International Token Standardization Association - Blog

DeFi Insight: Cresent Network — the hybrid DEX

Launched in April 2022 Cresent Network is a hybrid decentralized exchange running on Cosmos. The main innovation of the protocol is the maximization of capital efficiency through the Hybrid AMM/Orderbook. Looking back in history, we can see that the first DEX on Ethereum was an order book trading platform. Such a design had a few downsides. The biggest one was transaction fees. Each time a user interacted with the DEX, they had to pay an Ethereum transaction fee. As the utilization of the Ethereum blockchain grew exponentially, such models got very expensive, and people preferred moving to centralized exchanges with order books. Later we saw the rise of AMMs like Uniswap and Bancor revolutionizing DeFi and DEX design. Cresent combines the benefits of an AMM and an order book in one app.

Authors: Valentin Kalinov, Christian Viehof


What makes Cresent different?

In 2020 we saw the rise of DeFi, which was led by AMMs like Uniswap. These protocols became very popular with certain use cases. AMMs weren’t the first DEXs on Ethereum. One of the first DEX protocols was EthereEx which uses an on-chain order book. It quickly became clear that such a design would not work. Users had to pay a fee to the Ethereum network for every action, including placing and canceling orders. This made it cost-prohibitive for users, in particular market makers, who often make 100x as many orders as executed trades. Every action had to be mined by the Ethereum network, which meant delays until the next block was mined. After the fall of order books, AMMs dominated the space. While very good with certain use cases, there are limits for traders on AMMs: users can’t place limit orders or market orders. Cresent wants to offer users a taste of both worlds.


Relationship between Liquidity Pool and Order Book

Crescent Network utilizes the concept of an order book. For each coin pair, the protocol creates an order book. Users can then submit both limit and market orders. Liquidity pools also participate in the order book. A liquidity pool becomes an AMM, which allows investors to participate in the market-making by automatically making orders in the order book for the coin pair. In essence, each liquidity pool acts like another market participant in the order book. It calculates groups of limit orders for each tick then all integrated orders on the order book are matched to each other at once.


Figure 1: Crescent Network Liquidity pool and order book matching (source:

Other features

Miner Extractable Value(MEV) on Ethereum has been a growing problem for traders. Crescent tries to minimize MEV by adopting a method called batch execution for the order book. In batch execution, orders within a batch are treated equally without any sort of prioritization. It brings healthy competition among arbitrageurs and traders, which results in more efficient price discovery of the order book. Crescent will also include concentrated liquidity, just like in Uniswap v3. By providing liquidity within a finite range of the current price, the network can supply the same liquidity within the range as the basic pool with an infinite range, resulting in the same trading experience for users. Crescent Network also introduces the concept of liquid staking. Once a user stakes CRE through the liquid staking module, the staked CRE is locked, but the user receives bCRE (pegged staked representative tokens) instead. When the delegators want to unstake bCRE, the module will burn the bCRE and give them CRE back, which will be a larger amount of CRE thanks to the liquid staking rewards during the delegation period.


Classifying Crescent token(CRE) according to the ITC

Figure 2: ITC Classification of CRE (Source:

Economic Purpose (EEP): The CRE token is listed as a Settlement and Governance Token(EEP22TU03) due to its design as a protocol token and governance token.

Industry Type (EIN): The issuer behind the CRE token is a private company, active in the field of Decentralized Exchanges, Markets and Market Making(EIN06DF01).

Technological Setup (TTS): CRE is a Ledger-Native-Token(TTS41), running on the Cosmos blockchain.

Legal Claim (LLC): CRE does not entitle its holder to any legal claim or rights against the issuing organization, therefore it is listed as a No-Claim Token(LLC31).

Issuer Type (LIT): The dimension “Issuer Type” provides information on the nature of the issuer of the token. CRE is issued by a private company. Hence, its Issuer Type is Private Sector Legal Entity(LIT61PV).

Regulatory Framework (EU) (REU): CRE qualifies as a Crypto Asset Out of Scope of MiCA(REU52) according to the definition provided in Article 3 (5) of Regulation Proposal COM/2020/593 final. The dimension “Regulatory Status EU” provides information on the potential classification of a token according to the European Commission’s proposal for a Regulation on Markets in Crypto Assets (MiCA, Regulation Proposal COM/2020/593 final).


The International Token Standardization Association (ITSA) e.V.

The International Token Standardization Association (ITSA) e.V. is a not-for-profit association of German law that aims at promoting the development and implementation of comprehensive market standards for the identification, classification, and analysis of DLT- and blockchain-based cryptographic tokens. As an independent industry membership body, ITSA unites over 100 international associated founding members from various interest groups. In order to increase transparency and safety on global token markets, ITSA currently develops and implements the International Token Identification Number (ITIN) as a market standard for the identification of cryptographic tokens, the International Token Classification (ITC) as a standard framework for the classification of cryptographic tokens according to their inherent characteristics. ITSA then adds the identified and classified token to the world’s largest register for tokens in our Tokenbase.

  • The International Token Identification Number (ITIN) is a 9-digit alphanumeric technical identifier for both fungible and non-fungible DLT-based tokens. Thanks to its underlying Uniform Token Locator (UTL), ITIN presents a unique and fork-resilient identification of tokens. The ITIN also allows for the connecting and matching of other media and data to the token, such as legal contracts or price data, and increases safety and operational transparency when handling these tokens.
  • The International Token Classification (ITC) is a multi-dimensional, expandable framework for the classification of tokens. Current dimensions include technological, economic, legal, and regulatory dimensions with multiple sub-dimensions. By mid-2021, there will be at least two new dimensions added, including a tax dimension. So far, our classification framework has been applied to 99% of the token market according to market capitalization of classified tokens.
  • ITSA’s Tokenbase currently holds data on over 4000 tokens. Tokenbase is a holistic database for the analysis of tokens and combines our identification and classification data with market and blockchain data from external providers. Third-party data of several partners is already integrated, and API access is also in development.


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Valentin Kalinov is an Executive Director at International Token Standardization Association (ITSA) e.V., working to create the world’s largest token database, including a classification framework and unique token identifiers and locators. He has over five years of experience working at BlockchainHub Berlin in content creation and token analysis, as a project manager at the Research Institute for Cryptoeconomics at the Vienna University of Economics and token analyst at Token Kitchen. You can contact Valentin via and connect on Linkedin if you would like to further discuss ITSA e.V. or have any other open questions.

Christian Viehof is an Executive Director at the International Token Standardization Association (ITSA) e.V., working to create the world’s largest token database including a classification framework and unique token identifiers and locators. He completed his Bachelor in Economics at the University of Bonn, the Hong Kong University and the London School of Economics and Political Science with a focus on Behavioral Economics and Finance. Currently pursuing his Master of Finance at the Frankfurt School of Finance and Management, you can contact him via and connect with him on Linkedin, if you would like to further discuss ITSA e.V. or have any open questions.