EigenLayer Launches Mainnet: Ethereum Restaking Protocol Goes Live Amid High Expectations

EigenLayer Launches Mainnet: Ethereum Restaking Protocol Goes Live Amid High Expectations
Table of Contents


  • Mainnet Launch: EigenLayer, a significant Ethereum restaking protocol, has launched on the Ethereum mainnet with over $13 billion in assets, although some features are still in development.
  • Pending Features: Key functionalities like in-protocol payments and slashing mechanisms are expected later in 2024, with no specific timeline provided for these updates.
  • Market Impact: Despite the absence of restaking rewards, EigenLayer has become the second-largest DeFi protocol with a substantial user base, and its AVS, EigenDA, is now live on Ethereum.

EigenLayer, an Ethereum restaking protocol with over $13 billion in assets, has officially launched on the Ethereum mainnet. However, it’s important to note that several key features are still under development and are expected to be released later in 2024.

The launch was announced in a blog post on April 9. The post also mentioned that in-protocol payments to operators from actively validated services (AVS), such as apps and cross-chain bridges, are yet to be implemented. Another feature, known as slashing, a mechanism where validators are penalized by having their staked crypto confiscated if they fail to perform their duties correctly, is also in the pipeline.

These features are slated for release “later this year”, following a period of development and stabilization of the EigenLayer marketplace. The protocol has not provided a specific timeline for these updates. As of now, restakers can delegate their restaked ETH balance to EigenLayer operators, who then operate the AVS.

In response to the announcement, Christine Kim, the vice president of research at Galaxy Digital, queried about the absence of restaking rewards, implying that this feature is still not available.

EigenLayer’s AVS and the Absence of Restaking Rewards

EigenLayer Launches Mainnet: Ethereum Restaking Protocol Goes Live Amid High Expectations

Sreeram Kannan, the founder of the crypto restaking protocol, announced on the social media platform, X, that EigenDA, their data availability solution, is now live on Ethereum.

EigenDA, which operates as an actively validated service (AVS), is built upon EigenLayer. With its introduction to Ethereum, EigenDA is set to compete with other data storage service providers, including Celestia.

Following EigenLayer’s launch on the Ethereum mainnet, a new feature has been introduced that enables restakers to delegate their restaked balance to their chosen EigenLayer operators who are registered to run AVSs. The protocol also mentioned that AVSs outside of Eigen Labs’ EigenDA are eligible to register with them.

Even before its official launch on the mainnet, EigenLayer has gained significant popularity among users and has risen to become the second-largest DeFi protocol as per DeFiLlama. The protocol has managed to lock in billions of dollars in total value (TVL). EigenLayer, as a blockchain restaking service provider, offers points to those who deposit, which has drawn a substantial user base. 

These users speculate that these points could potentially be connected to a future token airdrop. Last year, Eigen Labs, the team responsible for the development of the protocol, successfully raised $100 million in funding from Andreessen Horowitz (a16z).


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