In the mid 2010s, cryptocurrency was the next big savior for all things remittances. There was a huge promise of crypto being the final disruptor for all things money transfer.
Sadly, it never happened. Many startups that were going to utilize crypto, went under or pivoted away. Mass adoption never came. I believe with the emergence of crypto exchange all over the world, that are attached to the payments/fiat rails in various countries. the game has changed once again.
This time around, I believe small money transfer operators and startups will embrace such exchanges, their networks, the pools of liquidity for what I would like to call, remittances 2.0.
Hello. My name is Faisal Khan. I am a banking and a payment consultant.
I want to talk today about what I would consider Remittances 2.0. Specifically, with respect to crypto. In the previous era, about let’s say three or four years ago when the cryptocurrency came out and became mainstream, a lot of companies saw it as a differentiator for cross-border transmission. For making transfers from, you know, USA to Philippines or from UK to Nigeria, etc.
But it really didn’t pan out. You know, a lot of companies went under or they pivoted. Companies like Aligned Technologies wanted to do remittances using Bitcoin, now they’re called Veem and they do B2B payments, they have dropped crypto altogether and there are countless other examples of the very same notion that you would take crypto, you do cross-border transfers and you make it work, you make it cheaper, faster, more efficient. Truth is, it never worked out. Like I said, not many companies went down.
So what’s it different this time? Why am I gung ho this time that there is going to be a, let’s say, 2020 onwards maybe 2021, there is going to be an offering, a solution offering by companies that really is going to be used? I think the differentiator is the exchanges. We have exchanges like Binance, Huobi, and Coinbase, Bitstamp, bitFlyer that have presence in multiple markets or in a particular market where the liquidity is quite strong.
If you look at Binance, you can make an account in Binance and it has, you know, its presence in quite a few countries, quite a few countries. Same thing Huobi and doesn’t just have a presence in those countries. It has access to the on-ramp and the off-ramp, the on rails, the off rails for the fiat to crypto and crypto to fiat. So you could actually if you’re licensed all throughout, you could pick up a transaction from the United States, you can move it onto Kraken or what have you buy this coins, move them into Luno in Nigeria or Binance or something else, and sell it over there.
Now, this may seem very crude and you may ask, well it’s already been happening. Yes, it was happening, but not really in the way we were thinking. There wasn’t a Luno before, there wasn’t a Binance on all those African countries and Asian countries and South American countries. There wasn’t a bitFlyer, you know, covering Japan and Europe the way it is today.
So I feel that these new exchanges that are going to be part and have their tentacles in every country are going to make a huge difference. So if you are an entrepreneur or a small money transfer operator, that is licensed in one end and you have another licensed party at the other end – I think there’s going to be a huge pivot of these small players moving towards these exchanges incorporating those movements in their money transfer, you know, flow of funds and be settling with parties that they would otherwise, never have settled with before. And I feel quite a few startups are going to come up that are going to be incorporated and be doing something like this.
One startup that I must say that I am an advisor is called ARF – ARF/dot/one – must check them out. They’re also incorporating this thing and I’ll hopefully hope to bring the co-founders of that startup and have an interview with them. But otherwise, you know, I feel that this is the time for Remittances 2.0. This is the time where crypto will truly merge and marry and along and, you know, side by side with the fiat world and make cross-border money transfers more efficient and more cost-effective.
Anyways, if you have a question or a comment on this thing or want to leave me a note, there’s a contact form in the description below. Please fill it out. I’ll be happy to answer. Till next time, have a good one.
This page was last updated on February 4, 2020.