CoinTelegraph’s Marie Huillet reports that Facebook has allegedly sealed backing from over a dozen firms that include VisaMastercardPayPal and Uber for its soon-to-be-unveiled cryptocurrency project. The news was reported by the Wall Street Journal (WSJ) on June 13.

image courtesy of CoinTelegraph

Source ostensibly familiar with the matter told the WSJ that the firms — extending across the finance, e-commerce, venture capital and telecoms industries — have each invested around $10 million in a consortium that will govern Facebook’s forthcoming digital token, dubbed Libra.  

The WSJ’s sources reiterated details that had previously surfaced in regard to the highly secretive project, notably that the social media giant’s forthcoming crypto will allegedly be a fiat-pegged stablecoin, pegged to a basket of national fiat currencies to avoid price volatility.

Talks with some of the investment partners remain ongoing, the sources claimed, and the eventual list of consortium members could reportedly change. The consortium itself is allegedly to known as the Libra Association, the report adds.

The report claims that several members have expressed concerns that Facebook’s token could be exploited for money laundering or terror financing purposes.

WSJ reports that purportedly neither Facebook, nor individual consortium members, will control the cryptocurrency, although some members could operate nodes on the network that underlies the crypto payments network — again according to sources allegedly familiar with the setup.

In addition to the aforementioned companies, fintech firm Stripe, travel reservations site Booking.com and e-commerce site MercadoLibre have all signed on to the project, according to several of the sources. Consortium members have all ostensibly been asked to co-sign the coin’s white paper, allegedly set to be published on June 18.

As Cointelegraph has reported, rumors of Facebook’s plans to integrate a cryptocurrency for WhatsApp users first surfaced in December 2018, with further alleged details of the clandestine project emerging in February.

Notably, Facebook purportedly plans to rehaul its messaging infrastructure and integrate its three wholly-owned apps — WhatsApp, Messenger and Instagram — under one canopy, bringing its cryptocurrency potential exposure to a combined 2.7 billion users each month.

In May, Facebook reportedly acquired the “Libra” trademark, and there are thought to be around 100 people working on the project, with over 40 listings for the workforce still open.

Earlier this month, Cointelegraph reported that Facebook employees will allegedly be able to receive part of their salary in the coin.

Additionally, CoinTelegraph’s Adrian Zmudzinksi reports that Facebook has reportedly hired Standard Chartered Bank’s head of public affairs Ed Bowles for its cryptocurrency project, the Financial Times reports on June 14.

image courtesy of CoinTelegraph

Per the report, Facebook hired the senior bank lobbyist in anticipation of the greater regulatory scrutiny in Europe over its plans to launch its own crypto asset and other financial services to its 2.4 billion users. Bowles will join the company in September, and will reportedly be its London-based director of public policy.

A European Facebook executive recently also reportedly confirmed that a white paper outlining the cryptocurrency’s essentials is set to be published on June 18.

As a Cointelegraph analysis notes, both Facebook and Telegram are examples of major social platforms that have been quietly working on their own native cryptocurrency tokens.

Encrypted instant messaging service Telegram had officially released a test client for its Telegram Open Network (TON) at the end of May. Apart from the TON Lite Client itself, users can now also install a configuration file for smart contract development, which connects the Lite Client to a test server.

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