Part 1 Facebook Libra/Diem looks stalled but Square and Twitter have good momentum. 

Our 10 Takeaways from the Facebook Libra announcement in June 2019 still seems about right. Over two years later and all we have is a name change from Libra to Diem. The message is still “it is happening” but patience is being strained.

In the meantime both Square & Twitter are making some big moves. Square & Twitter are very different businesses; Square  is Fintech while Twitter is Media. The only thing they in common is that Jack Dorsey is CEO of both; actually that is a big deal.

First a quick reality check. The market cap of Facebook is $955bn and the combination of Square and Twitter is $152bn. Facebook is a behemoth in social media with a user base of 2.6 billion. If only a fraction of them adopt Diem, it will totally change cross border payments and remittances for the 1.7 billion unbanked (most of whom have mobile Internet access).   

Diem has three components:

  • Blockchain infrastructure layer (open source) capable of serving billions of users. Key to this is the Move programming language, which will get a lot of traction with developers (despite many negative technical reviews compared to Ethereum).

 

  • Association for the governance of the payment system and Coin; this is currently in Switzerland, but relocation depends on Facebook’s delicate dance with regulators.

 

  • Coin which is an asset backed stablecoin (initially USD only)

In Part 2 next week we look at Twitter’s moves in Bitcoin.

Some subjects are too complex for our short attention spans, so we do 4 posts one week apart, each one short enough not to lose your attention but in aggregate doing justice to the complexity of the subject. Stay tuned by subscribing.

Part 1

Part 2

Part 3

Part 4

Some may not be published yet.

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