Hello, NEAR World! Welcome to NEAR Foundation’s newly reformatted “Transparency Report”. Published quarterly, NEAR Foundation’s Transparency Report explores the NEAR Foundation’s progress towards  its OKRs, as well as the latest technology news and updates from the NEAR ecosystem.

NEAR Foundation is kicking off the new Transparency Report with the Q1 edition. It features a NEAR Foundation Treasury report and a variety of exciting updates on the recently announced Blockchain Operating System (BOS), the NEAR ecosystem’s thriving projects, and NEAR Foundation’s Web2.5 strategy. You’ll get the latest on NEAR Horizon Accelerator, NDC, NEAR’s Web2 → Web3 partnerships, and more. 

NEAR Foundation Treasury Update

At the end of Q1 2023, NEAR Foundation’s treasury totalled $1.1b, including $365m fiat reserves and 316m NEAR ($630m at a closing price of $1.99). 

The NEAR Foundation has continued to adopt a highly responsible approach to treasury management in order to minimize the risk of loss in a turbulent market. Exposure to non-NEAR assets therefore has been limited, with fiat reserves held in AAA-rated Swiss bank accounts. 

Q1 has been a turbulent quarter for the US banking sector. However, the NEAR Foundation treasury’s proactive risk management policies — including limited exposure to Silicon Valley Bank (under FDIC insurance levels) and no exposure to Credit Suisse — have prevented any loss of funds. NEAR Foundation’s risk management strategy helps ensure that the NEAR Foundation maintains sufficient resources and runway even if the market downturn lasts for multiple years. 

As a result, the NEAR Foundation is in an extremely strong position to continue to support the ongoing growth and development of the NEAR protocol and ecosystem .

A recap of NEAR’s go-forward strategy 

Despite well-known issues with Web2 platforms and legacy institutions, and the significant progress made in the blockchain industry, Web3 has yet to fully deliver on its promise to open the web. The Web3 of today is held back by inaccessible user experiences, siloed apps that are difficult to discover and explore, few real-world use cases, and technology tribalism. While there is a lot of hype in Web3, there just isn’t enough value for users. 

This is why the NEAR Foundation is focusing on making the most of NEAR protocol’s fundamentals and convictions. The NEAR protocol has the best tech in Web3, world-class talent, and an ample runway. The NEAR protocol also has the ability to achieve mainstream adoption through a focus on users, rather than cultish maximalism or hype, and the understanding that converting strong Web2 projects to Web3 will get the NEAR ecosystem there. 

With NEAR’s recent launch of the Blockchain Operating System, this next phase of adoption is already underway. The BOS makes it easier than ever for Web2 apps and communities to take advantage of Web3’s opportunities while giving developers and end users a richer, more sustainable experience. 

In 2023, NEAR Foundation is focused on two different approaches to bringing more users to the NEAR protocol and the BOS. It begins with the NEAR Foundation’s top-down approach to partnerships, led by a world-class business development team. By working with major applications and brands with substantial, established communities, the NEAR Foundation is partnering on real use cases that drive engagement on the NEAR protocol, like ticketing and earning. High-traction focus verticals for these partnerships include sports, entertainment, and loyalty. Major partnerships in recent months include Grupo Nutresa, Google Cloud, and Sweat Economy

Q1 has also seen NEAR Foundation’s bottom-up, grassroots approach. This is designed to empower the NEAR ecosystem to invest in its own expansion through grants, primarily through 3 major community DAOs: Developer DAO, Marketing DAO, and Creatives DAO (visit the DAO websites to get involved). These grassroots DAOs will be supported by the NDC, which has launched several working groups in Q1. This quarter has also seen the launch of NEAR Horizon, an early-stage accelerator that will provide support across education, tech, hiring, legal, UX, and GTM guidance, to promising projects and founders on NEAR.

With the launch of the NDC, the DAOs, and the accelerator, NEAR Foundation will focus less on the allocation of capital directly to projects. Instead, the NEAR Foundation will support the community in making these decisions and further decentralizing key elements of the ecosystem. Also, Proximity supports projects building DeFi applications on the NEAR protocol through grants, advisory services, and developer support.

Q1 Ecosystem OKR performance

Throughout Q1, NEAR Foundation experienced several areas of growth toward our OKRs. While the NEAR Foundation met many of its goals, there is always work to be done. 

