Balancer (BAL) breaks into the Top 25, driven by a spike in developer activity that likely stems from its collaboration with Aave (AAVE) on the Aave-Balancer Asset Manager.
Who Is In, Who Is Out?
Overall industry health can be assessed by taking the average FCAS of the 25 top projects. This overall industry health metric works as a good proxy for how the industry is doing as a whole. In the last month, the average FCAS score increased 5 points.
Figure 1. Overall Industry Health
February Witnesses Impressive DeFi Growth
Figure 2. Ethereum Transactions by Transaction Type
FCAS scores reflect the recent DeFi activity and are sensitive to accelerated developer activity in a number of major projects. While token price and liquidity garner the majority of headlines, active developer contributions are one of the strongest signals of healthy DeFi projects. Balancer is one clear example of that.
Balancer-Aave Collaboration Pays Dividends for FCAS Score
Enabling this type of partnership requires a lot of developer work. We see this reflected in Balancer’s code contributions over the past month, visible in the bottom right of Figure 3:
Figure 3. Code Contributions at Balancer
After a lull in December and early January (coders taking time off for the holidays, perhaps?), Balancer’s codebase saw a spate of activity. While it’s impossible to know for sure, it is reasonable to assume that this activity was related to the AAVE collaboration and the dev work necessary to make it go. As evidence, take a look at the recent rise in Aave’s developer score and overall FCAS score. Both scores go up significantly, which supports the hypothesis that Aave was working on something big during the same time period as Balancer.
Figure 4. Aave - FCAS Score and Developer Score
Over the past month, Balancer scores highly on user activity and does well in terms of market maturity, but neither metric changed substantially in February. However, Balancer’s developer activity rose significantly enough to propel the project’s overall FCAS score into the top 25.
Figure 5. Balancer - User Activity Score and Market Maturity Score
Figure 5. Balancer’s Overall FCAS Score
Aave: Coming Soon?
As we have seen, Aave’s developer community was just as active in February as Balancer’s. Barring a severe reversal, we expect this increased activity to result in Aave’s appearance on the FCAS 25 list next month. The FCAS methodology rewards consistency: demonstrating project health via high performance in successive months is necessary to earn inclusion in the FCAS 25. In other words, the very best crypto projects don’t just reach the top of the mountain — they tend to stay there.