Decentralized finance (DeFi) protocol EigenLayer reached its liquid restaking capacity Tuesday night, pushing its total value locked past $1.4 billion.
EigenLayer increased its restaking capacity in the middle of December, and since then the number of liquid staking tokens (LSTs) and ETH deposited into the protocol’s smart contracts has increased more than fivefold from about $250 million.
Liquid staking tokens represent the combined value of a user’s initial deposit into Ethereum’s staking deposit contract plus accrued interest, and can be used across many DeFi platforms as collateral.
The restaking platform went live in June and allows crypto users who are currently staking ETH to restake their LSTs, extending Ethereum’s “cryptoeconomic security to additional applications on the network to earn additional rewards,” according to its documents.
Part of why crypto users have been depositing their LSTs into the new protocol stems from the possibility of EigenLayer airdropping tokens to its depositors. EigenLayer has enacted a points system to measure a user’s contribution to the EigenLayer ecosystem.
Chainlink community ambassador @ChainLinkGod said on January 1 on X, formerly Twitter, that “EigenLayer will be crypto’s largest airdrop to date, particularly when you count the airdrops from Eigen-powered application to restakers.”
Data from blockchain analytics firm DefiLlama shows liquid staking is the largest category within the DeFi ecosystem, with a combined total value locked of around $31 billion.
UPDATE Jan. 3, 10:13 pm: Included ETH as part of the cryptoassets deposited into EigenLayer’s smart contracts.