ETHx Node Operator Selection Criteria


Stader’s ETHx will be a liquid staked token for ETH that will help users get the best in class ETH staking yield powered by a unique multi pool architecture that will enable decentralization without compromising on scalability.

The multi pool architecture will target to allocate 70% of ETH staked via Stader, to Permissionless Node Operators and 30% to Permissioned Node Operators to begin with (subject to availability of Permissionless supply).

Permissionless Node Operators will continue to form the backbone of ETHx and the Permissioned Node Operator set would be made up of high performing operators who can ensure that ETHx can be scaled seamlessly.

This post is a call for interested parties to apply to become a part of the ETHx Permissioned Node Operator set.

Permissioned Node Operators in ETHx:

Permissioned NOs in ETHx will receive 5% of the sum of ETH Staking Rewards, MEV and Priority Gas Fees. Permissioned NOs do not have to put up a bond at the time of ETHx launch.

They will not be eligible for any SD rewards (Permissionless Node Operators will continue to receive SD rewards). A few months post launch, the permissioned NOs will need to put up a bond of at least 0.4 ETH worth of $SD per validator spun up and then become eligible to receive SD rewards.

Stader Oracles:

Oracles are an integral part of the ETHx architecture and decentralization of Oracle infrastructure is a key goal for Stader

  • Select Permissioned Node Operators, and prominent members of the ETH community, will be eligible to run Oracle Nodes for Stader in exchange for additional rewards. Additional details to be shared later

Principles of Permissioned Node Operator Selection:

Permissioned Node Operators will be selected in phases. In Phase 1 of onboarding we expect to select 5-7 permissioned node operators. Through the year, based on the inflow of staked ETH, need for scalability, performance of Phase 1 set, the Stader DAO will decide on further ‘Phases’ of onboarding.

The key parameters on which Node Operators will be evaluated, are:

  1. Performance

Permissioned Node Operators should have experience running Nodes on ETH and have a history of high performance to ensure highest returns for ETHx users. We will use data by Rated Network to assess historical performance.

  1. Security and Risk Management

Permissioned Node Operators should have implemented risk management practices, including robust key management (E.g. secure storage, access gating, logging), business continuity measures and policies to reduce operational risk.

  1. Community & Protocol Development

Contribution to the Ethereum community and potential to contribute towards the development of Stader protocol. Applicants are encouraged to describe their contributions and share any supporting documents/ links in the google form

Beyond the parameters listed above, in order to mitigate concentration risk, the operator set selection should reflect diversity in:

  • Infrastructure
  • Consensus Layer Client
  • Geography of Operation
  • Legal jurisdiction of Operation

Next Steps

  1. Interested Permissioned Node Operators should go through the primer doc here
  2. Operators can apply by filling the google form here
  3. Applications through the google form will be collected from 18th April to 24th April
  4. Stader DAO will evaluate the applications and announce the shortlisted Node Operators by 27th April
  5. The applications of the shortlisted NOs will then be put up for snapshot vote to be voted on by the community


In case of any additional queries please write to,

Thank you for reading!


Update: After an extensive assessment of node operators, including their past performance on ETH, their contribution to the ETH community, and tech best practices, we are glad to shortlist the following operators for joining the ETHx permissioned node operator set.

The next step in the process is a Stader DAO vote on Snapshot.

We would like to thank all the other applicants, for their interest and diligence in applying to be an ETHx Permissioned Node Operator. We will continue to expand this set over time and look forward to onboarding more node operators in the future.


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Quite disappointed that we were not short listed.

We currently payout $100-150k+ a day in crypto to customers and offered to add the option to payout our customers in interest-bearing staked ETH, giving large daily demand pressure and allowing Stader to grow on ETH by millions a month. We did ask for 15% of the 30% allocated to operators in return and a small % fee of 0.5% until Stader gets big on ETH so that our income covers the cost to implement this. The cost to acquire customers for Stader is a lot more than 0.5%, and this 0% would have gone to 0 once Stader on ETH reached a quarter of its forecast size.

I find it quite disappointing that Stader rather pay staking companies that offer 0 rather than a company that offered to grow its customer base by a couple % every month. Stader only has $109 million staked, an extra million or two a month in customers is huge to them.

In addition, we have provided technical support and help to Stader over the past half year. Straight up, Stader’s devs had no idea how ETH and MEV worked going into this and being the first ETH Operator to implement MEV, we are experts. We have operated the ETH network longer than most of the operators short listed, most of them are tiny no-name companies while we have 100,000+ ETH blocks to our name. We also offered to stake a large chunk of ETH that would give Stader an early boost while putting our own money where our mouth is. I doubt any of these operators offered to put a single cent in. What’s the point of using the same operators as Lido? That basically means if Lido fails Stader fails.

On behalf of the entire InfStones team, we want to express our gratitude for giving us the opportunity to join the ETHx permissioned node operator set. We are proud to say that InfStones currently runs more than 20,000 ETH validator nodes with $1 billion in staked ETH. As an official LIDO node operator, we are confident in our ability to provide valuable feedback on the ETHx development process flow, based on our experience running infrastructure for these liquid staking platforms.