There is a lot of green. However, as an ecosystem we missed our North Star. NEAR Foundation’s goal was 2M MAAs but we came in short, just under 1M. There are a couple of key reasons for this, as well as a path forward to improve performance next quarter.

  1. SWEAT (which still represents the majority of MAA) is revisiting their MAA ramp up. Current expectations are that MAA growth will occur mostly in the second half of the year, with the US app launching in September.
  2. NEAR Foundation’s BD team has been closing great deals (23 in Q1 alone) — most announcements haven’t been made (6 only) and most launches will be towards the end of the year.

NEAR Foundation has built a new model to better forecast and set MAA expectations. With this new model, the NEAR Foundation is expecting just over 1.5M MAAs in Q2 of this year with a path to 10M by the end of 2023.

Outside of MAAs, the NEAR ecosystem  had a successful quarter with several areas of strength.

NEAR Foundation is currently working on a suite of real-time dashboards so the ecosystem can have visibility into the progress against our OKRs. You can find this at NEARAtlas.com

OKR1: NEAR is the BOS 

At ETHDenver, it was announced that the NEAR protocol announced that it is becoming the Blockchain Operating System — a common layer for discovering and creating Open Web experiences, across all blockchains. As part of that announcement, NEAR protocol launched Alpha.nearpages.wpengine.com, a composable frontend for Web3 allowing end users to easily and frictionlessly discover all of Web3’s possibilities in one seamless experience. It also enables developers to create and code interfaces in a single environment with the ability to fork a host of components to build apps faster, and more efficiently than ever before.

The BOS announcement generated a lot of excitement, inspiring Pantera Capital’s Franklin Bi to tweet, “Decentralized frontends are the future.”

Quoting Illia’s announcement tweet, Redpoint’s Managing Director Jason Warner said: “Something I actually think is interesting is what Illia and crew are doing with NEAR and what they are calling the open web. It’s an experiment worth running for sure starting with Near.Social.”

“We need innovation at every level of the stack, not just the core protocol and smart contract layers,” tweeted Ali Yahya, General Partner at a16z crypto. “NEAR is leading the way.”

Since launching alpha.nearpages.wpengine.com, there has been strong usage and curiosity from the NEAR ecosystem community, with 6,000 accounts created and over 2,500 individual components published. The Pagoda team has been working closely with the active community of builders to help enhance the BOS experience.

Illia Polosukhin, CEO of Pagoda and co-founder of the NEAR protocol, also hosted a technical workshop where he zoomed in on each layer of the BOS stack and showed some examples of features, components to build from, and how gateways can become super apps by integrating with the BOS. 

The next big update on the Blockchain Operating System will be at Consensus. You can find out more about NEAR’s presence at Consensus here.

OKR2: NEAR is a thriving decentralized Ecosystem

One of the NEAR Foundation’s core mandates is to support the continued decentralization of the NEAR ecosystem, and great progress has been made on this front since the previous transparency report. 

A roundup of the ongoing decentralization efforts across the NEAR ecosystem follows. 

NEAR Digital Collective (NDC)

The NDC initiative was announced towards the end of last year, and has grown to become a grassroots movement with hundreds of participants, including users, projects, and other stakeholders. The NDC is focused on self-governance, aiming to empower the ecosystem to collectively make decisions in a robust and decentralized way on everything from funding to elected representatives and more. 

There are now several working groups that have been launched as part of the NDC’s work, covering various ecosystem needs including governance (Governance WG), marketing (Distribution Network WG), project incubation (Startup DAO), and legal work (Legal WG). 

To learn more about the NDC, please see here.

NEAR Community Treasury Launch

One of the NDC’s biggest achievements is the recent launch of the NEAR Community Treasury. Championed by the NDC’s Governance Working Group with support from the NEAR Foundation and other stakeholders, the NEAR Community Treasury leverages an innovative legal framework to provide the ecosystem with a robust, sustainable, and decentralized treasury. 

At the outset, the NEAR Community Treasury will hold 5,662,061 NEAR, which was donated to the NEAR Digital Collective by the NEAR ecosystem community (along with a nominal amount of USDT that was donated by the NEAR Foundation as part of the administrative setup process). 

The NEAR Community Treasury wallet is viewable here.

