Casper Network is the name of the smart contract-enabled, layer-one blockchain created by CasperLabs. The network's native cryptocurrency is called CSPR. Like many blockchain-native coins, CSPR incentivizes Casper Network participation and serves as a medium of exchange for the platform.
Casper Network uses a proof-of-stake consensus mechanism called Highway. Highway introduces confidence thresholds, allowing for faster transaction finality when network conditions permit and consistent security irrespective of the number of nodes simultaneously online. The implementation was inspired by the Casper Correct-by-Construction research conducted by early Ethereum developer Vlad Zamfir.
Like other smart contract networks, Casper enables the deployment of decentralized applications. However, the network supports various programming languages, including WebAssembly, Rust, Script and others. An estimated 30 million developers are already familiar with WebAssembly. This may give Casper Network an edge over Ethereum, which uses only the more niche language Solidity.
CasperLabs aims to provide an enterprise-ready, "future-proof" blockchain network with the addition of updatable smart contracts and predictable network usage fees. With these and other optimizations, the company hopes Casper will appeal to enterprise users and developers alike.
CSPR has no limit to its eventual supply. The aim is for block rewards to continue incentivizing participation as long as the network exists and during times when the demand for block space might temporarily fall. As such, a consistent CSPR price is dependent on an ever-increasing demand for the digital currency. However, CSPR supply inflation will gradually decrease versus the number of coins in circulation.
Creating demand for CSPR is the Casper Network's proof-of-stake consensus mechanism. To be selected by the protocol to validate transactions, a network user must first lock up CSPR. They receive rewards — paid in CSPR — for their honest participation in the transaction-validation process. Additionally, CSPR serves as a medium of exchange for the network, with users incentivizing validators to perform computations on their behalf through fee payments.
Additionally, the network's utility should drive demand for CSPR. If the optimizations made by the team prove popular, the ecosystem may become one of the industry's most active, which will positively impact the CSPR price.
CasperLabs was founded in 2018 in the cryptocurrency hub of Züg, Switzerland. The company's CEO is Mrinal Manohar, who formerly worked at major companies such as Microsoft and Bain Capital. Manohar was an early investor in Ethereum and previously ran a $1 billion hedge fund.
Joining Manohar is an experienced team of executives. Medha Parlikar, the CasperLabs CTO, has experience working at Adobe, Omniture, MP3.com and others; Cliff Sarkin, the COO, held a position at leading crypto fund DNA.Fund; and Daniel Marfurt, the CFO, draws on many years of experience in the fintech field.
CasperLabs held a private sale of CSPR tokens in September 2019, and the test network went live in 2020. The team raised around $14.5 million during private sales before it held a public sale on the CoinList platform in early 2021.