LayerZero's ZRO token airdrop with mandatory donations goes live

The ZRO token airdrop mandates a 10 cent donation per token claim, sparking mixed reactions.

ZRO token
"ZRO Claims Is Live" Source: LayerZero Foundation on X.

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Claims for LayerZero’s new ZRO token went live today, but the airdrop mechanics required a 10 cent donation for each token participants wish to receive. This initiative, announced via an X post, ties token claims to donations directed to the Protocol Guild, aiming to align long-term commitment with the LayerZero protocol.

LayerZero emphasized the innovative aspect of this approach, saying that by donating, eligible recipients “show long-term alignment with the LayerZero protocol and a commitment to the future of crypto.”

The foundation will match donations up to $10 million, marking the first instance of a mandatory donation for airdrop claims in the crypto industry.

The reception from the crypto community has been mixed. Some users disapproved of the mandatory donation, while others appreciated the support for development. The airdrop will see 85 million ZRO tokens available for distribution, with over 50% reserved for investors and core contributors under a three-year vesting schedule.

Despite some dissatisfaction, LayerZero’s ZRO token is highly anticipated, trading at $4.27 in pre-market futures. It is set to launch on exchanges like Binance at noon UTC, although it appears that the exchange has postponed this to 13:00 UTC.

The LayerZero airdrop eligibility checker, released a day before, has also drawn criticism from DeFi users. Many expressed frustration over small allocations despite significant usage of the protocol. The allocation process appeared to favor holders of specific NFTs, such as Pudgy Penguins and Kanpai Pandas, over those with high transaction counts or Gh0stly Gh0sts NFTs.

Approximately 1.28 million wallets are eligible for the airdrop, with 8.5% of the total community allocation of 23.8% set to be distributed initially. The remaining tokens will be distributed over the next three years through various incentives and rewards.

The pre-market valuation for ZRO stands at $4.5, equating to a fully diluted value of $4.5 billion. However, the state of airdrop farming is causing increasing frustration among users, with dwindling returns on investment and oversaturation of protocols. founder Cobie commented on these growing concerns, saying: “If you’re a founder, IMO, you’re probably thinking about not doing an airdrop at all these days; the downsides are much greater than the upsides now.”

LayerZero also received criticism when it demanded Sybil airdrop farmers to self-report. After this, LayerZero CEO Bryan Pellegrino confirmed that up to 100,000 wallets self-reported their Sybil activities.

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