Crypto enthusiasts are finally getting some respite from the ongoing bear market as the price of Ethereum (ETH) has increased 48% before the looming Merge upgrade that transitions the blockchain into one powered by a proof-of-stake consensus. As a result, the future of Ethereum has become one of the highly discussed topics during the annual Ethereum Community Conference, or EthCC in Paris. On Wednesday, Cointelegraph’s events manager Maria A. spoke to Vasily Shapovalov, co-founder of Ethereum liquid-staking solution Lido Finance.

As a co-founder of Lido, Shapovalov has a heavy focus on technical developments, including maki the algorithm and designing the protocol for withdrawals after the Merge. Secondary priorities include updating governance protocols and improving algorithms for the selection of validators.

When asked about his view on Ethereum’s position in the crypto ecosystem in the next two years, Shapovalov said that the trend is that of growing consolidation and that the new upgrade, which speeds up on-chain transactions, would make certain layer-2 solutions redundant. For Shapovalov, it’s a mix between anxiety and excitement:

“The Merge upgrade is like changing the engine on a plane mid-flight. We are overhauling everything from the consensus algorithm to the execution environment. We know some implications of this change on elements like blockchain security, but it’s not guaranteed.

Nevertheless, the Lido co-founder expressed his optimism on the upgrade: “A proof-of-stake economy the size of Ethereum now, with a new level of competitiveness,…

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