Proposal to appoint MLabs as the smart-contract developers for the Indigo Protocol

MLabs has been collaborating with the Indigo Protocol and Indigo Labs since April 2022 to develop the on-chain scripts and the transaction building machinery to interact with them (a.k.a. smart contracts), as well as any bots necessary for the correct operation of the protocol. As the community around the Indigo Protocol and its DAO has matured, and in agreement with Indigo Labs, it is now asking the Indigo DAO to directly fund the next phase of development. MLabs believes that the two years of experience working on the protocol and the proven delivery record qualifies it to be in the best position to continue maintaining and developing new features for the Indigo Protocol.

The Indigo Protocol, powered by the Indigo DAO, is increasingly more and more decentralized. This not only includes the logic enforced by the blockchain, but also the decision making of the different stakeholders. As the protocol grows and the community takes more ownership and responsibility for setting the future direction, it is bound to decide in more granular aspects of its evolution. Until today, many decisions concerning the development of the protocol have been delegated to Indigo Labs as directed by the Indigo DAO through passed proposals. Indigo Labs has in turn contracted the different vendors that it deemed appropriate to complement its core team. One such vendor has been MLabs (

After the successful launch of the second version of the protocol, which unlocks the treasury of the Indigo DAO, both Indigo Labs and MLabs believe it is the opportune time to let the DAO decide on and directly fund the different contractors working on the Indigo Protocol and expanding upon its service provider structure.

As the main development partner of Indigo Labs for the last two years, MLabs would like to ask the Indigo DAO for approval to continue working on the next iteration of the Indigo Protocol, as well as approval of the Indigo Foundation negotiating and signing a services agreement with MLabs for that purpose. As a recap of the work done so far and the important role that MLabs has played so far in the development of the protocol, it has help design and develop:

  • The PlutusTx on-chain scripts known as Indigo v1.
  • The transaction building functions used to interact with Indigo v1 using the in-house developed Cardano Transaction Library (CTL).
  • The oracle bot that feeds the iAsset prices.
  • The liquidation bot that runs the liquidations of under-collateralized CDPs.
  • The Aiken on-chain scripts known as Indigo v2, as well as the transaction building functions used to interact with it.
  • The on-chain scripts and bots used to migrate all positions from Indigo v1 to Indigo v2.
  • The infrastructure to deploy and secure critical parts of Indigo’s operations.

This has resulted in over 11,000 hours of accumulated experience and hard work, with an average of 451 hours per month. In this Proposal, MLabs anticipates a smaller monthly workload in the upcoming months; later decisions by the DAO could lead to further assignments to MLabs.

For the next seven months (June 2024 through December 2024), MLabs proposes to keep working hand in hand with Indigo Labs and other service providers hired by Indigo Foundation to maintain and improve the operation of Indigo v2, as well as develop the new features that the community deem necessary for the next version of the protocol. Specifically, if this proposal is passed, MLabs would be authorized to participate in work on the following features (some of which may be subject to prior approval by the DAO):

  • Algorithmic interest, where the interest rate is dynamically updated based on a given formula.
  • Multi-asset collateral, allowing different whitelisted Cardano assets to be used as CDP collateral.
  • Transferable CDP ownership, potentially enabling a market of CDPs.

Project team

The team working on the Indigo Protocol will contain at least a protocol architect, a technical lead in charge of the implementation and a DevOps specialist (core team). Other developers and specialists will be onboarded when needed. As much as possible, the core team will have the same members that have already worked on the previous versions of the Indigo Protocol.

Position Time commitment
Protocol Architect / Team Lead Up to 60 hours per month
Technical Lead Up to 100 hours per month
DevOps specialist Up to 50 hours per month


The hourly rate of the team members listed above will be as follows:

Position Hourly rate (USD per hour)
Protocol Architect / Team Lead $96
Technical Lead $84
DevOps specialist $84

While MLabs does not know exactly how many hours of time may be required as to each position listed, MLabs proposes for the DAO’s planning and budgeting purposes approval of a monthly cap of $15,000 per month for the 7 months remaining in 2024. Thus, the amount that is currently approved to be charged by MLabs following passage of this Proposal would be $105,000, covering 7 months of development work. The Indigo DAO will only pay for the actual number of hours used.

The rates above assume payment in USDC or USDT. In the event that payment is made in USD, a 3% discount will be applied.