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NFT Vs DeFi: Top 5 DeFi and NFT projects 2021


Blockchain technology is more popular than ever. The technology behind cryptocurrencies has many uses, and thus, the capabilities of blockchain technology are being constantly explored. Who knew digital art could earn you money? Who knew that traditional finance could have an alternative? Non-fungible tokens (NFTs) and Decentralized finance (DeFi) have made both these scenarios possible. 

The year 2020, is said to be the bullish year for cryptocurrencies. However, apart from the rise in popularity around digital currencies, the other two sub-sectors of blockchain technology also saw unprecedented growth. Non-fungible tokens (NFTs) and decentralized finance (DeFi) were another two sectors that achieved new heights in the previous year. Billions of dollars flowed into decentralized finance, which leverages blockchain technology to provide financial services without the requirement of an intermediary. 

To understand the possibilities that can be realized with these technologies it’s important to understand what these technologies are. The crypto enthusiasts and investors are on a constant lookout for the latest NFTs and top defi projects of 2021. Let’s first understand what is defi and NFT? 

Also Read: What are DeFi Loans?

What is DeFi? and Meaning of NFT

Decentralized finance (DeFi) is a movement that is used to leverage the decentralized networks such that the old financial products are transformed into transparent and trustless protocols that can run without any middlemen. It is also the umbrella term for various projects and applications in the blockchain space that possesses the potential to disrupt the financial world. 

It consists of peer-to-peer protocols that are developed on this decentralized network for easy trading, borrowing, and lending of financial tools. Ethereum network is used as the backbone for most of the defi projects today. These defi projects deliver remarkable speed, security, scalability as well as lower transaction fees. Looking for a detailed overview on what is defi? Explore what is defi along with the top defi tokens of 2021

Non-fungible tokens(NFTs) is a digital asset that represents a real-life entity such as in-game items, art, music, videos, etc. Along with the buy and sell of cryptocurrencies these NFTs are also traded in the digital market. The platform used for their trading usually has the same network as cryptocurrencies. 

Although, NFTs have been in the market since 2014 but have gained unprecedented fame because they have become a vehicle to buy and sell digital art. Since  2017 a sum of $174 million has been spent on non-fungible tokens(NFTs). Before we deep dive into the top NFTs of 2021 it is significant to explore the What are Non-fungible tokens (NFT) and how beginners can leverage them? 

Top 5 DeFi projects 2021 and their Utilities 

DeFi project  Utilities  Market Cap (July 2021)
ChainLink (LINK)
  • Staking 
  • Utility in smart contract 
  • Fees network 
Synthetix (SNX) 
  • Staking as well as collateralizing synthetic assets 
  • Governance 
  • Trading fees 
Dodo (DODO)
  • Staking 
  • Crowdpooling as well as IDO allocation
  • Governance
  • Trading fee discounts 
Pancakeswap (CAKE) 
  • Staking 
  • NFTs auction 
  • Crowdpooling 
Ren (REN) 
  • Acts as a bond to operate on dark node
  • Earn interest through cryptocurrency exchange 


There are many decentralized applications (Dapps) that run on oracle today to interact with several data. The current leader in oracles is ChainLink. The native token of this defi project is LINK. 

A decentralized set is provided by chainLink that runs on smart contracts. This forms a bridge between blockchain applications and real-world data. There is no lock-up schedule or vesting for LINK. The circulating supply of LINK is increased every year by 4-5 %. 

Use-cases for Chainlink (LINK)

Utility in smart contract 
Fees network

Synthetix (SNX) 

Synthetix (SNX) is one of the fastest-growing defi projects. It is a decentralized asset insurance protocol that is built on Ethereum. The native defi token of this defi project is SNX. 

This defi project allows defi enthusiasts to mint synthetic representations of real-world entities in the form of defi tokens. This in turn pegs the value of the asset they are based on. The inflationary supply schedule for Synthetix defi token was introduced in 2019. It shows a weekly decrease in the inflation rate by 1.25%. 

Use-cases of SNX

Staking as well as collateralizing synthetic assets
Trading fees
Yield farming 

Dodo (DODO)

Dodo is an on-chain liquidity provider that possesses the capability to provide stability through proactive market making. This defi project was first developed on the Ethereum network as an ERC20 smart contract but was later expanded on the Binance Smart Chain. 

This defi project manages to offer sufficient liquidity that can be compared to some of the best provided by centralized exchanges (CEX). This liquidity can be used by smart contracts for on-chain transactions such as auctions and liquidations. The total market cap of this defi token is $124 million. According to the release schedule of the dodo token, the circulating supply shall gradually increase to reach 100% by 2025. 

