Consensys Eyes Lido’s Lunch With No-Minimum Pooled Staking

Consensys is targeting the liquid staking sector with its MetaMask Pooled Staking service.

By: Samuel Haig Loading...

Consensys Eyes Lido’s Lunch With No-Minimum Pooled Staking

MetaMask, the popular Ethereum wallet from Consensys, is seeking to compete against the liquid restaking sector with the launch of its pooled staking service.

Announced on June 12, MetaMask’s pooled staking service allows users to participate in Ethereum staking with allocations of less than the usual 32 ETH minimum.

Users’ ETH is staked via validators operated by Consensys, which previously required deposits of at least 32 ETH. Consensys charges a 15% fee on Ethereum rewards generated through pooled staking. Users can also unstake at any time.

“Based on blockchain data, 99% of ETH holders have less than 32 ETH,” Consensys said. “MetaMask’s new solution enables staking any amount of ETH to earn rewards for contributing to the network's security.”

MetaMask Pooled Staking is currently available to a select segment of Metamask, with Consensys working to continue rolling out the service to users over the coming days. Consensys noted that U.S. and U.K.-based users will be excluded from the product’s initial launch, but said it plans to service those users in the future.

“We’re excited to bring our staking solution to many more MetaMask users,” said Matthieu Saint Olive, Senior Product Manager at Consensys.

Consensys hosts more than 33,000 validators across multiple regions commanding more than one million staked Ether. The company claims a more than 99.9% validator participation rate and has not suffered any slashing events.

The launch of pooled staking positions Consensys in competition with major liquid staking players such as Lido and Rocket Pool.

Liquid staking similarly allows users to pool assets with a third-party validator in exchange for a fee, with users receiving liquid staking tokens (LSTs) that can be sold off at any time or used in DeFi protocols. LST protocols also enable users to participate in staking without posting the 32 ETH collateral required by staking Ethereum natively on the Beach Chain.

Liquid staking has emerged as a major sector, with Lido, the top LST protocol, currently commanding 28.6% of all staked Ether, according to Dune Analytics. Coinbase ranks second with 12.9%, followed by liquid restaking protocol EtherFi with 4.6%, Binance and Kiln with 3.3% each, and Renzo with 3%.

Nearly 27.2% of Ethereum’s supply is currently mobilized for staking.

Consensys' expanded staking service comes despite the company currently battling the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) in court.

In April, the firm sued the SEC in a bid to get the courts to rule that Ether comprises a commodity and not a security asset, making the SEC's attempts to regulate the asset unlawful.

The move came two weeks after the regulator issued Consensys a Wells Notice — which informs a company that the SEC has completed an investigation into them, and typically precedes a formal complaint.

Related: Web3 Teams Compete To Bring Restaking To $1.2T Bitcoin Ecosystem