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Facebook to launch Libra Blockchain testnet next week, backed by Libra Reserve



Quick Take

  • The Libra Blockchain will be backed by the Libra Reserve, a "reserve of real assets" that will provide the cryptocurrency with "stability, low inflation, global acceptance, and fungibility"
  • The Libra Blockchain will be open-sourced under an Apache 2.0 License as of the day of the announcement, and a testnet will be launched at the same time

Facebook's much-anticipated cryptocurrency project, more than a year in the making, will be unveiled early next week. The Block, identified earlier today, will introduce Libra Association, based in Geneva, which will oversee Libra, "a simple global currency and financial infrastructure" meant to reach billions of people.

According to an introductory blog post viewed by The Block, the Libra will be built on the Libra Blockchain and a "secure, stable, and reliable blockchain" backed by Libra Reserve, "a reserve of real assets" that will provide the cryptocurrency with "stability, low inflation, global acceptance, and fungibility."

The Libra Blockchain will be open-sourced under an Apache 2.0 License as of the day of the announcement, expected to take place on Tuesday, June 1

8, according to the blog post by the social media giant and as originally reported by TechCrunch . This event will be the launch of a testnet to gather community feedback on the project and to inform future direction

The blog post, which was sent to major publications over the past week in conjunction with detailed briefings, was sent to The Block by several sources, who requested anonymity for fear of reprisal. It was not shared with The Block, CoinDesk, or any other major cryptocurrency publication under an embargo by Facebook, according to sources who say the company did not want to work with such outlets.

The release of Libra represents Facebook's boldest foray in financial services, and the social media giant hopes it will give the opportunity to the "1.7 billion adults globally" who are "out of the financial system with no access to a traditional bank."

In the post, Facebook criticizes existing blockchains, which it claims have yet to reach mainstream adoption, making them poor solutions as a store of value and medium of exchange. Facebook believes that its collaborative, compliant and regulated approach will help to overcome hurdles faced by other cryptocurrencies

As The Block first reported earlier today, the companies involved in the project, as members of its governing consortium, include companies spanning technology, digital assets, and retail. These companies include the likes of the custodian firm Anchorage, the Visa payment company, the cryptocurrency exchange Coinbase, and many others

 Facebook Libra Map

Facebook also notes that while some cryptocurrency projects have aimed to " existing system and bypass regulations, "the firm believes" collaborating and innovating with the financial sector, including regulators and experts across a variety of industries, is the only way to ensure a sustainable, secure, and trusted framework underpinning this new system. "[19659009] Facebook and the Libra Association have set the goal of launching the Libra Blockchain and an ecosystem to support it by 2020.


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