ZKsync, a leading layer-2 scaling solution for the Ethereum network, is getting ready to distribute a total of 3.675 billion ZK tokens as part of its widely-awaited airdrop of ZK tokens to reward early adopters and die-hard community members who have stood the test of time and have supported the project since the get-go. Depending on the demand for the tokens, some eligible users may be able to cash in hundreds or even thousands of dollars as it is one of the most highly anticipated airdrops of the year.

The airdrop accounts for 17.5% of the token’s total supply of 21 billion and is scheduled to take place next week. Eligible wallets will have until January 3, 2025, to claim their corresponding ZK tokens.

A snapshot of all crypto wallets holding ZK tokens was taken on March 24, 2024, when the ZKsync Era mainnet celebrated its first anniversary. You can check your eligibility in just a few seconds through the ZKsync website.

The token will be distributed among two groups of users. The majority of the allocation will go to users – those who simply hold ZK tokens already. This group will account for 89% of the total.

Meanwhile, contributors, which include developers, researchers, companies who supported the project throughout its history, and other devotees will also receive their share of the airdrop, making up for the remaining 11% of the total allocation.

Final Allocation Will Depend on Users’ Past Engagement and Transactions

To determine how many tokens each wallet receives, the ZKSync Foundation has developed a system that assigns points to users based on their actions. For example, users earned points for providing liquidity to DeFi protocols, trading ZK tokens, making donations to the project, and interacting with the protocol’s smart contracts.

Reportedly, the minimum allocation of ZK tokens that each wallet will receive stands at 917. The airdrop will not have conditions like lock-up periods or vesting schedules, meaning that users will be able to trade their assets right after they receive them.

Alex Gluchowski, the founder of Matter Labs – the company that created the layer-two protocol – highlighted that this is primarily a “community governance airdrop” that aims to make ZKsync a truly decentralized blockchain protocol.

The maximum number of ZK tokens to be airdropped to a certain wallet will be 100,000 to avoid overconcentration. Moreover, Gluchowski commented that the developing team hopes that the airdrop will encourage users to further engage with the protocol’s governance decision and “become active members of the community”.

“Community is everything,” Gluchowski stressed.

According to pre-market prices compiled by Aevo, the value of ZK tokens stands at $0.66, which would result in a fully diluted value (FDV) of around $2.5 billion for the airdrop – this would exceed the total value locked (TVL) of the ZKSync Era protocol by more than three times.

Matter Labs employees will also be receiving a 16.1% share of the token while investors will be granted 17.2%. Those tokens will have a lock-up period of a year that will result in lower volatility and selling pressure for ZK.

Prioritizing “Real People First” and Fostering Decentralized Governance

The ZKsync Association stated in a press release: “Awarding more tokens in the airdrop than to the Matter Labs team and investors is more than a symbolic decision for the community.”

With the ZKsync governance system launching in the coming weeks, the community will have the largest supply of liquid tokens to propose and decide on protocol upgrades and changes.

This emphasis on community empowerment and decentralized governance aligns with the core principles of blockchain technology and fosters a vibrant and engaged ecosystem where users have a direct stake in the protocol’s future.

Gluchowski said that the airdrop “prioritizes humans and puts real people first.”

Building a Vibrant Ecosystem: The Rise of Airdrops in Crypto

The ZK token airdrop from ZKsync is part of a broader trend in the cryptocurrency space, where projects distribute tokens to users and contributors to reward early adoption, foster community engagement, and incentivize participation in governance structures.

biggest crypto aidrops in history

Airdrops have become increasingly popular due to their ability to generate buzz, attract new users, and create a sense of ownership and commitment among recipients. By distributing tokens to active participants, projects like ZKsync aim to build a loyal and invested community that can contribute to the protocol’s growth and development. Naturally, users love them too because they can be extremely lucrative.

Moreover, airdrops serve as a powerful marketing and adoption tool, helping projects gain visibility and traction in the highly competitive cryptocurrency market. As users receive tokens, they are usually more inclined to further promote the project, participate in its ecosystem, and potentially become long-term supporters and advocates.

Crypto airdrops seem like ‘free money’ by those who don’t understand their purpose. However, to be eligible for most airdrops, users and investors must have been involved in their development and growth for a while. Sometimes that just means interacting with an app a few times while other times it requires a daunting series of tasks and requirements.

Some of the most notable airdrops in history according to data compiled by CoinGecko include:

  • Uniswap: The largest and most valuable airdrop to date. The team allocated a total of 400 UNI tokens to each user who ever transacted through its decentralized exchange before September 2020. In total, the airdrop was valued at more than $6 billion.
  • ApeCoin: Yuga Labs, the company behind the popular non-fungible tokens (NFTs) called Bored Apes rewarded its community by airdropping its ecosystem token – ApeCoin (APE) to all NFT holders back in 2022. This airdrop was valued at $3.5 billion.
  • dYdX: Similar to Uniswap, this decentralized exchange completed a $2 billion airdrop back in 2021 that benefitted users who relied on its platform.

The Bigger Picture: Fueling Innovation and Adoption of Web3 Infrastructure

Beyond the immediate benefits for ZKsync and its community, this airdrop highlights the broader impact of such initiatives on the Web3 ecosystem. By empowering users and fostering decentralized governance, projects like ZKsync are paving the way for a more inclusive future in the growing landscape of decentralized applications (dApps) and blockchain technology.

As the demand for scalable and efficient solutions continues to grow, layer 2 networks like ZKsync play a crucial role in addressing the limitations of base-layer blockchains. This includes overcoming Ethereum’s scalability challenges.

By providing faster and cheaper transactions, ZKsync enhances user experience and makes decentralized applications more affordable and usable to a wider audience.

The upcoming airdrop not only rewards early adopters but also serves as a catalyst to drive further innovation and adoption of ZKsync as a plausible solution for developers.