Barclays is linking up with Circle Internet Financial, a US mobile payment start-up backed by Goldman Sachs that uses bitcoin to transfer central bank currencies, as digital money increasingly moves into mainstream finance.
It is the first time a European bank has allowed a digital currency company to use its infrastructure — enabling it to transfer sterling and euros — according to the two companies.
Boston-based Circle, which is valued at $250m, is expanding into Europe after launching a dollar transfer service for US users late last year.
From Wednesday the payment app — which transfers dollars by first converting them to bitcoin — will also be able to transmit sterling between users of the app by linking to their debit cards.
The tie-up with Barclays means Circle will be able to move sterling across the blockchain — a public ledger where bitcoin transactions are verified and recorded.
Users will be able to exchange sterling and dollars immediately and free of charge.
The move was welcomed by the UK Treasury, with economic secretary Harriet Baldwin saying that Circle’s partnership and UK launch were “major milestones”.
Jeremy Allaire, chief executive and founder of Circle, said the app would add euros “in coming months”, and had plans to add Asian currencies in the future.
Barclays said it was interested in “accelerating positive uses of blockchain”.
Using the blockchain means that money can be exchanged without using a bank clearing system. Mr Allaire said the financial services industry did not fully realise the potential of the open-source blockchain, concentrating instead on developing its own closed versions based on similar technology.
Pubblicato da ML a mercoledì, aprile 06, 2016CLICCA SULL'ICONA DELLA MOSCA TZE-TZE E VOTA PER QUESTO POST!