Earlier this year, Facebook revealed a plan to release a new global cryptocurrency called Libra. While the coin may only go public in 2020, it’s garnered much anticipation from crypto-enthusiasts and even more scepticism from crypto-critics.
When it was first introduced, Libra was made up of 28 founding members — including names like Mastercard, PayPal, Xapo Holdings Limited, Uber Technologies, Spotify AB and Visa.
Each of these founding members paid roughly $10 million to become a part of the Libra Association, claim dividends on earned interest in proportion to their investment and have a single vote in the Libra Association council.
However, on Monday, 14 October 2019 – just five months after the project was introduced to the world – global payments company, Visa has pulled out.
“Visa has decided not to join the Libra Association at this time,” the company said in an official statement. “We will continue to evaluate and our ultimate decision will be determined by a number of factors, including the Association’s ability to fully satisfy all requisite regulatory expectations.”
The decision comes hot-on-the-heels of months worth of scrutiny by governments and regulators around the world – even US President, Donald Trump, warned Facebook against becoming a ‘bank’ — or face having to undergo the obstacles and regulations that all American banks do.
According to a report by Telecompaper, founding members were meant to meet in Geneva for a Libra Council meeting this week.
“We are focused on moving forward and continuing to build a strong association of some of the world’s leading enterprises, social impact organisations and other stakeholders,” says Facebook’s head of policy and communication, Dante Disparte.
“Although the makeup of the Association members may grow and change over time, the design principle of Libra’s governance and technology, along with the open nature of this project ensures the Libra payment network will remain resilient.”
By Jenna Cook
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