PoolTogether is a prize savings protocol that lets users stake cryptocurrency into lottery pools for a chance to win a prize. Prizes are generated on the interest earned on deposited funds, and you can withdraw your full original deposit even if you don’t win.
PoolTogether was ideated by founder Leighton Cusack, who discovered "prize based savings accounts" while researching different financial instruments. The initial testnet and team for PoolTogether formed during ETH Denver in 2019. PoolTogether was initially funded by a MakerDAO grant, and accepted DAI deposits only. Since then, PoolTogether has expanded to multiple chains and accepts a wider range of deposits. More recently, PoolTogether has introduced the idea of "deposit delegation." This is where users can delegate the prizes generated on their deposits to any address they choose.
PoolTogether was launched on June 23rd, 2019.
The PoolTogether Protocol
PoolTogether is an app designed to make saving money as fun as playing a game. PoolTogether is based on the concept of a “prize linked savings account.”
The PoolTogether app is available on Ethereum, Polygon, Optimism, Binance Smart Chain, Celo and Avalanche. In the latest version of the protocol (V4) users are able to deposit USDC for the chance to win a portion of the overall generated interest. PoolTogether uses Chainlink VRF (Verifiably Random Function) to ensure fairness in the choosing of winners. The safe yield generated for prizes is sourced from other DeFi apps like Aave.
On a high level, PoolTogether is a "no loss" savings account. Users deposit cryptocurrency which is used to generate interest on safer, overcollateralized lending platforms like Aave. This lump-sum yield is then distributed randomly across the depositing addresses, meaning you can win large prizes regardless of the size of your deposit.
PoolTogether is a fully decentralized protocol governed by the POOL token. Users can vote on governance proposals with POOL token, and control the decisions made by the protocol. You can see past and ongoing governance proposals on the PoolTogether forum. POOL can also be staked to the protocol to generate yield.