Just like Facebook with Libra, the American supermarket giant Walmart has applied for a patent for its own cryptocurrency. An expert thinks that the cryptocurrency of Walmart might be better with supervisors than the Libra.
Senior policy analyst at investment bank Cowen, Jaret Seiberg, believes that the cryptocurrency of Walmart can just get the green light. He thinks that Walmart’s ambitions are less global and less comprehensive than what Libra intends.
Walmart has already applied for a patent, but recently stated that they now have no plans to release a cryptocurrency in the near future. Compare this with Facebook, where Libra and the accompanying wallet, Calibra, can actually go live once approval has been given.
The plans that Walmart has hinted is that their cryptocurrency only becomes a currency for the closed environment of their own retail chain. Cash can be exchanged for “Walmart Coin” and it can be spent at any store location. You could even compare it to loyalty points, or the loyalty points of different Dutch supermarket chains. The value of the currency must be stable because it is linked to the dollar.
Compare this with the global ambitions of Libra, then the Walmart plan is not ambitious at all.
Walmart’s plans can be counterbalanced by smaller banks and lenders. In the end, Seiberg does not expect lawmakers to raise Walmart too many barriers. And suppose the Walmart coin proves to be successful, it opens doors for competing chain stores, which can issue their own.
In that respect, Libra has a harder time, they stumble upon regulations of almost every government. And if they want to realize their ambition to go live in 2020, then they have to find a solution for this (read: hiring lobbyists).
Speaking of which, Facebook has hired the former assistant chairman of the US Senate Banking Committee, Susan Zook, to lobby. The company has already spent more than $ 7.5 million this year on lobbyists for Libra. In addition to their own lobbyists, Facebook also uses lobby groups such as the Sternhell Group, the Cypress Group and law firm Davis Polk to lobby for Libra.