Why Stake with Figment?

Experienced & Trusted

Experienced & Trusted

Early test-net participant.

Genesis block producer on numerous networks and maker of the popular Hubble Staking explorer.

Serving and trusted by many original Polkadot investors.

Figment is a  venture funded,  registered Canadian company, based in Toronto. Canada offers stability, rule of law and clear crypto

Features & Benefits

Features & Benefits

No fee for minimum of 3 months.   

Fully managed non- custodial reward optimization service accross all network nodes.

Figment Prime + discounts available for >  5,000 KSM.  Contact us for more information.

100% missed reward SLA guarantee.

Active governance participant in the Kusama/Polkadot communities.

Security & Safety

Security & Safety

The world’s most advanced physical IDC + multi-cloud staking infrastructure.

100% reward success.  Never been slashed or jailed on Kusama, Cosmos, Tezos, Livepeer and more

You maintain custody and control of your KSM tokens at all times.

Third-party custody solutions are available through our institutional partners. Contact us for more information. 




Track real-time, historical, and future estimated returns.

Protected via industry-leading Delegation Agreement.

Nominating Guide & Instructions

Please see our detailed Guide on how to Claim and Stake your KSM here.





You can add both to your address book here in order to use them.

Fiat-to-Token Exchange

Please see our comprehensive guide on fiat to crypto on-ramps for all staking tokens.

View Guide

Learn More about Kusama

The Kusama Network

Dubbed “Polkadot’s wild cousin,” Kusama is intended to be an early, unaudited, and unrefined release of Polkadot. An R&D network.

However, Kusama will be independent from Polkadot. KSM token-holders will reportedly own the network, and there will be no central kill switch. The vision is for its stakeholders to maintain Kusama in service of new features and projects being prepared for Polkadot.

Kusama should enable developers to deploy a parachain or test other Polkadot features, as well as mechanisms of governance, staking, nomination, and validating — with real economic conditions. Ultimately, Kusama should be a highly experimental version of Polkadot, running an early version of the code that will become Polkadot. A testbed for projects and progressive concepts.

The Bird

Culturally, canary has become a warning flag symbol. Canaries were known to easily die from poisonous gases, so miners used them while working in tunnels as an early warning mechanism. A warrant canary is a method by which a communications service provider can indirectly inform its users of a secret government subpoena, despite legal communication prohibitions. Kusama is intended to be Polkadot’s canary network, “warning of issues for the developers downchain.”

The Token

If you own DOTs, you own KSM
The genesis distribution of KSM will mirror that for DOT: if you purchased DOTs in the sale, then you own an equal share of the Kusama network.

Head here ( and contact us if you need support.

Will KSM be worth anything?

What the DOT is to Polkadot, KSM is to Kusama: the token that powers the network. Scroll a bit lower to read about what you can do with KSM. As for KSM’s value, that’s entirely speculative. KSM is like a sub-DOT, and it may have value for the same reason that DOTs may have value — because someone else might pay you for them. It’s a limited-supply asset, and if there are people that need more KSM than what the Polkadot team and/or foundation provide (via grants & faucet), a market for KSM could emerge. And in crypto, speculators be speculators ‾\_(ツ)_/‾

Kusama is supposed to be a messy, breaking, test environment — real applications aren’t supposed to be built on it, so it may not accrue much value. But it may. Like any other token, KSM’s potential value will depend on speculation and its usefulness. And though Kusama isn’t a mainnet, it’s also not a testnet.

Testnet tokens are valued at $0.00. Unlike testnets, the expectation with Kusama is that the network will live on. Even if it crashes and has to be rebooted, its state should be preserved; if you hold 10 KSM, you can expect to have 10 KSM in the future. So the environment to accrue value is there.

What can you do with KSM?

With KSM, you can validate, nominate validators, bond parachains, pay for interoperability message passing, and participate in governance on the Kusama network. The Polkadot team provided this user guide.

Participating on Kusama with your KSM could earn you some DOTs. One percent of DOT tokens at Polkadot genesis are reserved as a grant for Kusama’s stakeholders and community, though the mechanics have not yet been published. Staking your KSM will entitle you to rewards in KSM.

You Can Stake Your KSM

If you’re not planning to run a validator, you can use a validator service, such as what Figment provides. In Kusama, you can be a nominator, which is the process for delegating your stake.

Delegating Stake as a Nominator

The nominator 1) publishes a list of validator candidates that they trust and 2) submits the number of staked KSM to support them with (ie. delegate). The candidates elected as validators will share the staking risks and rewards with their nominators. If you‘d like to nominate us, contact us

Annual Staking Returns

We don’t yet know the returns for staking KSM. If 50% of KSM is staked, then each validator will reportedly receive approximately 20% annual KSM returns, provided they are not punished for breaking protocol rules.

The Future

All of this may change (and will, if all goes well!)

One of the most exciting things about Kusama, for me, is that it will be a testbed for on-chain governance. We’ll get to try new features and protocol rules with real economic conditions. Kusama should be at the forefront of innovation — a beacon for the Polkadot network, and we’re looking forward to leading those initiatives.

Though Kusama has many of the elements of a testnet, and many elements of a mainnet, our position is that it is neither. Kusama just is. Well, soon. We can expect Kusama in September 2019.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is nominated proof of stake (NPoS)?

Kusama uses NPoS (Nominated Proof-of-Stake) as its mechanism for selecting the validator set. The system encourages DOT holders to participate as nominators that elect which validators may participate. Nominators may select up to 16 validators as trusted validator candidates to stake with.

Validators assume the role of producing new blocks, validating parachain blocks, and guaranteeing finality. Nominators may select validator candidates, enabling the protocol to potentially select and back some of these validators with their nominators’ stake.

