intended) Sienna sauce? This would be the interoperable DeFi protocol that allows a completely private trading, lending, and borrowing experience with great scalability and low transaction fees.
In mid April 2021, Sienna is going live with a privacy-first front-running resistant AMM that allows you to swap SNIP-20 tokens. The SIENNA governance token is launching at the same time and can be earned via liquidity mining and more.
Crucially, we also provide access to the bridge the Secret Network ecosystem has built for ERC-20 (and soon Binance Smart Chain) tokens to ensure compatibility with the Ethereum ecosystem and beyond, thus making digital money markets efficient and fungible for everyone… and open for institutional investors.
Sienna is launching mid-April 2021.
Privacy at the foundational (protocol and code) level is not the same as not knowing who’s doing what – it’s making sure only the relevant parties know what they need to know.
Privacy is an essential factor to the Sienna platform, and to secure it, the natural choice was Secret Network: the first blockchain that supports encrypted inputs, encrypted outputs and encrypted state for the privacy of smart contracts. We are huge fans of the Secret community and ecosystem, which is why we’ve written for this blog!
By building Sienna on programmable private smart contracts, it enables a variety of powerful new use cases that we are bringing into DeFi.
Programmable privacy allows feeding verifiable sensitive data into a decentralised world without revealing said data. Decentralised identities, credit scores, under-collateralized loans and privacy for institutions are pertinent examples. Sienna is targeting Ethereum initially, followed by blockchains such as Binance Smart Chain, Polkadot, Cosmos blockchains, and other chains as soon as possible.
The platform is controlled by SIENNA, the governance token, which is earned by using the Sienna platform via liquidity mining and other initiatives over time, creating equitable distribution for an ideal decentralized future where SIENNA token holders govern the entire platform.
Privacy has never been more relevant. We are witnessing uprisings against Wall Street hedge funds and the nature of money itself. We see the tyranny of centralized censorship and those iniquitous term; we believe the need for privacy is a fundamental human right. DeFi has to be treated with respect.
The core contributors to Sienna consist of hugely successful entrepreneurs, developers, former-bankers-turned-crypto and pioneers in emerging technologies.
Hopefully, the members of this community will help Sienna progress - but that’s up to you to decide.