The intent of this post is to give you a clear picture of the initial distribution of tokens for the AURORA protocol.
Each section is designed to be easily understandable on its own. However, additional methodological notes will be provided at the end. The charts will typically display the most cautious or conservative scenario whenever there is a choice to be made. Please note that the accuracy or certainty of the numbers may vary for each category, as indicated below.
This is the current token distribution schedule for AURORA. All previous changes to the schedule are noted in the Changelog section at the end.
AURORA is an Ethereum compatibility solution created by the NEAR Protocol's team, delivering a turn-key solution for developers to operate their Ethereum apps on a high-throughput, scalable and future-safe platform, with low transaction costs for their users.
AURORA is a product that helps Ethereum users and dApps to easily move to the NEAR blockchain. It allows users to do two distinct things: upload and interact with Solidity smart contracts on the NEAR blockchain and move assets from Ethereum to NEAR (including ERC-20 tokens).
The Aurora DAO approved the creation of the official project governance token, AURORA, with a total supply of 1 billion. The token was deployed on Ethereum as non-upgradable ERC-20 with fixed supply, and then bridged to NEAR and AURORA using the trustless Rainbow Bridge. Here are respective links to the token on NEAR and Aurora protocols.
There were 1,000,000,000 Aurora tokens (AURORA) created at Genesis on October 7, 2021.
The article has been updated at the end of June, 2023 which is the 19th month since the Token Generation Event on November 18, 2021 (TGE).
The current development of the allocation consists of:
20% (200 million) – Community Treasury
35.2% (352 million) – Aurora DAO Council treasury
16% (160 million) – Aurora Labs long term incentives. Tokens are subjected to a vesting scheme determined by Aurora Labs.
9% (90 million) – Aurora Labs private round investors. These tokens are subjected to the unlocking scheme.
3% (30 million) – Allocated to Aurora validator delegators.
2% (20 million) – Early AURORA contributors. Allocations should be provided by NEAR Foundation. These tokens should be subjected to the unlocking scheme. NEAR Foundation may implement a vesting scheme for these tokens.
1% (10 million) – Allocated to Aurora Labs to be used as incentives for project advisors
1% (10 million) – Allocated for bootstrapping the AURORA ecosystem.
3% (30 million) – Allocated for Aurora Labs growth round
3.1% (31 million) – Ongoing Grant programs
0.8 % (8 million) – Ongoing Bug bounty program
5.9 % (59 million) – Allocated for AURORA Staking rewards
As the Protocol grows and new initiatives are approved, the allocation changes: new categories might be added or aggregated.
Planning circulating supply
“Circulating Supply” is every token that isn’t subject to a lockup at a particular time. The vast majority of the AURORA supply is subject to long-term lockups. Based on the current estimation 99.05% of the total supply is planned to be unlocked by month 132 from the Token Generation Event on November 18, 2021 (TGE).
The chart below shows the increase in circulating supply as tokens unlock:
Components of circulating supply
The following chart provides more detail on the components of the circulating supply as it grows over time.
The following chart provides a closer look to the components of circulating supply within only 48 months following TGE.
Private round investors
9% of all tokens was allocated to Aurora Labs private round investors. According to the most recent DAO decision from April 2022 with the following schedule: 2 unlocks of 3.25M AURORA in May and August 2022, 3.5M AURORA in November 2022 and 8 consequent unlocks of 10M AURORA on every third month starting from February 2023. All the tokens will be unlocked at the end of the 36th month.
Aurora Labs long term incentives
The AURORA protocol has been under development since the second half of 2020, led by a skilled professional team. Aurora Labs plays a significant role in contributing to the AURORA ecosystem, with a specific emphasis on advancing AURORA's technology, including the development of the Aurora Engine and Rainbow Bridge.
Team's allocation provides reasonable incentivisation and governance participation when the governance tools are implemented.
The unlocking scheme for this stream is a modified version of standard 4 year linear unlock; 1 year cliff scheme. Instead of unlocking 25% of the tokens after 12 months, only 10% are unlocked, while the remaining 15% are distributed linearly over the months 13 to 24 (in addition to the other 25% provided by the initial scheme). The distribution of the remaining 50% is linear over months 25 to 48. Such updated distribution allows to smoothen the cliff and ensure the steady unlock of the tokens.
It's worth mentioning that not all of the AURORA tokens have been allocated to the team already.A portion of the token supply has been intentionally left unallocated, reserved for the future expansion of the team. This insure that there is room for the team to grow and expand as needed.
In accordance with the most recent Aurora DAO decision 200 million AURORA tokens are devoted to the community treasury. The suggested mechanics uses one of the most successful models used in DAOs for community treasury governance that was introduced by Curve in their VE Governance Model.
The community is expected to take on the responsibility of funding, while the Aurora DAO Council will serve as the executive arm, capable of executing actions that may pose challenges for the DAO.The purpose for the Community Treasury operations is broad and light. It allows funding the public goods, as well as allocating incentives to DeFi projects and other types of initiatives. The functionality of Ecosystem streams can be used by the projects to pay back to the community for allocating funding.
