Facebook Inc could unveil its blockchain-based project as soon as next quarter, Bloomberg has reported, citing unnamed sources familiar with the matter.
According to a Bloomberg report, published May 8, Facebook’s blockchain unit, which was launched last May, currently counts some 50 people including around 10 ex-PayPal employees. It is spearheaded by former PayPal president David Marcus.
Bloomberg reported last December that the unit was developing a stablecoin for its mobile messaging service WhatsApp. Subsequent reports in the media have suggested that the media giant has decided to peg the stablecoin to the USD and is looking to raise up to $1 billion in venture capital for the project. The upcoming cryptocurrency will reportedly be tested in India, where Facebook is already trialling regular payments through a service called WhatsApp Pay.
Facebook’s reported cryptocurrency endeavours have been one of the factors that has lifted the digital currency market in recent months. According to Spencer Bogart, an executive at venture capital firm Blockchain Capital, Facebook is one of the major catalysts for a crypto rally.
“We’ve seen public reports of what Facebook might be working on. Most of that is pretty private, but what we do know is that they have a very large and very serious team that’s working on some sort of a public blockchain effort – some sort of a payment system,” Bogart told Bloomberg.
He said that due to the platform’s global user base, Facebook’s effort could lead to doubling or tripling of the number of crypto users around the world over the next couple of years. Bogart said that the reported Facebook Coin could be a “stepping stone” to the world of cryptocurrencies.
In today’s trading, the original cryptocurrency, Bitcoin (BTC), broke above the $6,000 price level for the first time since November 14. As of 16:14 BST, the Bitcoin price stood at $6,041.02, up almost 2% from its price yesterday. The coin’s total market capitalisation currently stands at $106.87 billion, which represents 57.3% of the combined value of all digital currencies.
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