More Than $3 Billion in Tokens Unlock in May—Here’s What to Watch

As the merry month of May starts to peek through the clouds, $3 billion worth of tokens are about to be unlocked across seven different projects, according to TokenUnlocks data.

The two largest unlocks will be from DeFi oracle network Pyth and crypto derivatives platform Aevo (formerly Ribbon Finance).

Most crypto projects make their total supply of tokens available across days, weeks, months or years. Bitcoin, for instance, currently has 19.7 million of its 21 million total supply in circulation. Most projects spell out the timeline for their tokenomics in documentation like a white paper.

Two billion dollar unlocks

The most notable unlock is the hyped DeFi oracle network Pyth, which is seeing its first unlock only six months after launching. Unlocking on May 20 at 2pm UTC, 2.13 billion PYTH tokens will flow into the market. Using current prices, the unlock will be with roughly $1.24 billion.

Just over half of these tokens will go towards ecosystem growth, a quarter will go towards publisher rewards, and the remaining tokens will help protocol development and be auctioned off through private sales.

This unlock is a cliff unlock, as defined by TokenUnlocks, meaning that a bulk of tokens will be unlocked at one moment rather than drip feeding across multiple days. Pyth will unlock 2.13 billion tokens in May 2024 with the next unlock, of the same amount of tokens, commencing a year later.

Whereas Aevo, for example, will implement both cliff and linear unlocks. Linear unlocks are released daily at a specified amount.

On May 15, 827.6 million AEVO tokens ($1.24 billion) will be dropped into the market. Then, 6.13 million AEVO tokens ($9.20 million) will be drip fed into the market each day for the next nine days.

In this case, the majority of tokens will be going to the DAO Treasury followed by the team and “initial private sale investors”. After this, there are no more scheduled token unlocks.

Between these two projects, already just over $2.5 billion will be entering the crypto market.

Size kind of matters

While the rest of the projects won’t see billions unlocked, they’re still notable events with millions entering the market.

Ethereum competitor Avalanche, for example, will be releasing 9.54 million AVAX tokens ($329.19 million) on May 22. With these tokens going to the team, the foundation, strategic partners, as well as 1.13 million AVAX ($38.81 million) being airdropped.

Memecoin will also be releasing 5.31 billion MEME tokens ($147.95 million) on May 3, followed by 49.47 MEME tokens ($1.38 million) a day for the next 184 days. The majority of the cliff unlock will be released as an airdrop while the linear unlock will mostly flow into the ecosystem and investors.

Memecoin is exactly what it says on the tin, a speculative asset with no utility, roadmap, or promises—it’s literally just a meme. Created by community company Memeland, its 2 million strong fans can stake or farm its token through Stakeland or Meme Farming respectively.

Ethereum L2 Arbitrum will be unlocking 92.65 million ARB ($103.76 million) on May 16, all going to the team, future team, advisors, and investors. Meanwhile, Aptos is unlocking 11.31 APT ($102.1 million) on May 12 for the foundation, community, core contributors, and investors.

Finally, the Bored Ape themed ApeCoin will be releasing 15.6 million APE ($19.97 million) on May 17, mostly going to the treasury and Yuga Labs according to TokenUnlocks.

Edited by Stacy Elliott.

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