Sunday, 20 May, 2018

Bitmain Bets $110 Million That Circle Can Create the One True Stablecoin

Jeremy Allaire cofounder and CEO of cryptocurrency startup Circle Jeremy Allaire cofounder and CEO of cryptocurrency startup Circle David L. Ryan—Boston Globe via Getty Images
Russell Knight | 18 May, 2018, 15:33

Moreover, the company has also announced the release of its USD Coin, a digital cryptocurrency pegged with the U.S Dollar and would be used on the Poloniex exchange, which circle acquired a few months back in a whopping $400 million deal. Other investors in this financing round include previous Circle backers IDG Capital, Breyer Capital, General Catalyst Partners, Accel, Digital Currency Group, and Pantera Capital, as well as new Circle investors Blockchain Capital and Tusk Ventures, Circle said in a blog post. The company is rumored to be worth about $3 billion, reports said, adding that work on its new crypto is expected to begin this summer. The new currency is basically a digital version of the dollar that you'll be able to purchase by trading in, you know, real money.

Poloniex has grown to become one of the world's leading token marketplaces.

But while Circle's funding round and valuation are likely to grab a majority of headlines, it's perhaps its launch of a U.S. dollar cryptocurrency initiative with participation from Bitmain that may most impact the crypto market. At a media event, Jeremy Allaire, the Chief Executive Officer of Circle said: "Where the volatility is so high and the accuracy to predict things is unstable, using a payment method like bitcoin can get hard".

Circle's choice of using Ethereum's blockchain for their cryptocurrency is also particularly intriguing.

Earlier, Poloniex was using the USDT token by Tether, however, after a lot of questions being raised about the suspicious operations of Tether in the recent past, Circle made a decision to have its own stablecoin.

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With this investment - which follows previous rounds involving Goldman Sachs, General Catalyst, and Accel Partners - the Boston company jumped to a massive valuation of around Dollars 3 billion, instantly making it one of the most valuable crypto companies in the world. Several other companies have offered similar stablecoins-most notably Tether(USDT), which is associated with one of the largest exchanges, Bitfinex.

The new coin will be initially issued by the startup and run on a network managed by Centre, a wholly owned subsidiary of Circle.

Circle has ambitions to roll out a crypto version of the United States dollar.

But if all the conversation about exchanges and crypto-plumbing lead to perceptions that Circle is straying from its more consumer-focused products, Allaire was quick to push back. Bitmain will be a partner in the effort; the plan is for the company to help Centre launch multiple fiat-backed cryptocurrencies, Circle said.

Circle also announced that Bitmain would support the Centre project and the resale of the new token, USD-C. We are excited to be working directly with Bitmain on realizing our shared vision.

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