The Gnosis Token Auction analysisA graph view

The Gnosis token auction was over in 12 minutes. There is much discussion about what this implies. I don’t have a clear position regarding that, yet — but I can help with another question: Where did all the ETH come from?

Let’s have a look:

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The illustration shows the second degree neighborhood graph of the Gnosis auction contract. It only includes Messages that were sent after Block 3.5M (about 2 weeks before the auction) to the end of the auction. The node in the center (###strong

/strong###) is the Gnosis Reverse Dutch Auction Contract Account.Round nodes represent External Accounts. Token buyers are white, Accounts that fund buyers are in grey.Red triangles represent Contract AccountsPurple squares represent exchangesInteractions between Accounts are grouped. That means if there were several interactions between two Accounts only 1 line is drawn.Blue connections are accepted bids to the Gnosis Auction (unsuccessful bids are not displayed) with the origin of the connection as the receiver of the GNO tokens bought. This is not the same as ether transfers to the auction because the sender of ether and the receiver of the GNO tokens are not necessarily the same Account.Interactions that fund Bidders are drawn in white.All other interactions are grey.The double lines represent Call Transactions and Call Contract Messages. Some Observations

The clusters in (F/G5), (E6), (G6) and (I5) show buyers that received ETH from Poloniex, Kraken, Bittrex and yunbi before buying GNO.

The last accepted buyer is shown in blue (G7). The green arrow represents the ~14.5 ETH returned by the auction, because it was over the 250k ETH limit.

Some bids had the auction as a receiver (###strong

/strong###). These GNO are lost forever (72.3 ETH in 6 bids = ~400 GNO). However, I hear that Gnosis has decided to reimburse the unlucky buyers.

The biggest bids were done by contracts at the very beginning of the auction. The Bidding Ring contract (E3) bought ~78k ETH and the Proxy Sender contract (B5) bought round about 38k ETH. It was funded by 326 accounts. The accounts are arranged in several clusters, depending where they were funded from. The biggest cluster contains the nodes whose funding is older than 2 weeks (A4/5). Since no data older than 2 weeks is included in the graph, they cannot be grouped differently. The cluster in (B5/6) was funded by Kraken and the one in (C4/5) by Poloniex.

Many smaller buyers concentrated their funds before bidding. These Accounts are represented by the formations similar to the one in (J1).


This is an example of what is possible when graph analysis works hand in hand with ontology engineering. Of course, there is much more to see in the Graph than was discussed here. But there are limitations to what can be shown in a single image. One limitation of this illustration is that it doesn’t differentiate between the bidder (the Account that sent the actual bid) and the receiver of the GNO. When different, the receiver is shown in the image, not the bidder.

The strength of visualizations is that they provide a mental image of what happened to non-technical viewers. And this leads to good questions. Which can sometimes be answered by a simple graph query to the db.

If you have questions, ask in the comments of this article, I’ll try to answer them.

Sources and tools

The data for this illustration was created using an architecture provided by alethio, a baby ConsenSys spoke concerned with blockchain analytics. Thanks to everyone who helped build it! The alethio engine is powered by EthOn. The illustration was created using Cytoscape.


Some explanations were simplified to address a broader audience. If you have questions, please ask me.

The author is a member of ConsenSys and co-founder of alethio. The views expressed by the author above do not necessarily represent the views of Consensus Systems LLC DBA ConsenSys. ConsenSys is a decentralized community with ConsenSys Media being a platform for members to freely express their diverse ideas and perspectives. To learn more about ConsenSys and Ethereum, please visit our website.