In the lead up to Facebook’s official cryptocurrency reveal, the social media titan has signed up gigantic backers for its “Project Libra” as well hiring senior UK bank lobbyist, Ed Bowels.
This, according to reports from The Wall Street Journal (WSJ) on June 13, 2019, and the Financial Times. In addition, a recent report from CNBC states that sources expect the white paper to release on June 18, 2019.
As per the WSJ, Facebook’s anticipated cryptocurrency has received the backing of “more than a dozen” industry players including heavyweights such as Paypal Holdings, Mastercard, Uber, and Visa.
Reportedly, these firms are to invest approximately $10 million each as part of the coins governing consortium. It is reported that those who invest will be network node operators.
The cryptocurrency, which had earlier been dubbed “GlobalCoin,” is said to be a stablecoin and will be a part of Facebook’s payments network. It is likely that the crypto will have a number of use cases across Facebook, Instagram, WhatsApp, and any number of Internet websites with Facebook login portals.
According to RBC Capital Markets analysts Mark Mahaney and Zachary Schwartzman, the move from Facebook “may prove to be one of the most important initiatives in the history of the company to unlock new engagement and revenue streams.”
The RBC also expects the whitepaper for the coin to be released on June 18, 2019. The document would elaborate the long-term strategy for the token as well as other functionality details and perhaps even a roadmap. The RBC added:
“We believe Facebook will use crypto to facilitate a platform for: 1) Payments; 2) Commerce; and 3) Applications & Gaming,”
Naturally, the project has caught the attention of regulators around the world due to the sheer scale of Facebook’s user demographics.
Since the somewhat unofficial announcement of the project, which was preceded by swathes of rumors and headlines, Facebook has been in talks with the U.S. financial watchdog, the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) as well as Bank of England Governor, Mark Carney.
The head of the CFTC, Christopher Giancarlo, described a keen interest in educating themselves further on the project, adding:
“We can only act on an application, we don’t have anything in front of us.”
In related news, Facebook hired senior British bank lobbyist Ed Bowles. As per a Financial Times article, Ed Bowles is “Standard Chartered’s European head of corporate and public affairs.” Bowles will be taking up his new role as Facebook’s London-based director of public policy in September 2019.