Regulatory authorities have always determined the fate of several cryptocurrency companies and as time passes the rules have become more and more stringent. When Facebook decided to launch its own cryptocurrency last year, it did so with a lot of backers in its kitty. But looks like things are changing now.
According to recent reports, Facebook’s Libra has lost yet another partner in between a maelstrom of regulatory uncertainty. This comes after months of open-ended discussions about the much talked about cryptocurrency.
On January 22nd, Vodafone announced that it was pulling out of the Libra project. After this, the British telecommunication giant becomes one of the names joining Paypal and Mastercard as they leave the Libra family. An official statement from the company said:
“Vodafone Group has decided to withdraw from the Libra Association. We have said from the outset that Vodafone’s desire is to make a genuine contribution to extending financial inclusion.We remain fully committed to that goal and feel we can make the most contribution by focusing our efforts on [mobile payments platform] M-Pesa.”
M-Pesa is a money platform for smartphones with a massive presence in developing countries such as Kenya. Vodafone has stated that it wants to elevate M-Pesa’s 30 million users across 10 countries.
Once Vodafone’s exodus was announced, Libra took measures to show that there were no problems within its doors. To put out the growing fires, Dante Disparte, the head of policy and communications for the Libra association gave his two cents on the future of Facebook’s cryptocurrency.
Disparte claimed that the organization would continue to stick to its core values and deliver products. He candidly admitted that the makeup of the Association members may change over time but that was “only natural”.
Vodafone has joined payments giants such as Mastercard and Visa as companies that backed out of the Libra project. The debit and credit card giants had decided to leave back in October 2019, mainly pointing at the giant cloud of regulatory uncertainty. Both the companies had quit the roster a few days before Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg appeared before the House Committee on Financial Services.
Several regulators have raised multiple concerns over Libra and that has been the major obstacle impeding its launch. Libra was supposed to launch in early 2020 but looking at the problems within its system, it looks like it will be more delayed. Libra had also lost Mercado Pago, a Latin American payments company towards the fag end of 2019.
Although Visa and Mastercard pulled out, a spokesperson from the former stated that there were other options in the works. According to him, Visa was appreciative of what Facebook was doing and remain open to working with Libra at a much later stage.