• Cryptoasset Report
  • October 8, 2018

SALT, the Secure Automated Lending Technology protocol, is designed to facilitate cash loans against crypto assets, thereby enabling long position margins trading.


Secure Automated Lending Technology (SALT) is designed to facilitate cash loans against crypto assets. Anybody with both crypto assets and a conviction that those assets’ value will increase overtime will see the potential utility of having access to liquidity while not missing out on expected future gains. SALT is self-described as protocol and asset agnostic, though generally relies on the Ethereum blockchain’s smart contracts. SALT draw from a network of sources that act as oracles for pricing information pertaining to the native blockchain of the asset acting as collateral. SALT is incorporated in Denver, Colorado. As of late 2018, SALT serves loans to residents of select U.S. states, the UK, and New Zealand. SALT saw massive popularity alongside the surge in retail investor interest in crypto during late 2017 and has seen a fluctuation in market capitalization from a peak of approximately 1 billion USD to around 30 million USD as of September 2018.

Protocol Details

The SALT wallet includes multi-signature functionality and is designed to automatically enforce lending agreements’ terms. This involves monitoring the market value of underlying collateral (blockchain assets), observing repayments, and liquidating collateral if necessary. The SALT wallet stores collateral in a distributed fashion, reducing counterparty risk. Each deposit of collateral is to a unique address. SALT levies loan repayment fees on a routine basis and, should loan-holders fail to repay loan repayment fees, pays off the balance and any fees by liquidating collateral.

SALT underwrite loans and perform full KYC/AML procedures by requiring users to upload a government issued photo ID. This ensures that certain conditions of eligibility are met, including an age limit for borrowing of 18 years. These eligibility requirements will also apply to those who have acquired SALT membership units from third party exchanges before seeking a loan via SALT. Once KYC type procedures are completed and collateral is deposited in the SALT smart contract, users can expect a small delay as they interface with traditional banking infrastructure through an Automated Clearing House (ACH) to receive their funds.

By only offering loans that are overcollateralized (i.e. the collateral is greater than the loan amount), SALT can alleviate their corporation of Debt to Income (DTI) calculations, credit checks, and the associated overheads. SALT can offer loans between the bounds of 5,000 USD and 25 million USD. The exchange rates available to those taking out loans through SALT are publicly visible, the result of a calculation involving a volume weighted average across multiple sources. Potential participants can compare this rate, which is made publically visible, against the market before deciding to take out a loan. When a loan is taken out, a Loan-to-Value (LTV) ratio defines the limit past which more collateral must be deposited to maintain a loan, else additional payment will be required.

Asset Details

SALT have a membership unit, which takes the form of an ERC-20 smart contract. The price of a SALT membership unit is calculated in USD algorithmically via a volume-weighted-average across multiple sources. A public ‘membership’ sale was capped at 35 million USD. SALT tokens facilitate different tiers of membership. Loan repayment fees will paid via Automated Clearing House (ACH) transactions directly to the customer’s associated bank address. The SALT platform has significant appeal to those wishing to take out long positions on their existing crypto assets. If one were to take a loan against one’s BTC and use the cash to buy yet more BTC, one would effectively be taking a leveraged long position on BTC (i.e. speculating with more than one holds). Of a total of 120 million memberships to be distributed, 45.42% will be available via discounted sales and the rest among platform development, employees and retail sales. Examples of the privileges member access users can enjoy, should they hold a greater financial stake in the SALT system, include API integrations, cloud wallets, hardware wallets and portfolio management.