Celo Community Proposals and Treasury Overview

This thread summarizes the Celo Community Treasury and Governance since the inception of Celo Mainnet in April 2020. This overview provides context that can help improve Governance and Community Treasury guidelines to support the development of the Celo Ecosystem.

Call to action: We’re eager to hear your thoughts about Celo Community Treasury budgeting and spending. What are the types of initiatives you deem high return on investment? What kinds of initiatives would you like to see less of? How would you like Celo Community Treasury to approach spending? Please share your thoughts!

View the Community Accounting Dashboard ←

Celo Governance
Over the past 3+ years, Celo has Governed its Chain and Ecosystem through on-chain Governance. Through a total of 142 Celo Governance Proposals, Celo has made different types of decisions through on-chain votes.

Until Q4 2022, the CGPs focused primarly on Celo Protocol, Infrastructure, and Mento-related governance, with Celo Ecosystem initiatives being led by other organizations such as Prezenti, Celo Foundation, and Celo Camp.

In 2023, there was an acceleration of program proposals and budget requests to the Celo Community Treasury. A complete overview of the Celo Governance proposals, vote outcomes, and a short description can be found here.

Current Programs and Estimate Budget
Celo Governance has initiated 15+ ecosystem initiatives through the passing of CGPs. These initiatives can be categorized as such:

  • Ecosystem Programs to accelerate the development of Celo, such as Climate Collective, Credit Collective, and Prezenti.
  • Regional DAO initiatives to accelerate adoption and growth, with Africa and Europe coming to the end of their initial season and Latam and Korea projected to have resources for 2024.
  • Infrastructure and DAPP development such as the Chainlink SCALE Progam, cLabs L2 proposal, and the deployment of Centrifuge.

Based on the ongoing initiatives and assuming spending to remain constant, the Celo Community Treasury is allocating approximately ~15M CELO or ~8.25M USD at current prices to run the current initiatives.

Community Reserve Size and Ecosystem Runway
At the time of writing, the Celo Community Treasury had 26,961,138 CELO + 1,716,054 cEUR in its reserve for an approximate total of $16,697,409. However, some of the CELO and cEUR are already earmarked to passed proposals and can be claimed by the proposers.

Following CGP102, Mento will be returning a total of 120M CELO, 25M of which have already been sent to the Celo Community Treasury.

Assuming the yearly community treasury spend, and Celo price remains constant, the Community Treasury would have the following number of months left to fund operations:

  • Approx runway current treasury: 24 Months
  • Approx runway if all Celo returned: 98 Months
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Thank you for the detailed overview. This brings awareness and clarity.

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Thanks for the good work, Luuk. As Mila said this work does bring awareness and clarity.

I’ll share my immediate feelings and thoughts in the most candid way possible:

  • Current runway (24 months) is ridiculously low. More Celo has be returned!
  • We spent $8.2M and no Celo Connect to show? I know we have Celo Salon during ETH CC but we must have a proper community get-together just focused around the Celo / ReFi community. We can’t miss this again… Celo Connect 2024 needs to happen…
  • Based on what I’m seeing here, CC spent more than cLabs and that’s just mind-blowing, given that cLabs is mandated to do the most important project of CELO which is moving to L2. Where can I learn more so I can better understand how these community funds are being invested? I wasn’t aware at all of this volume of investment, it’s a bit shocking to see these numbers side by side.
  • Is the Minipay partnership investment included in here? Or where should I be looking at?

These are my initial comments.

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Hi @LuukDAO - this is a huge super high value initiative. A few immediate questions.

  1. It would be interesting to see CGPs by those that request funding vs. those that aren’t affiliated with funding. This will also create better clarity around who is contributing to Celo without requesting funds.

  2. For “Ongoing Initiatives” - did any of the current initiatives apply for funding beyond a 12 month time frame? Does the 15M CELO annual spend assume that all of these initiatives are funded at the current level in 2024 and onward? Which initiatives are currently being counted towards the 24 month runway?