Aurora DAO Council Treasury
Aurora DAO Council Treasury was redefined and clarified in accordance with the aforementioned Aurora decision. The purpose of the 352 million $AURORA fund is to allow Aurora DAO council members to efficiently vote on allocation of funds for the specific projects that will bring additional benefits to the Aurora Ecosystem.
The approved unlocking scheme of the dedicated funds is as follows:
Aurora Labs growth round
Aurora DAO has voted on the allocation of 3% of AURORA tokens (30M) to Aurora Labs on the18th of April 2022 in this proposal, to conclude a growth round. Below is the unlock structure of these tokens.
Ongoing initiatives and programs of the Aurora DAO consist of AURORA Staking rewards program, Grant programs, Bug Bounty program, ecosystem streams and airdrop.
AURORA Staking rewards program
The initial version of Aurora+ staking rewards program was described in this post, the model successfully ended in May 2023.
The updated May 2023 model introduced an enhanced rewards distribution model. According to the updated logic rewards decrease with a constant coefficient of every quarter which ensures that the amount of rewards decreases 2 times every 4 years.
The below chart presents 72 months from the TGE of the unlocks for the aforementioned allocations:
AURORA will update the above information regularly. If you are interested in analytics and exploring these numbers (or if you find errors/inconsistencies), please feel free to create tools or views and let us know at [email protected]. If you are interested in building on AURORA please submit your ideas or find your career opportunities on https://auroralabs.dev/. There are some for you even if you don’t have a blockchain background.
Appendix A: Methodological Notes
Time buckets should be read as “end of month” unless otherwise noted, meaning the bucket for “month 12” includes the initial balance on the first day of that month plus any change within that month. “Month 0” is the only bucket which is typically used to represent genesis without any additional time. Distribution streams are different. Some of them (for example, private round investors) are accurate and others (future DAO projects) contain projected values. Amounts are intended to be accurate but may still contain imprecisions and are subject to change. This document is intended to be updated over time to reflect changes in the distribution streams and keep the community up to date about the current AURORA distribution.
Appendix B: Initial distribution and changes applied to it until June 2022
There were 1,000,000,000 Aurora tokens (AURORA) created at Genesis on October 7, 2021. The following allocation was approved by the Aurora DAO:
20% (200 million), unlocked, kept - Community Treasury
16% (160 million), locked, transferred - Aurora Labs long term incentives. Tokens are subjected to a vesting scheme determined by Aurora Labs.
9% (90 million), locked, transferred - Aurora Labs initial equity investors. These tokens are subjected to the unlocking scheme.
3% (30 million), unlocked, transferred - Allocated to Aurora Labs to be distributed to the NEAR ecosystem over the next three years. These tokens should be distributed linearly evenly to the delegators of the Aurora validator. Aurora validator should switch to the following scheme of operations: fees should be equal to 30%, with 10% burned, and 20% used to fund the Rainbow Bridge operations and Aurora RPC.
2% (20 million), locked, transferred - Early AURORA contributors. Allocations should be provided by NEAR Foundation. These tokens should be subjected to the unlocking scheme. NEAR Foundation may implement a vesting scheme for these tokens.
1% (10 million), unlocked, transferred - Allocated to Aurora Labs to be used as incentives for project advisors
1% (10 million), unlocked, transferred - Allocated to be used for bootstrapping the AURORA ecosystem. These tokens should be used for IDO (public sale through one or multiple DEXes), deployment of pools on AMMs, market making, early partnerships, and other activities. IDO parameters should be approved by the DAO.
48% (480 million), unlocked, kept - Kept on the DAO balance for future projects
Aurora IDO was approved by the DAO on 2nd of November 2021. Details of the IDO can be found here. Because of the development of the new staking farm validator, parameters of the Aurora validator have been refined in this post and voted by the DAO on 21st of January, 2022 (multiple proposals) and updated to allow for the rounding bug with this proposal. The unlocking schedule for the private round investors was delayed on 26th of April 2022. Details on the new unlocking scheme can be found here. The unlocking schedule for the Aurora Labs team members was delayed on 24 of June 2022 to support the smoother unlocks of AURORA in the market. Aurora Validator parameters for the 2022-2022 were presented here. The Community Treasury was clarified and unlocking mechanics approved in May 2023. Aurora DAO Council Treasury was defined and unlocking mechanics approved in May 2023.
Not yet implemented changes:
Per-tx AURORA burn initiative was introduced and approved in May 2023, however as the actual mechanics is still in the process of clarifying circulating supply above does not include estimations in respect of this initiative. However, it is expected that total circulating supply will be reduced as a result of its implementation.
Appendix C: Change Log
24 June 2022 - initial version 06 July 2023 - updated version (current).
Powered by its high-performance Ethereum Virtual Machine (the Aurora Engine) and fully trustless bridge (the Rainbow Bridge), Aurora combines the builder-friendly development experience of Ethereum with the modern blockchain performance of the NEAR Protocol to offer an environment for creating highly scalable, carbon-neutral, future-safe, and low-cost Web3 services.
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