Moreover, we are excited to announce that we have pending partnerships with Swell, another leading liquid staking provider. With our dedicated marketing team, we can also assist Stader with educating the crypto community about ETHx.

Please take a moment to review our Rated profile for ETH nodes at

Thank you again for choosing InfStones as a partner. We look forward to collaborating with you on this exciting project.


We’re absolutely thrilled to have been selected as partners for the ETHx node operator set by Stader. It’s an honor to be entrusted with this responsibility.

At Stakely, we’re proud of our experience and track record as node operators for ETH. Since we started running validators on February 3, 2021, we’ve successfully operated nodes for various platforms, including Lido, Swell Network, and Obol Network as mainnets, and testnets for Diva, StakeWise, and Geode, as well as protocols like SSV. We’re committed to maintaining our high standards of performance and best practices as we continue to operate nodes for ETHx.

We’re excited to collaborate with Stader on more than just the technical side. We’ll also be creating educational content and tutorials to promote adoption of ETHx. By sharing our knowledge and expertise, we hope to help more people understand the value and potential of this platform.

Thank you once again to Stader for choosing us for this opportunity. We’re excited to work together!

The Stakely Team


Hey Chris,

We thank you for engaging with us over the past 2 months.

We believe in actively collaborating with potential partners as we are building a solution for them and have been grateful to get incredible support from several Node Operators in the ETH ecosystem. Many of them have gone above and beyond to support us by joining our testnet and testing out our permissionless node operator infra as well. This contribution is valued and has been considered in conjunction with the historical performance of NOs on ETH as well as their security and risk management practices.

At Stader, user fund security is key and we firmly believe in decentralization to secure the ETH staking network. Flexpool’s ask of 15% of all ETH staked with Stader to flow to them was in conflict with our principle and we cannot oblige that even at the cost of incremental TVL. It would be unfair to the other ETHx permissioned node operators and would pose a concentration risk to user funds. We hope you can understand and respect this decision.
We are following a phased approach for the ETHx permissioned NO set. We are proud to share that each of the permissioned NOs who have been shortlisted for Phase 1 comes with extensive experience in running ETH nodes, has a strong performance track record, and is equipped with deep technical knowledge.

While Flexpool does not feature in the current shortlist, we wish you guys the best in your endeavours! We will continue to share future updates on avenues to collaborate and look forward to both of our teams contributing towards a healthy staking ecosystem on ETH.


We were fine with less, the problem is that our costs are considerably higher than what you would pay us unless you became quite a bit bigger than you are on Matic. We gave the exact math in our proposal. $20k a year is not enough to pay 1 customer service rep much less a backend developer. Even at 15% we wouldn’t be making money we’d be subsidizing it until you grew big enough to cover our costs. That being said, even if you hadn’t chosen us you could at least have made better choices.

The companies you have chosen make their money off Lido while you are a side project. They will have no loyalty to Stader, will put none of their money with Stader, will advertise Lido to their customers not Stader, and will dump you if Lido told them to. You have chosen companies that will give you nothing and are only here to take. I don’t comprehend why Stader wants to be Lido’s dog.

We offered to put in mid six figures of our own funds under the Stader flag. Have any of these operators offered you a cent or are their own funds with Lido? You’ve put your operation at the mercy of a competitor and should Stader ever grow into a threat Lido can just order your operators to quit you. Given that one of Lido’s founders is the man that was discovered to be abusing ETH network’s consensus and is famous for abusing/rugging multiple crypto networks, I will not be surprised if that happened. Crypto is all about trust and why would stakers trust Stader when Stader’s operators main customer is someone else? Why would they choose Stader over Lido knowing that Lido can crush Stader at any time?

Lido is a DAO that pushes that they are not under any law which means they can order providers to quit competitors without any oversight. Would LDO holders be against Lido crushing competitors to pump the value of the LDO token? Have any of these operators signed agreements that Stader will be the preferred client in any disagreement/conflict with Lido or any of their bigger customers? Or is Stader the dog in this relationship that’ll be kicked away should any issue occur. The last two posts from the operators you’ve chosen to “trust” above me talk about how much they’ve gotten from your competitors which implies that you aren’t worth shit to them compared to their main customer. Will they drop a billion dollar customer for a million dollar one if Lido orders them to dump you?

Stader’s choice in operators hasn’t even sold Stader to Lido, your paying Lido to take control of your operations which is the funniest part. Your paying people to share every single technical development with Lido, to refer your customers to Lido, to put your future in Lido’s control.

Will InfStones put Stader’s logo higher up than Lido’s on their website?
Will Stakely remove all the Lido advertising from their website or add yours?

Lido surely appreciates that you are paying their operators to steal your customers.

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I do not know all the facts and information that you @FlexChris reveal here, but I agree with you regarding the concern of Lido’s clients.
This market is evil, especially when it comes to someone’s profits.
We need each one of our ETHx permissioned node operators to sign with us a contract for a minimum number of nodes they will run, and for a duration of time, they will provide us with the services.

