Cardano Foundation CEO Frederik Gregaard has published a blog post looking back at 2021 as a “year of incredible growth” for the cryptocurrency network and for its native token $ADA, whose price moved up nearly 700% this year.

According to Gregaard, 2021 was a year in which the Cardano protocol “sustained growth, technical innovation, community expansion, and partnerships” that helped it move forward. The CEO highlighted some on-chain developments which to him mean adoption has grown.

The Cardano network has reportedly grown to have over 2.5 million native assets minted on it, ever since the ledger started accommodating for multiple assets on March 1. Of these 2.5 million assets, 2 million are said to be non-fungible tokens (NFTs). On top of that Cardano has seen 2.58 million new wallets be created to process over 23.8 millio ntransactions on chain.

As CryptoGlobe reported, the number of active addresses on the Cardano network quadrupled from October to November as on-chain activity picked up and transaction fees on the network dropped from $0.45 to $0.38 on average.

According to CryptoCompare’s recent Asset Report, in October there were 50,506 active addresses on the Cardano blockchain, while in November there were a total of 216,072 active addresses.

Gregaard added that the Cardano ecosystem has seen its utility and adoption grow partly thanks to the successful launch of the Alonzo hard fork, which brought “programmability to Cardano,” allowing it to accommodate smart contracts and with them decentralized applications, of which the decentralized finance (DeFi) space is built around.

Supporting smart contracts has seen a number of platforms  move to become the first Cardano-powered decentralized exchanges. In his post, Gregaard also noted that Cardano also formed a number of new partnerships which include e-sports platform Rival, fintech firm UBX, and non-profit organization Save the Children.

As CryptoGlobe reported, the number of addresses on the Cardano network staking ADA has grown to surpass the one million mark this year. Similarly, earlier this month the network hit a milestone after processing 20 million transactions.

Cardano’s price exploded earlier this year after it completed its smart contract phase “Goguen” and the ecosystem is now moving onto its “Basho” phase, which will focus on scaling the network. Year-to-date ADA is up over 688%, according to market data.

ADAUSD Chart via TradingView

Block sizes are now going to be increased by 8 KB to 72 KB in anticipation of higher network traffic from the launch of new decentralized applications, CryptoCompare’s report also added.

Notably, over 70% of ADA’s supply has been staked on the network, earning holders interest as they wait for new decentralized applications to be launched.

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