ICHI is self-sustaining, community governed infrastructure that enables any other cryptocurrency community to create and govern their own in-house, non-custodial oneToken (a stablecoin valued at $1). You must buy that community's cryptocurrency to mint their oneToken. For example, you must buy wBTC (wrapped Bitcoin) to mint oneBTC (Bitcoin's oneToken). You can use these oneTokens to buy or sell goods and services, pay expenses and taxes, or to create USD exposure in DeFi (decentralized finance) applications.
Minting and Redeeming oneTokens
oneTokens are minted by you with your non-hosted ethereum wallet. There is no issuing entity, bank, or any other counterparty. You pay exactly $1 of value in two parts to mint a oneToken:
USDC which is deposited to the oneToken's (ie, oneBTC's) collateral, and
the oneToken's cryptocurrency (ie, wBTC) which is deposited to a community treasury.
A minting ratio specifies how much USDC and how much of the oneToken's cryptocurrency you pay to mint a oneToken. For example, you pay $0.90 USDC and $0.10 wBTC to mint oneBTC (the stablecoin for Bitcoin) at a 90% minting ratio.
Each oneToken (ie, oneBTC) can be redeemed for exactly 1 USDC while accruing a community governed treasury of the oneToken's cryptocurrency (ie, wBTC). The cryptocurrency paid to mint isn't paid back by the system. Instead, it remains in a community treasury. Each oneToken is a vote in deciding how to manage the community treasury.
Separation of Governance: ICHI Protocol vs. oneTokens
ICHI is the governance token of the ichi.org community and platform. It is hard capped at 5M tokens. Each ICHI is a vote on allowed oracles, collateral, investment strategies, etc in exchange for protocol governance rewards.
oneTokens are the governance tokens of specific oneToken systems. Each oneToken is a vote on treasury allocations, specific stablecoins parameters (like minting and redeeming fees), and on adoption programs.
1.Why can't you just use the cryptocurrency (ie, Bitcoin) to do business activity?
You can't grow a business without the ability to predictably pay expenses, control risk, and/or set aside funds for taxes. That makes volatile, scarce coins unusable for real business. At the same time, it hurts every time you sell a coin for fiat currencies (money issued by governments rather than software) or stablecoins don't economically drive the value of that coin's treasury. ICHI makes it possible to community hodl (hold your coins rather than selling them) your favorite coin while also doing real business.
2. Where can I use these oneTokens to do business? Why would anyone accept them?
There are three major markets for stablecoins: decentralized applications (DeFi), cryptocurrency applications (centralized exchanges, wallets, etc), and consumer applications (online shopping, everyday goods and services). Users will mint the first $10B stablecoins for DeFi, the next $100B for cryptocurrency applications, and trillions for consumer applications. This will take time but the community treasuries are able to power the incentives and discounts necessary to make this happen.
3. What does it mean to govern a community treasury? What can they do?
Each stablecoin represents a vote that decides what actions to take with the cryptocurrency paid to mint stablecoins. Proposals may include the following actions:
selling coins to buy more USDC and deposit it to the collateral,
investing the coins in DeFi (decentralized finance) contracts and earning yield,
paying adoption incentives for users to spend or save the stablecoin, and
paying grants to build applications and systems that support the stablecoin.
This is not an exhaustive list. The community may propose and vote on any proposal.
4. What happens if the cryptocurrency goes down in value or if the community spends the entire treasury?
It is designed to be irrelevant as you redeem stablecoins for $1 of USDC but no design can completely eliminate risks.
5. Could I just mint more votes than anyone else and take the treasury?
Multisig (wallets whose transactions are signed by multiple different people) signers, elected by the community, must sign transactions. Most cryptocurrency communities stablecoins will implement governance policies that stablecoin holders can't vote themselves into the treasury and can only recapitalize the USDC to the amount of outstanding stablecoins.