Facebook, the company behind the homonymous giant social media network, might be developing a cryptocurrency to allow the users of its WhatsApp encrypted messaging app to transfer money (within the app), according to reports from Bloomberg.
The cryptocurrency being developed is a stablecoin: a cryptocurrency pegged to a fiat currency, allegedly easier to use on a daily basis since it is more stable (or less volatile). However we might have to wait for it as the company is still working on its strategy.
Facebook (NASDAQ: FB) has been gradually enhancing its focus on the crypto sector and has now, according to LinkedIn, around 40 people in its blockchain team — currently headed by former PayPal president David Marcus.
"Like many other companies, Facebook is exploring ways to leverage the power of blockchain technology [...]. This new small team is exploring many different applications." — a Facebook spokesman said in a statement.
So, what’s the company’s goal with the new stablecoin?
Facebook’s first focus will be the Indian remittances market, as reported by Bloomberg. Remittances are the funds an expatriate sends to his or her country of origin via wire, mail or online transfer.
Since WhatsApp is popular in India (more than 200 million users) and the country tops the “world’s remittances list” ($69 billion were sent to India em 2017), Facebook sees massive growth potential in the country for money transfers within the app.
If the stablecoin project is confirmed, Facebook will be the first large tech company launching a stablecoin.
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