As it stands, a small percentage of the general population have delved into cryptocurrency. In fact, a survey commissioned by venture capital group Blockchain Capital earlier this year revealed that a mere 9% of 2,029 respondents, American adults, have money in Bitcoin. What’s more, a jaw-dropping 89% suggested that they’ve heard of Bitcoin, accentuating that most are scared to allocate capital to this space.
However, a new survey suggests that the cryptocurrency and blockchain from Facebook’s team will change this, and may spark the adoption of this newfangled asset class, or certain subsets of it, like nothing before it.
Facebook’s Crypto To Entice Investor Interest
Despite its status as a social media giant, Facebook is looking to branch into new industries. Reports published last year began to suggest that the Silicon Valley darling was looking into digital assets and ledger technology, specifically in a bid to foray into digital payments.
Just recently, this news was seemingly confirmed, as Reuters divulged that Facebook launched a subsidiary in Switzerland with the name “Libra”, which is claimed to be a branch focused on financial technology.
And other reports, which cited sources familiar, revealed that Libra is centered around a Facebook-backed digital asset, dubbed internally as “Globalcoin” — it’s a weird name, we know. Globalcoin is expected to be a
A survey conducted by startup LendEDU suggests that Facebook’s digital asset, if launched, will become a massive catalyst for the adoption of cryptocurrency and improvement of public perception of the industry.
Published earlier this month, the study noted that 18% of 1,000 respondents would be entirely amicable towards investing in a Facebook cryptocurrency. This 18% is evidently higher than the 9% already in cryptocurrency — a good sign.
In a follow-up question, 57% noted that they would invest in Globalcoin, or whatever it will be called at launch, compared to other digital assets.
A Net Benefit For Bitcoin?
This all points towards the sentiment that the launch of the venture will cement digital assets as a viable part of society’s day-to-day. But will Globalcoin help the adoption of decentralized cryptocurrencies, namely Bitcoin?
Per Mike Novogratz of Galaxy Digital, it might do just that. The former Wall Street hotshot, now a well-known cryptocurrency investor, told CNBC last week that “Facebook is wildly important for the ecosystem”, adding that this tacit endorsement of the technology behind Bitcoin is resounding.
He even states that contrary to popular belief, Globalcoin will add value to the non-centralized cryptocurrency ecosystem, not subtract.
He isn’t the only industry executive to have thought so. In a Twitter thread published in Q1 2019, Ari Paul, the founder of BlockTower Capital, noted that while the so-called “coporatecoins” will operate in an intranet-esque fashion, they will help the more Internet-like Bitcoin.
The investor explained that Globalcoin and its ilk are inherently “uninteresting” to Bitcoin’s crusaders, who are enamored with censorship resistance, immutability, security, and peer-to-peer systems. Yet, he adds that centralized cryptocurrencies will “increase global interest dramatically.”
1/ It's increasingly looking like 2019 will be the year of the crypto intranet (or permissioned blockchains, or bankcoins and corporatecoins), whatever you want to call them.
— Ari Paul ⛓️ (@AriDavidPaul) March 1, 2019
Laying out a hypothetical scenario, Paul writes that if 10% of Globalcoin’s user base, which he postulates to be 300 million, eventually “stumble across Bitcoin,” this community would double in size instantly.
Some have been a bit skeptical of this theory though. In response to JP Morgan launching its own digital asset, the now-infamous JPM Coin, Brad Garlinghouse, the chief executive of Ripple Labs, took to Twitter to claim that the institutional stablecoin is much like launching “AOL after Netscape’s IPO.”
And as Travis Kling of Ikigai Capital Management adds, JPM Coin resembles a Google Sheet or Excel spreadsheet, rather than a decentralized, permissionless network in Bitcoin. These quips lend to the theory that centralized digital assets may hamper Bitcoin’s development.