Polygon Co-founder Leaves to Run Independent Modular Blockchain, Avail

After spending five years at the Layer 2 blockchain, Anurag Arjun is leaving to focus on the development of the modular layer 1 blockchain, Avail.
Image source: availproject.org

Quick take:

  • Anurag Arjun spent five years at Polygon.
  • He started building Avail within the Polygon ecosystem in 2020.
  • He is now leaving to run the new Layer 1 blockchain independently with Polygon focusing on Layer 2.

Anurag Arjun has spun out his Layer 1 blockchain start-up, Avail from Polygon. The Polygon co-founder announced on Thursday evening that he was leaving the company to focus on developing his new project.

Spent five years with the Ethereum scaling protocol. However, with Polygon focusing on Layer 2 solutions, he feels it’s time to take the project out of the giant web3 company’s ecosystem where it has been incubated since he started building it in 2020.

“Today marks a historic day in my 5+ years at Polygon,” Arjun wrote on Twitter, adding, “I’m excited to announce that Avail, a modular blockchain optimized for data availability, will be spun off and exist separately from Polygon Labs and Polygon Foundation.” Arjun will now helm the development of Avail outside of Polygon.

Citing the success Polygon has achieved since he co-founded the company with Jaynti Kanani and Sandeep Nailwal in 2017 as Matic, through its evolution into Polygon after Mihailo Bjelic joined in 2021, Arjun said “the need for Polygon to focus on Layer 2 solutions & streamline its efforts has become essential.”

“Avail as a modular blockchain with a data availability layer is uniquely positioned to help developers overcome the challenges of monolithic blockchains but falls outside Polygon’s L2 solutions. Thus, I offered to continue leading Avail as a separate, self-funded entity,” he wrote.

Arjun describes Avail as “a base consensus layer that allows other blockchains or applications with any execution environment to be built on top.” Much like modular layer 2 blockchains, Avail allows builders to make their applications fast, efficient, and scalable, a blog post on the blockchain platform’s website reads.

It enables developers to optimise executions by making sure the sequence of transactions is available. 

“Its strength lies within a peer-to-peer network of light clients, potentially numbering in tens of thousands to millions, that perform DAS to ensure the data is available. In other words, Avail decouples the data availability layer, making it easier for chain developers to focus on execution and settlement,” Arjun wrote in the blog post published Wednesday.

According to Arjun, the platform leverages sovereign roll-ups powered by zero-knowledge cryptography, sovereign chains, validiums and optimistic chains, among others.

The platform also allows developers to build their apps the way they want, which Arjun says is a key advantage compared to other scaling blockchains. 

Avail, is also protocol agnostic, meaning it can be adapted to different web3 protocols. It is open-source, making it available to all developers, and will also feature a community governance mechanism.

The project has already launched in testnet with the roadmap and future plans to be revealed soon.


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