[ARFC] ACI Phase III - “Ad Astra"

title: [ARFC] ACI Phase III - “Ad Astra”
author: @marczeller - Aave-chan Initiative
date: 2024-04-24


This ARFC proposes the continuation of the collaboration with the Aave-chan Initiative (ACI) for an additional year, with a proposed budget of 1M GHO.



The ACI has demonstrated significant value to the Aave ecosystem across multiple fronts. The “initiative” launched ~18 months ago is now a team of 8 people strong, including various talents & providing multiple services, contributing to the DAO’s success.
This proposal seeks to extend our collaboration for another year.

ACI services:

The ACI service provider is now an 8-person team offering a variety of services for the Aave DAO. Here’s what we intend to maintain and improve during this proposal engagement:


Skywards has become the default option for the Aave governance as a whole, and the ACI is proud to keep delivering first-class service to anyone upon simple request.


Dolce Vita

Dolce Vita is the main “boring & invisible” service of the ACI; “Great service is often invisible, but bad service is immediately noticeable” is our motto for Dolce Vita.

Aave DAO revenue is accrued, service provider coordination allows for increased efficiency, and third-party updates and integrations are done without most community members realizing someone is doing the work in the background.

Dolce Vita might be the lesser-known of all the ACI’s services, but we believe it’s actually one of the most important. We’re happy to maintain, improve, and extend Dolce Vita services along with our continued engagement with the DAO.

“Ad Astra”: (Growth)

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We consider Growth and Business Development to be the core of ACI services. We coordinated, contributed to, and created numerous proposals to improve the Aave DAO revenue, and the results are clear. The Aave DAO has never been as profitable as it is now, and the DAO net profits have largely overperformed the market conditions.

The Aave DAO is the second most profitable DAO, and together, we fully intend to become the most profitable DAO on earth.

This part of our work is also made possible thanks to collaboration with key DAO actors in this vertical, such as TokenLogic and Karpatkey. We’re glad to work with them every day, and we all have our own domains of expertise, creating value synergies for this DAO.

Growth and BD are part of ACI’s DNA. We intend to maintain and extend our contributions in this vertical.


The ACI is now an impactful voice for the DAO. The ACI is known to support and defend the Aave DAO’s best interests internally and externally.

We consider that our “chainsaw” arc contributed to making the Aave DAO one of the most efficient and profitable DAOs in the world and to Aave maintaining its leader position in our vertical.

That being said, we fostered numerous synergistic initiatives to build bridges with the community and attract new users: Merit was a large success for GHO growth & Aave market share growth, APE integrated the DAO as an Arbitrum governance player and contributed to a 750k $ARB LTIP grant to support GHO and the ACI represented the DAO across the globe participating, speaking & sponsoring numerous events.

With this continuation proposal, we intend to remain a strong voice for the DAO and remain active both onchain & offchain in conferences. At the time of writing, we have confirmed participation at Dappcon, EthCC, and Devcon for the next few months.


Proposal duration: 365 Days
Proposal Budget: 1M GHO

Note: this proposal is intended to be a continuation of ACI’s previous streams due to governance mandatory delays to avoid a “gap” in ACI’s engagement, if this proposal is favored by aave governance votes, the AIP payload stream duration will be adjusted to reflect an engagement from May 5th, 2024.

Next Steps

  1. Gather community feedback on this ARFC.
  2. If consensus is reached, escalate this proposal to ARFC snapshot stage.
  3. If ARFC snapshot outcome is YAE, escalate to AIP stage.


The Aave-chan Initiative is presenting this ARFC independently and is not compensated by any third party for creating this ARFC.


Copyright and related rights waived via CC0.


What should i say?
ACI really gave the DAO a push in many different ways. The DAO is here now, because ACI pushed us all to work harder and deliver faster than any other DAO in this space. We got more delegation platforms, more participation, more revenue and so on.

I fully support this engagement, as I also profited from services like Skyward.
I have worked with several team member already and their skills are truly visible.

Thank you for your service


The current proposal has been escalated to ARFC Snapshot.

Vote will start tomorrow, we encourage everyone to participate.


Renewals of service providers like ACI are a good opportunity to recap on what are in my opinion good principles of contribution, especially by entities with quite broad scope like this:

  • Independent identity. True DAOs are by definition heterogenous: no matter the nature of the contributor, ideally all of them should be fully independent and with a clear identity and “style”. This doesn’t mean that everybody will agree with this “style” (I do sometimes with ACI’s, sometimes not), but arguably the worst possible approach would be for an entity like ACI to not have its own strong identity.
  • Provable involvement across the DAO. For scopes really flexible like this one, it is even more important than other to show provable presence in the majority of DAO fields. The ACI is clearly a good example of this, with a very solid history of participation on almost all DAO projects, discussions and any type of initiative.
  • Proactivity. Especially in the Growth field in DeFi, priorities can change pretty fast and majorly disturb already planned work streams. During the 18-months of the previous 2 phases, ACI has introduced more and more services to the DAO, whenever the need for them arised: Skyward, Orbit, DolceVita, the delegate platform, Merit or even the Ad-Astra, now “formalised” but already exercised from before.
  • Results. Last but not least, even if not everything is quantifiable, being able to evaluate some metrics is also important. Starting in Phase 1 and especially on Phase 2, the contribution of ACI has brought clear benefits to Aave in terms of growth (e.g. Merit has been quite successful for what I understand).

