SushiSwap Review 2023
Fully decentralized crypto markets have always been intriguing because of their ability to eliminate intermediaries between two trading parties. However, the idea couldn’t fully materialize due to liquidity issues the first generation of decentralized crypto exchanges (DEXs) faced.
It all seemed to change when DEXs started replacing the traditional order matching systems with automated market maker (AMM) protocols. These protocols provide a solution to poor liquidity by utilizing smart contracts — self-executing programs capable of algorithmically determining the price of a crypto asset and sustaining its liquidity level.
This innovative trend began with UniSwap in 2018 and evolved into a working business model replicated by a series of commercially successful AMM projects, one of which is SushiSwap. Now while SushiSwap may not have been the first AMM protocol, it certainly started the trend of DeFi products taking food names.
About SushiSwap Exchange
The SushiSwap decentralized exchange and the platform’s native token Sushi (SUSHI) were both launched in August 2020. The exchange allows users to swap cryptocurrency on a hilariously designed platform that looks like a Japanese restaurant menu. Contrarily, the set of services that SushiSwap offers is far from a joke.
The SushiSwap exchange has risen to over $3 billion in volume in less than two years, while the SUSHI token has received a warm welcome on renowned exchanges like Binance almost immediately after its launch.
The creative team behind the exchange forked the platform from Uniswap’s code and knew they had to offer something more, as the DeFi community already had Uniswap as an established liquidity protocol. Still, very little is known about the SushiSwap co-founders except for their fancy pseudonyms — Chef Nomi and 0xMaki.
In the public eye, the name of SushiSwap is also connected to a rug pull controversy that Chef Nomi caused soon after the exchange started operating. Namely, Nomi cashed out over 20,000 Ethereum and 2.5 million SushiSwap tokens from the SushiSwap development fund in September 2020. The amount was worth around $14 million at the time.
Even though Chef Nomi did return the money and apologised to the disappointed community, the exchange found itself on the edge of a grave crisis. The CEO of the crypto derivatives exchange FTX, Sam Bankman-Fried, offered to take control over the project and contributed to the image-rebuild of SushiSwap by airdropping 5 million SUSHI tokens to all SUSHI stakers. The disputed funds were distributed to the platform’s liquidity pools, with Bankman-Fried supervising the process.
The Vampire Attack Against UniSwap
SushiSwap appeared on the crypto scene as a direct competitor of UniSwap, and the first thing it did was a massive and ingenious vampire attack against its ancestor. A vampire attack is a legit yet merciless strategy that involves incentivising liquidity providers of one trading platform to migrate to a new one.
In the case of SushiSwap, the team offered Uniswap’s liquidity providers an incentive in the form of SUSHI tokens. SushiSwap started an aggressive campaign offering 1,000 SUSHI for each ETH block to be distributed to UniSwap’s liquidity providers across various liquidity pools such as LEND-ETH, YFI-ETH, SNX-ETH, and LINK-ETH.
Supported Cryptocurrencies and Payment Methods
SushiSwap supports a broad spectrum of tokens across 14 different blockchains, including Wrapped Ether (WETH) and ERC20 tokens such as Chainlink (LINK), Tether (USDT), Wrapped Bitcoin (WBTC), OmiseGO (OMG), 0x (ZRX), Shiba Inu (SHIB), and Polygon (MATIC), as well as the full range of Binance Smart Chain BEP20 tokens: Tether (USDT), Binance Coin (BNB), and USD Coin (USDC).
Note that Ether (ETH) has to be wrapped in order to be used on SushiSwap because the cryptocurrency was created before the ERC-20 standard and doesn’t fit the platform requirements.
The SushiSwap protocol is a community-run software built on top of the Ethereum network, not a centralized entity where you can deposit fiat to your exchange account. That said, you don’t need an account or KYC verification to start trading on SushiSwap. The only necessary credential is your crypto wallet address. In order to access a liquidity pool on the platform, you have to pay a small connection fee in ETH, so you must have an Ethereum wallet.
If you don’t own any Ether tokens, you’ll have to find an entry-level centralized cryptocurrency exchange that enables instant Ether purchases in exchange for your local currency and transfer the newly-acquired coins to your independent Ethereum wallet.
SushiSwap incorporates over 20 crypto wallets, including MetaMask and Wallet Connect. It’s also a good fit with the Coinbase Wallet app, which operates independently of the centralised Coinbase exchange.
Trading Fees and Limits
The fee systems of DEXs that utilise AMM as an underlying mechanism are very simple since they don’t feature tier-based plans or separate fee schedules for takers and makers.
Thus, SushiSwap incurs a fixed trading fee of 0.30% per transaction and there is an external gas fee charged directly by the network to execute the interaction between your Ethereum wallet and the platform.
Trading Features and Products
In the summer of 2020, AMM-based crypto exchanges started popping up like daisies across the DeFi ecosystem. SushiSwap released a state-of-the-art environment in order to gain a competitive edge in such an oversaturated market.
Traders on AMM-based exchanges don’t interact with each other in a peer-to-peer manner but trade against the smart contracts instead. These smart contracts are popularly known as liquidity pools — a replacement for order books where tokens are locked as a collection of funds deposited by liquidity providers.
Thus, once you successfully connect your wallet to SushiSwap, you’re all set to make your first swap. To start the process, navigate to the Swap section, select the tokens you want to swap, and insert the number of tokens you’re planning to sell. You can see how many tokens you’ll receive in return, the price impact, and the fee. If you find the terms agreeable, just confirm the swap and approve the prompt from your ETH wallet. That’s all.
