Before Libra, Juan Llanos still saw some outsiders who could have taken on the payments and remittance markets. Now, after Libra, he’s not so sure.
“When Libra was announced mid-June … the first thing that came to mind after reading the White Paper, obviously, is that the payments use case is already theirs,” he said.
In this video, Llanos, former fintech and regtech lead at ConsenSys and a legal advisor to the Bitcoin Foundation, explores the things that Libra will potentially change. He says that Facebook has essentially sewn up the payments market for years to come and warns startups to focus on exchanging currencies and creating wallets to support other currencies.
How did it already win? Because of Facebook’s horde of fiat cash – thanks to the seemingly antiquated business of selling eyeballs to advertisers – the company has already paid for all the things most payments startups have to work diligently to afford.
“If you think about Facebook before crypto, Facebook Payments was already an MSB and money services businesses are regulated by FinCEN at the federal level,” he said. “They had licenses in all the States.”
This head start, said Llanos, is what will allow Facebook to create “networks that allow them to move money and store money” without worrying about the rigamarole of local and federal regulation.