The protocol pays out rewards equally to each active validator. However, distribution of the rewards are pro-rata to all nominators (less validator commission fees). In this way, the network incentivizes the nomination of lower-staked validators to create an equally-staked validator set.

You can find more information here.

What are my “stash” and “controller” accounts?

There are two different accounts for managing your funds: stash and controller.

This account directly controls the funds bonded for staking. In order to make and change staking decisions easily, and without compromising security, the stash account is used to designate a separate address called the ‘controller’ to make staking decisions, and without giving the controller direct control over the “stash” funds.

Once designated by the stash account, the controller is used to make staking decisions, like nominating and bonding. You’ll need a small amount of funds in this account to pay for transaction fees. The controller account can be changed at any time by the stash account.

Why two accounts? Security can be prioritized for the ‘stash account’, keeping its funds in cold storage, while having the convenience of being able to easily change nomination decisions (without the risk of exposing the stash account’s private keys when signing the necessary transactions).

How does Figment offer a fully managed optimization service without taking custody of my tokens?

Kusama allows token holders to point their Stash account to any Controller account.

With Figment’s fully-managed service, KSM holders are able to point to a Controller account we control, enabling us to optimally nominate your chosen validators in order to maximize the amount of rewards generated.

With NPoS validators will need to spin up new nodes and reallocate nomination to not overload nodes.  Our fully managed services optimizes returns on your behalf.

Do I maintain custody and control of my KSM token when staking?

Yes, your KSM stay in your stash account, which you control at all times. Figment’s service is non-custodial and allows nominators to use any custody method that they choose.

Can I use a custodian with Figment?

You maintain custody of your KSM at all times in your stash account and can nominate while your KSM are in cold storage, allowing holders to easily work with any custodian. 

All KSM token transfers, including rewards, are processed within the Kusama protocol. Figment never has custody of your tokens or rewards. 

After unstaking, there is a seven (7) day unbonding period before being able to transfer your tokens. During this unbonding period, your KSM do not earn rewards and are illiquid. They are kept bonded for seven in order to be held responsible (ie. slashed) for any protocol violations their backed validators may have committed, since detecting these violations can take hours or days to detect and prove.

What are the risks of staking KSM?

Nominated KSM are subject to Kusama slashing conditions.

Figment provides a 100% missed reward guarantee for any missed rewards due to liveness (downtime).

Your tokens are subject to a potential slashing if a validator “double-signs.”

See how Figment approaches infrastructure and operations to protect against double signing here and here.

What is "slashing" in Kusama?

In Kusama, validators that have poor performance or violate protocol rules may have a percentage of staked tokens slashed.

Slashing occurs when a validator signs two blocks at the same height, which is called equivocation. This is most likely to occur when a validator mistakenly activates a backup validator when their primary validator is still online.

Slashing can also occur for being offline, but it only occurs when at least 10% of the network goes offline simultaneously, and it’s a much smaller penalty.

Figment has therefore prioritized avoiding equivocation over liveness (uptime).

Be cautious of validators that have only cloud-based infrastructure or complicated software based redundancy systems aimed at minimizing liveness. Complicated redundant backup systems that optimize for uptime can result in double signing and up to 100% slashing.

Does Figment charge additional fees when asked to nominate third party validators while controlling a client’s stash account?

Fees are charged at the validator level, not the controller level.  So if you bond your stash to our controller, and we then nominate one or more Figment validators and one or more other validators, we only charge fees on the Figment ones.  We also would remain non-custodial – rewards will be paid directly to the stash account, so we never touch tokens that you receive “from” third-party validators.

Is there coverage (partial or whole) on the principal stake for slashing incidents?

We don’t offer slashing coverage at this time as Kusama is experimental and may break/bug but we do offer rewards coverage in case of downtime. Since we do not have custody of your stash account, your funds would not be at risk of theft or hack by our responsibility.

How long is an era in Kusama?

In Kusama, an “era” is 1 day. This will be different for Polkadot as the current Alexander testnet has 1 hour eras.

Should a user’s stash and controller accounts be the same?

If you have sizeable holdings, consider using two accounts. Put most of your holdings in your stash account, and several KSM in your controller account.

Your controller account can be used to vote and nominate in a convenient way, while your funds stay stored in your stash account in a secure way.

The several KSM in your controller account are used to pay for transaction fees involved with nominating and voting.

What are era points and are they relevant for nominators?

Era points indicate how many blocks the validator has signed during the current epoch of 2400 blocks, 1 block is 20 era points. Since some validators have higher uptime and lower latency, some validators will get to sign more blocks than others. So although every one of the 100 validators should end up with 24 blocks signed and 480 era points after each epoch (about 4 hours), some are more performant than others and will get rewarded a bit more for their work which is quantified by era points. Over the long term, validators’ performance should trend toward equilibrium and the total points per validator per era should not fluctuate much.

How do validator fees work?

In most proof of stake protocols validators earn a fixed percentage of rewards.  However, in Kusama, every validator node receives a fixed amount of KSM tokens and the remaining are distributed to nominators on a pro-rata basis.

Therefore, the effective price you pay to you node operator is the pro-rata share of remaining rewards after the validator’s fixed fee has been deducted.  

Those rewards are distributed on-chain at the end of each era (approx. 24 hours).

How do I claim my rewards?

You must manually claim your rewards via the Polkadot Explorer

Staking rewards are kept available available for 21 days.

If you do not claim your staking rewards by this time, then you will not be able to claim them and some of your staking rewards will be lost.

You can learn more about how to claim your rewards here

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