I do believe that each one of the chosen ETHx permissioned NO is a trustworthy companies and loyal to our vision of a decentralized Ethereum network, but, we need to be careful and assure ourselves cause the scenario that @FlexChris mentioned has a place to accrue and we need to think about it and secure ETHx future.

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The proposal has been put up for a vote:

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According to Stakely they belong to Lido and staking with them means you are joining Lido :smiley:

Not only is Stader paying Lido’s operators, it’s giving all their customers to them. Extremely generous of Stader.

“The applicants were evaluated based on their past performance on ETH, their contribution to the ETH community, support to Stader and tech best practices.”

Lol I don’t think they are supporting Stader very much there. All the advertising is for Lido on most of the operators websites. In comparison Flexpool has been around 2-3x longer than any applicant, has produced more blocks on ETH than any applicant, has given technical support to Stader for the past half year, and has run 5% of ETH for years. In addition, we were the first to publicly have MEV. Stader’s choose to use Lido’s dogs and didn’t even bother to get them to change the names on their collars. If I didn’t know any better I’d say some of Stader’s employees are gearing up to jump ship to Lido because this is exactly what government employees do before they retire and suddenly join the board of one of their clients.

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Chris - Thanks for sharing your thoughts/ suggestions. I would encourage you to do the following if it works for you:

  1. What is your proposal for you to be considered for the permissioned side along with your validator running experience etc. on Eth?
  2. How will you provide additional value addition to Stader’s ecosystem and ETHx? Would be helpful if you provide some numbers and concrete data.
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Hi there,

Thanks for bringing up this topic. We totally understand your point, and we’d like to shed some light on the situation.

First off, let me share that we’re currently in the process of updating our texts and adding the tutorial, just like we always do with every blockchain we support as validators. We want to make sure users have all the options available, but it does involve some internal steps to get everything in order.

Now, about Stader and Lido, we want to make it clear that Stakely fully supports Stader and we’re committed to supporting them. We’re on the same team! We understand your point about seeing Lido-related content on our website, but let us assure you that it doesn’t mean we’re any less supportive of Stader. In addition to our collaboration with Lido and Stader, we also operate with other Ethereum liquid staking protocols, but we’re in the process of adding these protocols to our website in the most optimal way possible. We want to make sure that when we showcase them, it’s done right and provides the best user experience.


Did Stader bring up these concerns and get a written agreement from you before choosing you? Or did they just choose a bunch of operators with Lido advertising plastered across their websites?

Thanks for the explanations.
Anyway, it seems that any collaboration takes time before changing the advertising and text of the doc on the NO web.

I’m glad you clarified some things regarding this collaboration and your statement about Stader.

There are still unanswered questions in my mind, why do we need to trust the choice that has been made by the team? You rolled out a list of NOs that in your opinion fits Staders needs and ask us to cast a vote. But we’ve seen no information or explanation why these NOs were chosen and why they are the best candidates.

I have no doubt about the team or the choice they made, but decentralization is about transparency.
You ask us to vote for X and blindly trust that this is a good X. I hope next time you can provide more information or even tools to check why this decision was made and among which options we had.

Thank you, everyone.

Hello Stader Labs Community,


HashQuark is the world’s leading Web3 infrastructure provider.
We provide full-stack infrastructure services, including node validation, rewards reporting, risk protection, advanced APIs, etc. We cover markets in Asia, Europe, and North America, and are a core member of the HashKey Group.

As an ETHx node operator, we have fully participated in ETHx testing and run node operators three times from Rolling Beta,Rolling Beta 1 to Rolling Beta 2, and contributed to answering some questions in the community to help strengthen the unity of the Stader community.

Finally, we hope that we can participate in ETHx node operator to help more ETHx communities want to run or need to understand more stages to help. Thanks


Happy to have you here guys!

Excited to see how the permissionless and permissioned families of ETHx are going to keep growing on the coming months!


Based on a consistent evaluation of parameters such as validator performance on the Ethereum (ETH) network, proof of scale on the permissionless node operations and adherence to best technical practices, we have shortlisted the below candidate for inclusion in the ETHx permissioned node operator group:

Operator: A41

A41 has consistently demonstrated strong support for ETHx node operations from the very beginning, including during the capped mainnet phase.

Currently, A41 has 100+ active ETHx validators with a commitment to significantly scale up permissionless capacity going forward.

The next stage in this process involves a vote by the Stader DAO community on Snapshot.
As we move forward, we remain committed to expanding this node operator set and eagerly anticipate the onboarding of more permissioned operators in the near future.


Nice update. I would like that we have at least 10 permissioned N.Os one day!

100 validators is a big number, it shows exceptional commitment of A41 to Stader!

To be fully clear, they will not be spinning down these permissionless validators, correct? Simply expanding services to permissioned too?


Yes, and they will further scale permissionless too.

I support scaling permissioned Node Operators set as the permissioned pool TVL keeps growing.
It will be relevant with DVT implementation to have more of them, as they will play an important role in the DVT clusters.

Also great to see they are highly aligned with Stader with that permissionless validators commitment.