Sushiswap’s SushiBar enables users to stake SUSHI in return for xSUSHI. The xSUSHI token is the exchange’s governance token that enables holders to vote on decisions related to the SushiSwap platform’s future. owners of the xSUSHI token automatically earn 0.05% from all swaps executed on the platform in proportion to their total share of the SushiBar. You’ll find more detailed information and APY statistics on SushiBar.
An exchange can list as many trading pairs as it wishes but it means nothing if it fails to provide enough liquidity for executing trades. Fortunately, with AMM crypto protocols, users voluntarily add liquidity to the existing pools to get a share of the trading fee charged to users of the pool. Out of the total 0.30% fee, 0.25% goes to liquidity providers (LPs), in proportion to the amount of liquidity they’ve contributed to the liquidity pool. The remaining 0.05% goes to xSushi token holders.
Everyone can be a liquidity provider on SushiSwap. You just need to have your Ethereum wallet connected to the SushiSwap exchange and make sure you have enough Ether to cover the transaction fee before connecting to the Liquidity tab.
As a potential LP, you have to place both tokens of the trading pair into the pool in an equal monetary value. For instance, in the AAVE-SUSHI pool, you need to provide $200 worth of both AAVE and SUSHI. Also, remember that you’ll receive the reward in SushiSwap liquidity provider (SLP) tokens that represent your share for that token pair after removing your contribution from the SushiSwap liquidity pool.
All in all, this is a win-win situation for both traders and the exchange — the exchange is able to sustain a high level of liquidity while users can earn extra tokens with no effort.
Еven though tokens locked in the smart contracts are impervious to security-related risks, LPs are exposing themselves to another type of risk called impermanent loss.
Impermanent loss arises from the price difference between the tokens in the liquidity pool and tokens you are hodling in your wallet. When one of the tokens of the liquidity pair soars in price, the smart contract doesn’t process the update in real-time. Traders can purchase your digital assets in the pool at a low price and sell them on a CEX for a higher price before the price change is reflected in the pool. And that is exactly what you could’ve done if your assets weren’t in the pool, and remained in your wallet. The lost opportunity is what we call your impermanent loss.
Sushi Yield Farming
In yield-farming, users can stake SLP-token rewards and “harvest” varying proportions of SUSHI tokens daily.
The interest rate depends on the farm, the trading pair, and the level of risk involved. For instance, farms where APY rates are high usually have low Total Value Locked (TVL). You can see the full list of available offers on the Sushi official website.
There are two options to choose from: permanent farm yield or an Onsen menu. Onsen menu is a liquidity reward system for newly-discovered tokens, which receive an allocation of SUSHI tokens per block to boost liquidity provision.
AMM-based DEXs that are built on public blockchains are transparent and traceable. However, AMM protocols employ algorithms to set the price of the assets without obtaining an agreement between sellers and buyers. This can cause security risks and leave some issues unsettled. For instance, if cybercriminals manage to manipulate the token price, they could technically take out all funds from the associated pool, affecting the entire market.
SushiSwap hasn’t experienced any security breaches even though the leading security auditing network Quantstamp pointed out a few security-related concerns during the audit from September 2020.
Also, the “fishy” start of SushiSwap — when Chef Nomi sold all of his SUSHI tokens — harmed the exchange’s integrity and its image as a trustworthy marketplace.
Based on the overall performance, we don’t see a critical security issue that should scare future traders away from the platform, but we caution them to consider all possible risks.
Because of its decentralized nature, SushiSwap doesn’t provide in-platform customer support in the form of live chat or direct phone lines. Participants in next-gen decentralized systems usually rely on the community and social media for support. There is an active SushiSwap channel on Discord that has over 60,000 members, and you can access it directly from the platform’s official website. Moreover, you can find a well-organized forum provided by the exchange, which includes community-run documentation and a decent compilation of tutorials.
Pros and Cons
Like all trading platforms, SushiSwap has noticeable strengths and shortcomings. Here is what we could gather while going through SushiSwaps features in detail.
- A wide choice of available trading pairs;
- An aesthetically pleasing design.
- High gas fees, which is a common issue among all AMMs based on Ethereum;
- First-time DeFi users may find SushiSwap’s interface a bit overwhelming.
How much is the ETH gas fee on SushiSwap?
SushiSwap has nothing to do with the gas fee. The gas fee can vary from $5-6 to over $150, depending on the network traffic.
Where can I buy SUSHI tokens?
You can buy, sell, or trade Sushi tokens on centralized exchanges, including Binance, Coinbase, and OKEx, or swap other tokens in exchange for SUSH on decentralized exchanges like 1inch, PancakeSwap, and UniSwap.
If you want to explore DeFi trading and believe that AMM-based exchanges are powerful enough to decentralize the crypto industry, then you can’t go wrong with SushiSwap. Thanks to the platform’s unique UI, you’ll enjoy every moment spent online. If you are an active trader who isn’t afraid of trying new items on the menu, SushiSwap is perfect for you.
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Disclaimer: Digital currencies and cryptocurrencies are volatile and can involve a lot of risk. Their prices and performance is very unpredictable and past performance is no guarantee of future performance. Consult a financial advisor or obtain your own advice independent of this site before relying and acting on the information provided.