Vodafone Backs Out of Facebook’s Libra Cryptocurrency
Telecommunications giant Vodafone became the latest in a string of companies to ditch Facebook’s cryptocurrency project, Libra.
A Vodafone spokesperson said in a statement that the company was leaving the project in order to focus its resources on M-Pesa, a mobile money platform with a presence across a number of African countries.
“We have said from the outset that Vodafone’s desire is to make a genuine contribution to extending financial inclusion,” the Vodafone spokesperson explained. “We remain fully committed to that goal. At the moment, we believe we can most effectively bring affordable financial services to the world’s poor by focusing on M-Pesa.”
Vodafone joins payments giants Mastercard and Visa that withdrew from Libra last October following heavy scrutiny of Facebook’s embattled digital currency from American regulators and politicians.
The bulk of the criticism centers on concerns over Libra’s regulatory uncertainty and the apparent risks it poses to the financial system.
PayPal, eBay, Stripe, Mercado Pago, and Booking Holdings have also pulled out of the scheme, dealing a huge blow to Facebook’s vision of a global currency.
But despite losing eight of its founding members, the Libra Association is projecting a positive outlook for the year ahead.
“The Association is continuing the work to achieve a safe, transparent, and consumer-friendly implementation of the Libra payment system,” said the association’s head of policy and communications, Dante Disparte.