  3. Ecosystem DAOs - It seems like this needs way more strategic thought and oversight - and potentially a really clear area of where Celo could be returned. A few of them appear active, a few seem like they haven’t done anything and its dead money sitting. Are any of the ecosystem DAOs doing regular reporting on milestones achieved? Are the grants themselves tranched or linked to any sort of KPIs? I am thinking how we as a community will analyze the effectiveness of this next year. As a project builder and founder it has been really challenging to understand how to find and work with the different regional DAOs, and understand how we align our project objectives to their funding and “ecosystem mandate”. It is pretty disappointing to see all of the funding that is allocated to the Regional DAOs, but feel like there is no actual way to operationalize those funds to actually market Celo projects in those regions. Not to cast blame, but as an example between funds allocated and funds used well, even though GoodDollar is the top project on Celo for usage the only ecosystem DAO we ever “worked with” is Celo Africa, which seems to be doing the most active activities & reporting. None of the other DAOs have contacted our project or community members to host a workshop, invited to attend an event, host a GoodDollar workshop, etc. And this is all while we and other projects building on Celo are extremely funding strapped model but actually delivering usage. It seems like smaller budgets for ecosystem DAOs and allocating budget for founder summits or events would be in the interest of the community long-term.

  4. Ecosystem Programs - it would be good to know how much of the spend for ecosystem programs went towards software & dapp development vs. marketing / ecosystem.

  5. DeFi primitives - as a builder on Celo, we really suffer from lacking basic, functional DeFi protocols and primitives on Celo. Eg. savings / loans protocols, more DEX optionality, and overall efforts to increase and encourage liquidity for the small market cap tokens. I’d like to see this as a key strategic priority for the Celo Community fund - to get the top dapps and protocols across the Web3 deployed on Celo. It will also increase the chance of bringing their users and liquidity.

  6. My overall reaction is that Celo is a really strong brand amongst like-minded thinkers, but we have struggled to breakthrough to compete with other L2s on Ethereum in terms of dapps and liquidity. The use of the community fund reflects that.

For example, why is Gitcoin running the Climate rounds on Optimism instead of Celo? Especially when we are allocating over $2.7 mil to climate initiatives? This is like a major disconnect between what products will actually create the right market acceptance, bring the right audience, and right usage. How is it that liquidity for Celo projects is such a known and open issue in the ecosystem and no community proposals or funds were allocated to address it? It’s like we are lacking product / market fit for our builders.

Looking forward, my immediate reaction is less money should be spent on marketing and ecosystem initiatives and more should be committed towards developer tooling & dapp deployment and development on Celo. Of course, this also can and should be initiated by a process designed to identifying the biggest problems and challenges facing “the community” - aka the people building on Celo, and coming to some sense of shared priority of what to fund and build.

  1. I recommend as a community to halt any on-chain fund requests above $20k USD until there is better alignment on the strategic mandate of the community fund.

  2. What do you see as the next steps? How can we help?

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Hi @pcbo thanks for the comments!

  1. Agreed, I anticipate Mento to be able to complete the entire transfer of funds as soon as we have better governance processes and some spending guidelines.

  2. I can attest that Celo Salon was solid and brought a lot of value and buzz to Celo; however, it didn’t pack the same degree of “Celo Unity” feel as Celo Connect in 2022. I’m a big fan of hosting a Celo Connect in 2024 and eager to help realize this in any way I can.

  3. CC’s budget request has indeed been significant. I believe they aren’t actually spending at the proposed rate, but it would be good to get an update from @AnnaClimateCollect on the current budget and timeline!

  4. This overview does not include a potential Minipay partnership budget.

I’ll try to make a more realistic budget request estimate in the coming days! If any groups are able to share a budget range for their 2024 plans up front, that would be great.

@Matt_CeloCamp @Thylacine any drafts in the pipeline?

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Thanks for taking the time to go through the thread and leaving such good questions @therealstone

  1. I see the key question here: What type(s) of funding can the Community Fund provide and under which conditions.

  2. Correct, I estimated based on the current burn rates and assumed the current proposal would continue. The only proposals with a multi-year or no clear ending are: Chainlink (which has been streaming below the expected rate, which is good) and Credit Collective. Some projects are funding for a chunk of 2024 already, including Climate Collective, cLabs and Celo Latam. Whereas the others would have to submit new 2024 budgets (ideally after the passing of some improved guidelines).

  3. Yes, I’ve been actively getting in touch with the representatives from Celo Africa @Khadeeejah @mabwa and Celo Latam @MilaRioja @Santicristobal and the people from Celo EU to allign on standardized tooling, shared objectives, increased collaboration, and accounting/reporting standards.

