The Substrate Builders Program initially launched to pool Parity’s internal resources to provide Business Development, Marketing and Technical support, among others, to organizations building blockchains. Since then, some of the best teams in the ecosystem have gained Parity’s deep support in launching their projects.
A large influx of teams have joined the Substrate ecosystem and participated extensively in the program, with many teams hitting important milestones in their journey. During the past half a year, we have listened to the various feedback and requests by the builders, and increased program offerings to create Substrate Builders Program V2.
We want this program to be one of the cornerstones of our project support structure and reaffirm our commitment to our Builder ecosystem. In addition to all of the offerings in V1, there are multiple new offerings.
The Builders Program Infrastructure Track
In the April Sub0 conference, we announced the Substrate Builders Program “Infrastructure Track.” Just as the Substrate ecosystem includes a large number of chain builders, there is a comparable number of projects who are building crucial Substrate-related infrastructure components. We define “infrastructure” builders broadly as those building various technical components in the Substrate ecosystem that are not non-bridge chains, parathreads or dapps, such as bridges, wallets and IDEs.
Unlike chains, where most of these projects share the Substrate framework and often use many similar pallets, infrastructure projects are quite different from one another and require more individualized technical support per project. Previously, these Substrate-based infrastructure projects received ad-hoc support from Parity or support from Web3 Foundation. However, we have seen that these projects also benefit from regular communication and well designed assistance.
The Infrastructure Track will pool Parity’s resources to provide projects with Technical, Marketing and Business Development support, among others. Infrastructure projects will be divided into categories depending on what type of infrastructure they are building, which will allocate a Parity engineer versed in that specific category as a technical support person to these projects. The categories broadly consist of Bridges, validator infrastructure, UIs, contracts, and Substrate Tooling. We anticipate that, besides being provided with support directly, infrastructure builders will be provided an environment with the right chain builders to form productive collaborations. The existing support structure for chain builders will be appropriately named “Chains Track.”
As the Substrate ecosystem matures, teams have or are beginning to launch their mainnets. Launching blockchains requires significantly more technical expertise compared to deploying smart contracts. Thus, we have set up a more formalized launch support strategy for teams in the program. This support includes in-depth meetings with our tech team, discounts on auditing with major Substrate runtime auditing providers, more frequent check-ins and a launch checklist among other things.
Community Sessions and Developer Engagement
We noticed that builders often have very common questions and concerns. Some concerns are addressed by adding features to the Builders Program, such as launch support, whereas others are common technical questions that require developer participation. Starting with an ad-hoc Builders Program-wide session on Substrate node hosting, we have begun to increase the number of interesting sessions available program members.
One of the most interesting sessions is tailored community calls with Core Developers. Because Substrate is a maturing product, we wish to collaborate with the community to design innovative, experimental features on Substrate and develop tight-knit communication channels between the core developers and the community. Builders Program members will have direct input on what goes into Substrate and the surrounding ecosystem, allowing for Substrate to be more tailored for its audience.
Other additional features include more streamlined communication channels, more streamlined check-in processes to create action items between Parity and the team, and a feedback board currently limited to Web3 Bootcamp and Builders Program members.
The growing Builders Program community
The Substrate ecosystem is growing rapidly. As of this article, we now have 30 teams in the Builders Program, including 25 in the Chains Track and 5 in the Infrastructure Track.
Since we announced our initial participants, additional projects who have joined include:
- Obsidian Labs
Alex Melikhov, the CEO of Equilibrium, one of our new participants, said “The Substrate Builders Program once again proves Parity’s focus on creating the greatest advantage for both developers and entrepreneurs. This fully fits our current expectations as Equilibrium takes first steps in using Substrate to extend its DeFi product line to a one-stop cross-chain DeFi hub. The hub is designed to end the DeFi market’s segmentation and will let users conveniently fill all their demands in one place, uniting decentralized liquidity pools for cross-chain lending with built-in synthetic assets, advanced price discovery, and bailout mechanics.”
As projects finish their tenure in the builders program, either by launching or receiving the needed support within the program, we are excited to expect a first set of “graduates” soon. If you are interested in the Substrate Builders Program, please learn more and apply here.