zeroDAO Logo

The Road to Interoperability: The Importance of BTC in DeFi

Published On: 6/27/2023

The crypto ecosystem is a diverse space, full of unique coins and tokens, each offering a range of features and functionality.

While the majority of these assets were initially designed to live on their native blockchains, the rise of DeFi necessitated a way to bring assets like Bitcoin cross-chain.

This article explores the growing necessity of efficient, secure and decentralized multichain interoperability and highlights the significant role BTC plays in the future of DeFi, specifically within the Ethereum ecosystem.

The Race for Layer 1 Dominance

As the pioneering blockchain and digital currency, Bitcoin currently accounts for 50% of the total crypto marketcap. It serves as a store of value, commonly referred to as "digital gold".

Ethereum, on the other hand, with its smart contract capabilities, has ignited a wave of innovation, notably in DeFi. With thousands of dApps utilizing its network, its dominance is rising, currently sitting at 20%.

Layer 2 scaling solutions, including Arbitrum, Polygon and Optimism, have also grown in popularity. While they may be considered 'multichain', these projects fall under the Ethereum umbrella, only adding to the overall market share of its ecosystem.

Why is market dominance relevant?

Despite many blockchains, such as Solana and Avalanche, seeking to replicate the success of Bitcoin and Ethereum, this overwhelming dominance makes it abundantly clear that BTC and ETH remain the key players in the Layer 1 space.

Additionally, Layer 2s becoming more prevalent and helping to contribute to Ethereum’s growing ecosystem emphasize the fact that Ethereum is the perfect place for BTC to prove its long-term DeFi utility.

Why Bridge Bitcoin to Ethereum's DeFi?

DeFi represents a new paradigm in financial systems. By leveraging the programmability of smart contracts on Ethereum, DeFi applications offer an array of financial services — from lending and borrowing to insurance and asset management — all without the need for intermediaries.

However, these possibilities should not be limited only to Ethereum-based assets – Ethereum is also seeing an influx of real-world assets (RWAs).

These tangible, non-blockchain assets, like properties, equities, commodities, and even intellectual property, are being tokenized on Ethereum, broadening its capacity to bridge the traditional finance and crypto worlds.

Tokenizing these RWAs on Ethereum enables innovative possibilities like fractional ownership and broader market access and allows these assets to participate in DeFi. Their addition to Ethereum's DeFi space further enhances Bitcoin's utility there. With a greater variety of assets in the ecosystem, BTC can be leveraged in novel ways, broadening its use cases beyond serving as collateral.

With its large market cap and established reputation with both retail and institutional investors, Bitcoin can significantly enhance liquidity and stability within Ethereum's DeFi and RWA space.

Although this has been addressed to a certain degree, problems persist in creating secure and efficient bridges for BTC and other non-EVM cryptos to interact with Ethereum's DeFi ecosystem.

Current bridging solutions face limitations due to trust issues, inefficiency, and limited interoperability, while tokenized alternatives, such as Wrapped Bitcoin (WBTC), have come under scrutiny due to centralization concerns.

ZERO Network: Paving the Way for Bitcoin's Cross-Chain Transition

The core focus of the ZERO Network is to address the problems faced by existing cross-chain solutions and help to bridge the gap between Bitcoin and Ethereum.

The network's model ensures that BTC transferred from the Bitcoin blockchain to Ethereum is securely backed by the original assets, represented as $zBTC. This is achieved through a unique economic model that emphasizes collateralization and staking for assets bridged onto EVM networks.

When assets like BTC are transferred from their native chains, they are replaced with equivalent tokens on the destination chain, with native tokens held by a key managed collectively by all participating signing nodes. This decentralized key management system ensures the asset's safety while enabling it to interact freely within Ethereum's DeFi space.

The Importance of Bitcoin's DeFi Integration

With BTC on Ethereum, users can interact with Bitcoin in entirely new ways, participating in yield farming, lending and a range of other DeFi activities.

With its substantial market cap and broad adoption, Bitcoin can serve as a significant source of liquidity. This could lead to more stable prices, lower borrowing costs, and enhanced market efficiency within the DeFi sector.

Bridging also enables Bitcoin holders to fully utilize their assets, earning yields through lending and liquidity provision. This creates an avenue for Bitcoin to do more than just sit as a store of value, allowing it to interact with, and contribute to, the Ethereum ecosystem.

Check out zeroDAO's recent article on the ZERO Network for a full breakdown of network economics, staking and governance, enhanced interoperability, as well as its unique liquidity-generating NFTs – The ZERO Heroes.


In an ever-evolving blockchain landscape, networks must coexist and interact to leverage their strengths. Although Bitcoin and Ethereum are fundamentally different, they are equally important to the mainstream adoption of DeFi and blockchain technology as a whole.

With ZERO Network's bridging solutions, the friction between these blockchains is reduced. Cross-chain interoperability is an essential step toward a more integrated and efficient ecosystem.

Thanks for tuning in, ZERO Heroes! Stay updated with the latest developments by following the zeroDAO Twitter Page and joining the Discord Channel.

Contact Us

For partnership or investment inquiries email

DocsTwitterDiscordMatrixGitHub | Website

Back to all blog posts