2018 Hedera Hashgraph Year in Review, and a Look Ahead
Jan 18, 2019
by Mance Harmon
CEO and Co-founder

Hello, Hedera family, community, customers, and supporters. What an amazing year it has been. Looking back on all that we have accomplished, and how far we have come in 2018, we are grateful and continue to be inspired by the ongoing support we receive from the Hedera community. In 2018 we made substantial progress on our platform, raised funding to sustain the business for years to come, and have formally engaged so many organizations that have chosen to use Hedera to solve real-world problems. Let’s take a closer look at our journey so far.

After first working on the underlying hashgraph technology for years, and testing it for private, permissioned uses with early customers, we unveiled our public ledger, Hedera Hashgraph, in March 2018. Over 1,000 people attended the unveiling in person, and another 80,000 watched the livestream. This was the first time we laid out our vision; a vision of a distributed public ledger that is faster, fairer, and more secure, with a trustworthy governance model, and a ‘No-Fork’ guarantee. And the response was overwhelming. To date, over 100 dapps have begun building on Hedera, developing applications with big goals, like changing the way we bring drugs to market, or upending traditional supply chain models. 

After unveiling the network, we began spending time with the community to dive deeper into Hedera, how it works, how it will be governed, and how developers can use it. In 2018 we conducted 170 meetups around the globe, hosting over 6,500 interested members of the community in small group settings, where we could spend more time explaining the technology and addressing great questions. 

Summer was a very busy time for us. In August we announced that we had closed a large institutional round of funding, and successfully conducted an accredited investor crowdsale. To date, Hedera has raised $124 million in funding. All of that is held in fiat, giving us a solid base of working capital to fund the business over the next few years. Also in August, we stood up our mainnet, and generated all of the 50B Hedera hbar tokens that will ever be in circulation. 

In October, we held our first global developer conference and hackathon, Hedera18. On stage, our customers shared how they are changing the face of their respective industries - from music and content creation, to tracking pharmaceutical shortages, to energy microgrids, to currency models and more. In addition, we also released our open source SDK, and we published Coq code (a tool used in the field of formal methods) to provide further proof of the Asynchronous Byzantine Fault Tolerant properties of hashgraph. This was a major milestone for us, as it is yet another step in validating our our commitment to being the most secure platform in the DLT market.

And most recently, we opened up our early access program, giving both developers and the community the opportunity to test out our mainnet and testnets. We launched The Daily Timestamp, which is a website that provides sample content used with the Hedera Browser Extension to demonstrate how micropayments can work in the real world.

In order for micropayments to be truly effective, we believe that a platform must support ad hoc payments down to 1/100 of a penny, offer fees that are a fraction of the actual payment (e.g. 1/1,000 penny), provide ultra low latency on transactions (less than 3 seconds) and support very high transaction rates (greater than 100K TPS).

We believe that the ability to do micropayments cost effectively and at scale is a heavily differentiated feature of the Hedera network. We are excited that a broader audience will now get to experience and build on this functionality. 

The year ahead
As much progress as we made in 2018, we view this as just the first mile in our marathon. In the coming year, we expect to make significant announcements on a number of fronts:

  • On our governing council, we've entered a process with dozens of potential council members since the beginning of 2018, and we now have a growing list of companies that have executed the membership agreement. We look forward to announcing the first tranche of council members in the first quarter of 2019, with additional members to be rolled out on a quarterly basis after that
  • We plan to share more council information at an event we will be hosting in Seoul, Korea in Q1
  • We will also start rolling out network access more widely, allowing for broader account creation and token distribution, for testing and usage of the network

As we entered 2018, we envisioned what a public ledger and ecosystem would look like. We now see that vision coming closer to fruition every day, and are extremely excited about what the year ahead will bring us. We hope you had a wonderful holiday season with family and friends, and we look forward to working with you in 2019!