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  • Writer's pictureRogier Visser, Founder Roundabout social

Facebook's Next Major Shift is Likely to Come via its Blockchain Project

A year ago, Facebook announced a major management shake-up, which, among other moves, saw Messenger chief, and former PayPal president, David Marcus switching from Messenger to a new, secretive Blockchain-based project. Several senior Facebook team members were also assigned to the team, whose remit, Facebook noted at the time, was to "explore how to best leverage Blockchain across Facebook", whatever that could mean.

A year on and small details have started to leak out - The New York Timesrecently reported that Facebook's Blockchain project will seek to launch a new cryptocurrency offering which would enable users of Facebook's apps to easily exchange money between friends.

As per the NYT report:

"The company is working on a coin that users of WhatsApp, which Facebook owns, could send to friends and family instantly, said five people briefed on the effort who spoke on the condition of anonymity because of confidentiality agreements."

But more specifically, the project would enable people to send money home from other countries. 

That could, in fact, be the key detail - this week, Ted Livingston, the founder and CEO of another messaging platform, Kik, wrote a post on Medium in which he explained how Facebook's key aim is likely to help people who are working in foreign countries to send money to family back home via remittances. 

As explained by Livingston:

"Every year people working in foreign countries send hundreds of billions of dollars home to family and friends. Today this process is slow, expensive and complicated, with an average fee of $14 to send just $200. If Facebook could offer people a way to send money home for free it would be a game changer for tens of millions of people."

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