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PayPal confirms reports it is “exploring” stablecoin launch

PayPal has confirmed numerous reports that it is working on a stablecoin.

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PayPal confirms reports it is “exploring” stablecoin

Jose Fernandez da Ponte, senior vice president of crypto and digital currencies at PayPal, confirmed: “We are exploring a stablecoin; if and when we seek to move forward, we will of course, work closely with relevant regulators.”

The reports first surfaced last May. At the time, sources said that the PayPal was holding talks with third-party start-ups in the crypto space as part of this process.

A spokesperson had said that the firm was exploring applications of digital currency as part of its offerings but “rumours and speculation are not predictive of the company’s future plans.”

Last week, Bloomberg reported that code embedded in PayPal’s iOS app highlighted a so-called “PayPal Coin” that included its own logo. A representative told the outlet that this code was developed during an internal hackathon.

The evidence of PayPal’s stablecoin was first spotted by developer Steve Moser. He noticed hidden code and images in PayPal’s app showing work on “PayPal coin” that is backed by the US dollar.

A spokeswoman explained that the images and code inside the Paypal app are from a recent internal hackathon. This means the final logo, name, and features of the stablecoin could be different from what’s currently shown in the code.

In October 2020, PayPal made waves with its announcement that it was adding crypto to its payments app, allowing users of its main service as well as Venmo to purchase and hold crypto. The payments firm has since expanded its work in this area as part of a dedicated business unit.

Fernandez da Ponte recently said on the Unchained podcast that PayPal has “not yet seen a stablecoin out there that is purpose-built for payments.”

Noting that a stablecoin would need to support payments at scale and have security for the payments giant’s use, he opined: “There would have to be clarity on the regulation, the regulatory frameworks, and the type of licenses that are needed in this space.”

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