Use-Cases of Dodo

Crowd Pooling as well as IDO allocation
Trading fee discounts 

Pancakeswap (CAKE) 

Pancakeswap is an AMM (Automated Market Maker) decentralized exchange that was built on Binance smart chain contract as its backbone, which needs no KYC.  This defi project received funding from Binance as its acceleration program on Binance smart chain. 

Although PancakeSwap is a clone of Uniswap but has a few new features such as lottery tickets, initial farm offering, and gamification through the use of community teams and leaderboards. The market cap of the native defi token of this project is $5.10 billion. There is no maximum supply for this defi token with inflation of 750,000 cakes each day.

Use-case of Cake

NFTs auction 

Ren (REN) 

REN is a decentralized interoperability protocol that allows the exchange or transfer of crypto and defi tokens across any blockchain. This cross-chain transfer defi protocol does not create wrapped tokens or synthetic tokens but allows the transfer of liquidity from an ecosystem to the other. The most astonishing feature about this defi project is that it does not use any smart contracts. 

The REN defi protocol operates just like any other machine. Thus, this allows users to make any request as they wish and whenever they want. The REN machine can be integrated into many defi projects without the requirement of KYC to provide them with liquidity. This Virtual machine is significant for hodlers. This defi project allows people to supply their bitcoins in HODL to lending protocols and earn interest rather than just keeping them idle. 

Fees are earned by nodes during the exchange of cryptocurrency through Ren virtual machine. 

Use-cases of REN 

Acts as a bond to operate on dark node
Earn interest through a cryptocurrency exchange 

Non-Fungible Tokens: What are NFTs used for? 

Blockchain technology and NFT have provided a new way of monetizing the work of content creators and artists. Artists no longer need to rely on galleries to sell their art. All, they need to do is to create a non-fungible token (NFT) and sell it directly to the consumer through defi marketplaces. Along with that, the artists can even program certain royalties in their work such that they shall receive a percentage of the sell, whenever their art is sold to any new owner. 

Different defi marketplaces allow artists and creators to just not sell NFT but also create their own. Many celebrities have already jumped into the NFT bandwagon. Snoop Dogg and Lindsay Lohan have already released a few NFTs such as artwork, unique memories, and moments in the form of scrutinized, NFTs. 

You can read a complete guide on what non-fungible tokens are and how to create them on our blog. 

Top 3 Most popular NFT projects 2021

NFT project  USP Market cap (July 2021) 
NBA TopShot  Specific steals, blocks, and hoops are now being immortalized from the history of the NBA with the help of this NFT project  $1.1 Billion
Niftex NIFTEX allows users to buy fractions of NFTs rather than buying a complete NFT.  $28.27 million
MintBase Mintbase helps users to mint NFTs $1 million 

1. NBA TopShot

One of the best things that NFTs have proven is that anything can be sold in digital format. NBA TopShot is an NFT platform that sells some specific moments from the history of the NBA. Specific steals, blocks,  and hoops are now being immortalized from the history of the A with the help of NFTs. This platform received a lot of recognition. Mark Cuban was also a certified user of this platform. 

The biggest driver of this NFT community is the interaction between NBA fans who agree to buy certain moments from the history of the game. Experts say that these NFTs have the potential to enter other sports as well. 

2. Niftex

With the hype that the NFT market has received, many users wish to buy profitable NFTs. The millions of dollars spent on buying each NFT can make them inaccessible to the common man. Here comes the vital role of NIFTEX.  NIFTEX allows users to buy fractions of NFTs rather than buying a complete NFT. 

This signifies that even with a small amount of money, users can profit from the NFT market. The new features allow the users to earn royalties even on a fraction of trades. Experts believe that NFTs are very much on their way to the top and the market will be accessible and democratized for the masses. 

3. Mintbase 

While there are a lot of NFT marketplaces that allow users to buy, sell and invest in NFTs, Mintbase helps users to mint NFTs. Practically anything can be easily turned into NFTs and the use of the same is not limited to big players. The new features added to the marketplace allow sharing of royalties between thousand people and also allows creation on both Near and Ethereum blockchain. 

Summing it Up!

DeFi and NFT have already started to take over the world steadily. The popularity of these projects has gained so much momentum that there are conferences dedicated to them. Just like Art Basel, an NFT art exhibition took place in Miami in June 2021 called NFT BAZL. The event saw many NFT collectors, artists, and investors. 

DeFi on the other hand has many use-cases that are expanding the horizons for the crypto world. Experts believe that decentralized finance has the potential to change the world completely. 

Looking for some DeFi related doubts to be solved? DCXLearn, a complete blockchain, and cryptocurrency course can be referred for further clarification. 

A journey of a thousand miles begins with the first step. CoinDCX, the simplest crypto investment app of India, lists some of the safest, to begin with, crypto coins and defi tokens. Education is important before investment, stay updated with CoinDCX Pro, India’s largest cryptocurrency exchange.

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