Aragon Association has acquired Dvote Labs OÜ, the company behind Vocdoni, an open source technology stack that enables private, universally verifiable and scalable voting for traditional organizations.
Zug, Switzerland — 11 January 2021 —Aragon, the platform for building and running decentralized autonomous organizations (DAOs), has acquired Dvote Labs Oü, the company behind the Vocdoni protocol, which aims to build the most secure and anonymous voting system using decentralized technologies. Vocdoni offers governance solutions based on a universally verifiable, private and scalable voting, tailored to organizations from both public and private market including municipalities, public administrations, companies, and membership associations.
Joe Charlesworth, Executive Director of the Aragon Association, said, “We were blown away by Vocdoni’s technology. We believe that leveraging Aragon’s brand, treasury and domain expertise will help push forward adoption of decentralized governance. Through the acquisition of Dvote Labs OÜ, Aragon will be at the forefront in the provision of secure and decentralised, secure governance technology to municipal governments, companies and organisations around the world in the same way it already is for DAOs.”
From today, Aragon will integrate the 11 members of Dvote Labs OÜ to a new company controlled by both Aragon and Vocdoni team. While the development roadmap of Vocdoni's technology and Vocdoni Platform remain in place, both projects will work on leveraging the potential of bringing the two technologies together. In mid and long term this can be translated into a bridge between formal organizations and DAOs, powered by a complete governance stack and a universally verifiable voting protocol. All Vocdoni's design and software will be kept as free software.
Vocdoni’s technology leverages zkSnarks to enable fully anonymous voting, IPFS and libp2p for anti-censorship data availability and protocol communication, and a layer two, specific voting purpose blockchain named Vochainfor accounting ballots transparently. Vocdoni’s platform previously hosted the largest voting process ever held entirely on a public blockchain for Òmnium Cultural, the largest cultural association in Europe with a census of more than 180,000 members.
Pau Escrich, CTO of Vocdoni, said, “We couldn’t be more excited to join forces with Aragon to take decentralized governance to the masses. We live in the age of quantum computing and distributed ledger systems, but we still use the same systems for governance as the ancient greeks. Now, for the first time in human history, anybody can create an election in a permissionless way, and anybody can vote and verify the integrity of the voting process from their smartphone or laptop without needing to trust any central party. The implications of this are hard to imagine. Voting should be a universal right, and the way to get there is by using censorship-resistant and open source technology.
The Vocdoni Team will continue working autonomously as the main contributors to Vocdoni Protocol and offering governance services to formal institutions such as associations, cooperatives or city councils. Gaining adoption within institutions will be a key step in eventually converting them to fully decentralized DAOs, as the technology and legality around them matures.
Joe Charlesworth, Executive Director of the Aragon Association, concluded, “Vocdoni fully aligns with the Aragon Manifesto and our common vision to improve governance. Both Aragon and Vocdoni projects are aligned in their visions of how governance of the 21st century has to be built and by joining forces we are envisioning a way to expand the frontiers of democracy through the development of common good infrastructure and open source technologies under a new company.”
Aragon is a project that encompasses the world's largest DAO platform, which supports a network of more than 1500 organizations that manage over $350M in assets. Among these organizations are large DeFi projects like AAVE, Curve, and mStable that use Aragon's platform and services for financial transparency, asset management, and protocol governance.
ANT is the native token of the Aragon Network. ANT is used to back work tokens for dedicated network services, and is also a governance token for managing the overall network.
ANT aligns incentives in the Aragon Network for value creation and economic growth. By linking demand for services to ANT, the Aragon Network can benefit from the success of the services it develops. ANT holders can also have a direct say in the evolution of the network by participating in governance.
One such network service, Aragon Court, acts as an arbitrator made up of real people, jurors, to enforce human-readable rules established in an Agreement. It's not an alternative to the traditional legal system, but in some ways, it's more useful because it doesn't care who you are, even if you're pseudonymous.
Aragon's work is fundamental to ensuring DeFi is truly decentralized and is bringing about a new transition from DeFi to DeGov. For example, today, traditional entities can be managed optimistically due to the social capital at stake and reliable legal deterrents for misbehavior. But DeFi protocols and DAOs often don't have significant social capital at stake and little to no recourse if a member crosses a boundary they shouldn't.
About Dvote Labs OÜ
Dvote Labs OÜ is the company behind the design and development of the Vocdoni Open Stack, a cutting-edge open source technology that leverages the latest advances in cryptography, blockchain and distributed systems to make possible the first trustless, universally verifiable and affordable voting protocol, at a fraction of the cost compared with the best market solutions.
DVote Labs OÜ aims to make e-governance available to everyone while meeting the highest standards of sovereignty, security, accessibility, privacy, resiliency and traceability. With this goal in mind, they built Vocdoni Platform, an easy-to-use governance toolkit accessible from smartphones, Vocdoni API, a powerful framework to build voting solutions and Vocdoni Bridge, a token-based governance system. All on top of the same voting protocol.
Vocdoni Platform and Vocdoni API have clear potential in governmental markets (elections) and the private sector (market surveying, AGMs, customer participation, etc.) due to extreme security, cost savings and ease of use. And have been used already by tens of thousands of people to vote in signalling polls, Annual General Meetings and board elections between other use cases.
Moreover, this platform can foster deep societal transformation by enabling a previously unavailable high-frequency and low-cost voting paradigm. Citizens will be able to securely express their opinions, from the most mundane to the most critical subjects, using their smartphone.