Grassroots DAO funding activity

The three core grassroots DAOs — Developer DAO, Marketing DAO, and Creatives DAO — have been making great strides recently in updating their internal governance and processes to ensure they are as transparent, sustainable, and effective as possible. 

NEAR Foundation has been supporting each of the grassroots DAOs through that update process. Both the Developer DAO and Marketing DAO have already begun allocating funding again, and the Creatives DAO intends to follow suit shortly.

The grassroots DAOs remain the key source of funding for anyone looking to build in the NEAR ecosystem.

NEAR Horizon (Accelerator) 

The mission of NEAR Horizon is to attract the highest quality founders to build on NEAR protocol and support them in taking off. To that end, NEAR Horizon’s strategy consists of three components. 


The NEAR Horizon team is building a dApp on NEAR’s Blockchain Operating System that is a double-sided marketplace, which allows founders to find people and organizations who can help them. The team launched an MVP of the product for beta testers in early March 2023. 


The team is launching a series of RFPs (the first RFP was released in Feb 2023) to create partnerships with people and organizations who are well positioned to help Founders. In early Q2, the NEAR Horizon team will be releasing additional open calls for:

Content & Tooling

The NEAR Horizon team will provide asynchronous content and access to tooling within the dApp. Think go-to-market examples, legal how-to guides and tools like back office accounting software specifically made for Web3 businesses. 

OKR3: Web2 → Web3 

Starting in Q2 last year, the Business Development team’s  plan was to revamp and hire a full BD team, restructure past historic deals, solve for key infrastructure gaps, and bring the highest quality builders to the NEAR ecosystem. The team is now fully hired, ramped up, has met most key infrastructure gaps, and is in process of renegotiating past deals. Q1 marked the first full quarter that BD has focused on bringing builders to the NEAR ecosystem.

The goal of BD is to help enterprises and startups realize that the NEAR protocol should be the default chain of choice to start building any blockchain application. Fundamentally, BD is attempting to kickstart a flywheel effect to drive network effects to attract builders to the NEAR protocol in order to make it that default choice. 

The flywheel starts with enterprises, marquee use cases, or household brands building on NEAR that provide brand awareness and legitimacy. This in turn attracts startups to NEAR. Collectively, these support real world use cases and increase adoption to attract more users to the chain, which in turn draw more enterprises and startups to build on NEAR. 

For core use cases, BD is focused on a few key categories, including gaming, loyalty and rewards, and emerging verticals such as sustainability and decentralized science. In Q1 we focused on improving the number of partnership opportunities we were seeing, and our pipeline has increased dramatically. We found high quality sources of leads to be from backer referrals and agencies / dev shops so have strengthened those ties. BD has also seen a rise in projects looking for more support and a number of builders came over from other chains to make NEAR as their primary, or sole, chain (e.g. Passion, Dropt, Solaire). Geographically, the team now has expanded its focus to India and Korea, and expects to drive meaningful opportunities from entrepreneurs in those countries. 

SWEAT continues to be a  category leader in the move-to-earn space becoming one of the most popular Web3 apps in the world. SWEAT is being consistently used by a million monthly active users engaging voluntarily with NEAR protocol and using SWEAT tokens for staking or transactions. NEAR Foundation’s BD team will continue working with the talented SWEAT team on launching new features such as Learn & Earn, token swaps, and games that will create deeper bonds between the NEAR blockchain and SWEAT users. 

For NEAR Foundation’s Q1 goals, the BD team set out to close three Tier 1 partnerships and seven Tier 2 partnerships for a total of 10 lighthouse partnerships — a goal which the NEAR Foundation surpassed. Although several of those deals are yet to be announced, NEAR Foundation is excited to highlight and welcome the following partners to the NEAR ecosystem:

NEAR Foundation is also excited to partner with Flow Carbon (tokenized carbon credits market), Starchain Gazer (play and own gaming), Vizta Digital (fashion metaverse), and Popp (customer engagement for SMBs) to continue expanding the NEAR ecosystem. The NEAR Foundation’s BD team remains committed to bringing the best Web2 and Web3 builders to NEAR, and look forward to sharing next quarter’s list of partnerships.

Building stronger connections with the NEAR ecosystem

As part of NEAR Foundation’s ongoing commitment to transparency and building stronger connections with the NEAR ecosystem, a number of new initiatives are in progress. 

