Puffer already ranks as the third-largest LRT protocol.
Puffer Finance is the latest liquid restaking protocol to burst onto the scene, with the project surging to a nine-figure TVL within one day of launching.
Puffer Finance opened its doors to deposits on Feb. 1, launching a quest and vampire attack seeking to reward users in exchange for converting Lido’s stETH token — the leading liquid staking token (LST) — for its liquid restaking token (LRT), pufETH.
The campaign has proved an impressive success on its debut day, with the protocol already boasting a total value locked (TVL) of $194M, according to DeFi Llama.
LRT sector balloons
Puffer is the latest entrant into the booming LRT space, with the sector ballooning to a more than $1B TVL after sitting at less than $50M at the start of November.
Restaking tokens build on the success of LSTs like stETH, which allow tokenholders to earn Ether staking rewards without operating an Ethereum node. LSTs also allow users to remain liquid, meaning the tokens can be used in DeFi to generate additional yield, or sold instantly to sidestep the usual 28-hour-long delay associated with manually unstaking.
LRTs provide the same benefits but also accrue additional rewards from native restaking on EigenLayer, a protocol allowing stakers to validate third-party services for extra yield on top of staking rewards. Users can access EigenLayer either by depositing LSTs into its capped pools or natively by depositing ETH without limit. LRTs leverage native restaking to provide additional yield to tokenholders.
The LRT sector has exploded in recent months, led by the meteoric success of EtherFi, the pioneering LRT protocol. EtherFi’s TVL currently sits at $608M, up 77% since the start of its DeVamp campaign on Jan. 24. EtherFi’s impressive performance also follows the launch of its “Mega Week” campaign — which offers boosted EigenLayer and EtherFi points ahead of EtherFi’s token generation event in April.
Other leading LRT protocols include Kelp DAO with a $280.5M TVL and Renzo with a $171M TVL. As such, the top four LRT protocols have amassed $1.25B worth of assets, accounting for 59.5% of EigenLayer’s $2.1B TVL.
Ethereum restaking migrates to new chains
The leading LRT protocols are also aiming to bring the bubbling LRT strategy onto new chains.
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In October, EtherFi announced it was working with Polygon to bring wrapped eETH onto the Polygon zkEVM Layer 2 network. EtherFi expects the zkEVM launch will take place in the coming months.
On Jan. 30, Binance Labs announced it had invested in Puffer to support pufETH launching on BNB Chain. On Feb. 1, Renzo also said it has teamed up with the cross-chain interoperability protocol Connext Network, to bring native restaking onto Arbitrum, the leading Ethereum Layer 2.