Given the regional DAOs started as new experiments in 2023, each with a newly formed team and a specific focus - it could be the case that GoodDollar hasn’t been directly asked or invited to specific things. While I’m 100% in favor of improving coordination in 2024, I believe every regional DAO is willing to discuss and find the best way to amplify any project on Celo.

In the case of Celo EU - there’s is a Collaborate button on the Webpage which allows you to propose any program and get in touch with the team!

  1. I know Prezenti has allocated significant builder grants. The previous Foundation grants also focussed a lot on Tooling and DAPPS. I do believe more resources could flow, potentially through direct Ecosystem Grants, to infrastructure and DAPPS.

  2. In my experience, critical infrastructure has been coming to Celo - from Uniswap and Curve, to Safe and soon AAVE. I would agree that the timing could have been better, as it would have been great to have these around in the past cycle. What are some of the key primitives you would like to get on to Celo and what would be the use-cases?

An example: I’ve personally used Coinshift a lot on other networks and have worked with the team to have them launch on Celo soon. No incentives, no proposal - just building a relationship and validating demand. If there are tools or dapps that you need, it would be good to share your needs as others might have comparable needs and could result in a pull effect!

  1. How would you imagine setting up a builder-focused distribution system? What would you suggest we optimize for?

  2. 100% agree with this, and I’ve mentioned this before.

  3. It would be important for Celo to wrap up the Governance improvements and budget allocation strategy soon - ideally in the next 3 weeks. The main element I feel we need to settle on as a community is how much we want to include in a potential Ecosystem Budget. For example, I could imagine Grants, Incubation, Regional DAOs, and Ecosystem Builders coordinating in synergy and falling under a shared budget - however, I’m not sure how to deal with outliers such as the Minipay proposal and large Infrastructure asks such as Chainlink. If we can keep them as a separate flow that goes directly to the on-chain fund (after raising rigor for submitting a proposal) we might be able to progress faster.

You can help by sharing your perspective on what you think a realistic Ecosystem Budget approach should look like and some input related to the Builder tooling and resources you mentioned, how would you envision it!

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Hey Anna! Great to see you here. TY for sharing your general remarks about the DAOs. Made me want to chime in and contribute :slight_smile:

Before going deeper on the topics posed, I just wanted to take a step back and highlight, as per forum posts/proposals that the regional DAOs at the moment DO have different scopes.

For instance, Celo LatAm scope is to become LatAm-focused Venture Studio, and is currently running low budget experiments.

The Venture Studio has no mandate to make up for “ecosystem initiatives” of any kind (DAO did not pledge to be/do/centralize any Founder-related budget or initiatives, contact, nor marketing strategies at this point. It has however a specific budget aimed at Founder’s collabs, a cool topic for another forum post and opportunity as seems to be smth you could be interested on).

I know you did not mention Celo LatAm (neither Luuk) on your comment but just wanted to clarify what do you believe this “shared mandate” scope between “regional” DAOs is for two main reasons:

  • Seems there is an expectation that all DAOs “received” the same “mandate” and must perform certain activities (what may not currently be aligned or related to the “why and how” such initiatives came about to be)
  • As the LatAm DAO is still in soft launch mode, this discussion brings an opportunity to voice (and repeat to sediment) whats IN/OUT of the scope in a clear manner, and make sure requests/expectations are directed to the correct parties.

On another note super excited to start liaising with @LuukDAO/others and now you too about ecosystem-wide thoughts on a much needed EVOLUTION through COORDINATION and wide COLLABORATION. Topics as transparency, accountability, focus, strategy sure come in handy for a community approach to the current obstacles and opportunities.

I am happy to take more time of my sabbatical to learn more from you, engage, share my learnings during these years in cLabs and the Foundation + dedicate more to the DAO (currently as limited advisor).

If you can share any further insight on this “mandate” and current expectations I would appreciate so I can think better/clearer on how to contribute to the latter comments on your feedback.

Humbled to be building by your side @therealstone @LuukDAO @pcbo

Mila

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Hi @MilaRioja @LuukDAO Thank you for taking the time to reply.

  1. Thank you for taking the time to explain the different mandates / expectations of the regional DAOs - this, of course, will be key to evaluating the use of funds & committed funds moving ahead.

  2. Agree Luuk that Regional DAOs / Ecosystem builders could fall under the same budget (w a call for founder events / Celo Connect seems popular). Maybe we want break out an area of budget for grants & tooling (grants to fund expansions of protocols on Celo & incubation of ideas).