First, the NEAR Foundation is restarting NEAR Town Halls. Similar to their previous incarnation, the Town Halls will be open to the entire NEAR ecosystem. Hosted by Marcus Ribeiro, a member of NEAR Foundation’s Community Team, they will be held bi-weekly — giving everyone a chance to get a firsthand look at the latest updates and exciting developments in the NEAR ecosystem. You can watch our March Town Hall here.

Earlier this year, NEAR Foundation kickstarted the Ecosystem Roundtable. Meeting weekly, the Ecosystem Influencer Roundtable is designed to enhance communication and increase accountability between major ecosystem projects, Pagoda, and NEAR Foundation. The roundtable’s regular meetings help with aligning on updates, sharing insights from the ecosystem, and discussing high-level ecosystem goals. These meetings, however, are not for decision-making purposes. 

Most recently, the Ecosystem Influencer Roundtable met at an offsite at ETHDenver. Over time, the goal is for the Ecosystem Influencer Roundtable to become more autonomous, and for the participants to work independently to collaborate, set goals and initiatives for the NEAR ecosystem, and develop their own governance structure. You can read more about the roundtable here

The Community Team also put out a NEAR Foundation Community Survey. The goal of this survey was to measure the ecosystem sentiment around NEAR Foundation and gather feedback on where to focus and improve efforts.The common areas for improvement that were identified were around funding, improving communications and transparency, and improving the support and engagement with the NEAR ecosystem.

Lastly, NEAR Foundation has been working on an overhaul of NEAR’s Twitter Spaces/AMAs, which showcase and highlight projects building on the NEAR ecosystem. The NEAR Foundation’s Community Team is finalizing a structured process for projects to leverage NEAR Foundation’s platforms to conduct Twitter Spaces/AMAs with the NEAR Foundation team. The team encourages feedback by following up to the Spaces/AMAs with a feedback form, which is reviewed to ensure community voices are heard and the valuable feedback is put into action. NEAR Foundation has run a few of these in a test flight to refine the project, and the new process should be live by May 2023. Stay tuned on NEAR Twitter, Telegram, and Discord accounts for an announcement on this new process. 

NEAR in the press

Q1 saw a number of top news stories from the NEAR Foundation and NEAR protocol’s thriving ecosystem. The NEAR ecosystem was covered in over 400 articles across the globe in Q1, including over 15 tier 1 stories in outlets including  CoinDesk, Forbes and  Bloomberg, and 34 tier 2 stories in outlets including  Block and Cointelegraph.  

Headlines included the announcement of the Blockchain Operating System at ETHDenver, as well as coverage from many of our partnership announcements, ecosystem hubs, and progress from many of NEAR protocol’s ecosystem projects. These include Kakao Games, SlickImages (led by ex-NBA all-star Baron Davis), Recur, LedgerLive, Calimero, Few&Far and the NDC, amongst others (more details on these below).

To find out more about NEAR Foundation’s and the NEAR ecosystem’s press coverage you can check out the  monthly roundups below:

NEAR Foundation PR Roundup for January 

NEAR Foundation PR Roundup for February

NEAR Foundation PR Roundup for March

Ecosystem Highlights

Completed Raises

Q1 2023 saw several projects complete a fundraising round.

Ecosystem News & Community 




Infra & Devs 

A Look Ahead

to Q2, the NEAR Foundation is continuing its strategic focus on similar  OKRs to Q1, including more work on the Blockchain Operating System, the continuing efforts toward a thriving decentralized ecosystem, and our Web2.5 strategy.

This NEAR Foundation Transparency Report (the “Report“) is provided for informational purposes only. The information contained herein is provided on an “as is” basis, and the NEAR Foundation makes no representations or warranties, express or implied, regarding the accuracy, completeness, or reliability of the information contained in this Report.

The NEAR Foundation, its affiliates, directors, employees, and agents, shall not be held liable for any errors, omissions, or inaccuracies in the information provided herein. NEAR Foundation reserves the right to update, modify, or amend any information contained in this Report without prior notice. This Report is not intended to provide financial, investment, legal, tax, or any other professional advice. Readers should consult with their own professional advisors before making any decisions based on the information contained in this Report.


Powered by NEARWEEK. No spam. Unsubscribe at any time.