What is DigixDAO?
DigixDAO plans to create a new cryptocurrency backed by actual bars of gold. DigixDAO is the Digix Decentralized Autonomous Organization, a decentralized group of participants making decisions about how to grow the Digix Global Ecosystem. Participants purchased DGD tokens in the “first ever crowdsale on the Ethereum Blockchain.” The DGD token holders will make decisions related to any proposals submitted to DigixDAO. As a reward for voting and decision making in the growth of Digix, DGD holders receive rewards related to DGX, a token that represents 1 gram of gold. Their tokenization of gold aims to provide stability and store of value in the cryptocurrency space. Bitcoin is often referred to as digital gold, but in this guide, we’ll look at how DigixDAO digitizes your ownership of actual gold.
Proof of Asset
In order to distribute DGX tokens representing 1g of gold, Digix utilizes Proof of Asset (PoA). The process involves recording possession of an asset on the Ethereum blockchain and the creation of PoA Asset Cards. “The asset cards are certified using sequential digital signatures from the entities in the chain of custody, namely, the Vendor, Custodian, Auditor, which are further validated with proof of purchase and depository receipts provided and uploaded onto the InterPlanetary File System for permanent record.”
The Vendor, ValueMax Singapore, is a publicly listed company that sells London Bullion Market Associate certified gold bullion bars.
The independent Auditor, Bureau Veritas Inspectorate, checks the quality and quantity of the gold every quarter.
The participating Custodian Vault, The Safe House, is located in Singapore. Their vault can store up to 30 tons of gold, but in the future, Digix will look to open more vaults around the world for regulatory redundancy.
In total the Proof of Asset Cards stored on the Ethereum blockchain contain:
Timestamp of card creation
SKU of the gold bar
Bar serial number
Chain of custody digital signatures (Vendor, Custodian, Auditor)
Storage Fees due
Now that we know how the gold is secured, it’s time to make the DGX tokens. DGX tokens are created by a smart contract that receives PoA cards and generates DGX tokens for each gram of gold. For example, if a 100g PoA card is sent to the smart contract, 100 DGX tokens are created and sent to an Ethereum wallet. This means Digix doesn’t engage in fractional reserves. Each DGX token always represents 1g of gold and is divisible to 0.001g.
The DGX tokens come with two sets of fees associated with storing and securing gold. There’s a demurrage fee that comes out to be 0.60% annually and also a 0.13% transaction fee when transferring DGX with an Ethereum wallet. However, Digix will wave the storage fees during the first year of operation.
We’ll discuss later how the DGX fees are passed onto DGD holders.
Instead of using the PoA cards to generate DGX tokens, the reverse process is also available. Recasting DGX tokens into PoA cards and then physical gold bars will cost you 1 DGX token. The gold bar you claim must also be a multiple of 100 grams and you can choose to either pick up your gold bar in person or, depending on the country, have it sent to you.
The DGX tokens are the crux of the DigixDAO and aim to solve two problems. They want to make it easier and cheaper to own and liquidate gold assets while also providing much-needed stability to cryptocurrencies. While not available for purchase yet, the DGX tokens are expected to be released in the first quarter of 2018.
Holders of DGD can vote on how the DigixDAO funds are allocated. DGD token holders can make “active managerial decisions to any proposals submitted to DigixDAO.”
However, there’s some confusion about the rewards for DGD holders who vet and approve project proposals. The Digix Global FAQ says “each token rewards you with a prorated share of DigixDAO’s transaction fee on Digix Gold, denoted in DGX gold tokens.”
There are also plans to include the “demurrage fees as part of the rebate structure to DGD token holders.”
The FAQ also says for “participation on proposals, there will be a reward with DGX tokens.”
However, in February 2018 the Digix team posted on Medium “we would like to emphasize further that DGD do not provide ‘passive income’, nor ‘dividends’, ‘rights to profits of the commission of DGX traded.’”
The post mentions instead you can receive Digix rewards such as “DGX discounts or rebates.”
It’s unclear at this time how much the rebates will be worth in terms of obtaining DGX. What is clear, regardless of what the rewards end up being, is they are not received passively and must be claimed quarterly. After the DGX tokens are launched, there will be further information on how DGD holders can start voting in the DGD governance and receive their rewards.
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