  3. I’m also not sure how to deal with outlier proposals yet, but one foundational step here seems to be a shared mission-statement around what is the mission of the on-chain fund and a working framework for evaluating proposals accordingly (Luuk, as you said). Maybe this will create the logic for “mini community funds” which will have different objectives, KPIs. Hopefully this will create greater alignment and buy-in around how well these proposals fit the stated mission of the how the fund is to be used.

Thanks for that clarification on Celo LatAm @MilaRioja, I had no idea it was created as a venture studio.

I know it may seem trivial, but in this case I think a renaming / branding would have aided communication of Celo LatAm mission. I think the casual reader would see “Celo ” and think it’s more like a community granted arm of Celo’s mission (in whatever capacity) in that area.

I actually welcome the differentiation of Celo LatAm’s remit here, I think there’s too much duplication in these “do Celo stuff, but in XXX region” disbursements.

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Hi @therealstone! Awesome to continue the chat.

Re. point 1 I think more talking could be necessary to understand external expectations/internal drive of each DAO.

Re. point 2 also agree with your shared view.

Re point 3, maybe you want to check this out. Its an old excerpt of a strategic document that mentioned smth like such “mini funds” and how they could potentially work, deriving from a shared mission and strategy, once localized to specific regions and realities. Unfortunately this is a strategic document I built around 2.5-3y ago - note we did not even use the word REFI yet on the first PDF screenshot LOL -, I don’t have access to it on my sabbatical, otherwise would love to share and see if we could iterate. I also drafted some updates with the help of peers + feedback a SWOT analysis for LatAm and some key countries. so we could start thinking about localization, including with suggested budgets considering countries maturities and opportunities with ecosystem founders.

Just an extra note that I will eventually love the opportunity to brainstorm together.

@Thylacine Hi TY for your comment. Hope to have more to share soon with the upcoming report and request for feedback. For now if you want to see this I think will share more light on the topic of the VS. When it comes to re-branding I could not agree more and I HOPE the new report and rebranding about to come out address and resolve some of these needs in a creative fashion!

Hello @therealstone this is Alejandra Incubator Manager at Celo Incuba, We are most humbled to launch the first cohort of Celo Incuba, the Latin-America-focused incubator, sponsored by Celo LatAm DAO “CeLatam”. To start with the right foot, we would be thrilled to have you be part of this initiative. As you have thrived with your project bringing your regenerative purpose to Celo and leading the way, we wanted to invite you to be part of this cohort by helping LatAm founders on their journey. Pls let me know if you would like to join and have a call. :smiley:

Update April 2024
The Celo Treasury Dashboard has been updated and shows a more positive picture.

Due to the increasing CELO price and the passing of CGP115 and CGP118, the estimated current balance of the Celo Community Treasury is as follows:

Current Holdings
24.843.170 CELO
8.909.237 cUSD
1.190.260 cEUR
$36.776.910 worth of value

Mento Reserve Returning CELO
As a result of CGP118, Mento’s updated estimated repayment for the 10M cUSD minted is ~11-12M CELO. If prices remain around current levels, we can expect Mento Governance to return at least 83M CELO to the Celo Community Treasury.

Treasury Runway
Based on the above information and using the 2023 estimates as calculated in November, we get to the following number of months left to fund operations:

  • Approx runway current treasury: 54 Months
  • Approx runway if all Celo returned: 168 Months

Overall, this is a significant improvement from the state of the Treasury in November.

Commitments made but not yet claimed
17.413.249 CELO
531.803 cUSD
1.100.055 cEUR

The above tokens are already committed to addresses following a successful proposal but haven’t been claimed from the Community Treasury yet. While the total number to be claimed in CELO will likely be lower as a result of increasing CELO prices, it is essential to note that:

  • Only about 7.5M CELO in the Community Treasury is unallocated.
  • There is no remaining cEUR to be allocated.

Celo Governance should consider avoiding potential friction in the future where the Community Treasury allocates more tokens than it controls, potentially leading to stakeholders being incentivized to claim their tokens far in advance of the work to be delivered.

  1. Work towards closing or reducing some ongoing streams requested at much lower CELO valuations (e.g., 50c or connected to the inactive proposal).
  2. Plan a new repayment by Mento Governance to increase the number of CELO in the Community Treasury.

As always, I hope this update informs stakeholders and kickstarts some healthy conversation.

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