Having actors with very high involvement on a decentralised ecosystem like Aave is incredibly valuable; full support on this service provider renewal.


We at Chaos Labs fully support extending the engagement with the ACI for another year.
Over the past 18 months, the ACI has demonstrated true dedication and effectiveness in enhancing Aave’s operations and growth. Their efforts in improving operational efficiency through services like Dolce Vita and Skywards have made a noticeable impact, which we’ve personally benefited from and sincerely appreciate. We work with the team daily and are always impressed by their dedication and professionalism.
The significant benefits we’ve seen from working with ACI make it clear that their continued involvement is crucial for sustaining the DAO’s momentum and maintaining Aave’s position as a market leader.


The ACI’s performance has been exemplary and there is no doubt that renewing their term for another year is hugely beneficial for the DAO. All things considered, a budget of 1M GHO is very fair given the Merit initiative and the 750K LTIPP alone, notwithstanding all of the other initiatives they are leading. Fully agree with @eboado and @ChaosLabs points above. ACI has been a true steward of the DAO and while their methods might rub some the wrong way, what is core is that they have the DAO’s interests at the forefront and always put the DAO first, which is crucial to Aave’s market dominance and growth.


We echo the communities opinion and support extending Aaves’ collaboration with ACI for an additional year. ACI has contributed strongly to Aave through their initiatives of Skyward and Dolce Vita. Skyward has streamlined the governance process from the ARFC to the AIP stage, and “Dolce Vita” manages essential operational processes for the DAO.

We are excited for ACI to expand their services through the “Ad Astra” growth phase. Given ACIs’ effort and commitment to the DAO, we are supportive of this proposal.


Fully support - shoutout to @MarcZeller and the hardest working, Aave dedicated team (along w/@bgdlabs) + thanks for the transparency along the way


After Snapshot monitoring, the current ARFC Snapshot just ended, reaching both Quourm and YAE as winning option with 507K votes.

Therefore the proposal has passed. Next step will be the publication of an AIP for final confirmation.

The ACI has provided immense value to the Aave DAO, and we support renewing this service provider engagement with the DAO.


I’m adding nothing new here but would like to echo much of the above.

ACI has contributed meaningfully and unquestionably to the protocol’s growth, and I’m looking forward to seeing them continue their good work.


I would like to see explicit objective criteria in this proposal.

As a concrete example, what exactly is “Dolce Vita”? There is no mention of what ACI actually does here.
What is the process for even asking for and receiving service? If there is such a process, it should be documented explicitly.

I would encourage other DAO members to hold ACI to the same standards that they hold other service providers to when asking for funds. As a hypothetical, consider if there were a similar proposal from another entity seeking funds from the DAO with this exact proposal. It would be scrutinized at length - I would find it hard to believe that the @ACI would vote for a proposal written the way this one is.

As a useful comparison, I’m reminded of the incredibly length process @TokenLogic went through in receiving any sort of funding from the DAO. Look at one of the early proposals they put forth and look at the caliber of discussion there asking for clarity and explicitly stated KPIs: [TEMP CHECK] TokenLogic Proposal To TokenLogic’s credit, they engaged graciously and answered the multitude of questions that came there way. That temp check did not pass and in fact their next one ([ARFC] TokenLogic - 6 month Service Provider Proposal) did not pass either. They only got DAO funding through a retro grant ([ARFC] Retrospective Funding Proposal - #4). Whether or not this type of treatment is fair or not is an interesting question. That said, the type of treatment is certainly different and the difference in scrutiny is an alarming one.

Yes, @ACI has been effective for the DAO, notably holds quite a lot of delegated voting power and has a large voice (86k followers on Twitter) that he is never shy to use. So that is understandable, rational even, that prominent service providers and DAO members would prefer to simply support the proposal and not ask questions. I urge these same members to think and act critically and treat this proposal like they would any other. We should expect to see explicit KPIs in any proposal asking for money from the DAO. This is the bare minimum tablestakes.

  • what services will ACI offer?
  • what guarantees will they place on services they offer?
  • Theres mention of growth and BD. How are they quantifying the work they are doing on this front? How can their performance be measured and properly attributed here?