MoneyGram, the traditional, big player in cross-border payments, has announced that it has partnered with Stellar Blockchain network to facilitate users to transfer money instantly with Circle’s USDC stablecoin.
The Roll Out Plan
The firms are planning to roll out the pilot in Q4 of 2021 and then go for a gradual rollout beginning early 2022. The rollout in 2022 will enable the stablecoin link for crypto and local currencies. This will help connect MoneyGram’s approximately 150 million consumers.
This move is radical in that it enables the exchange of cryptocurrency for fiat and vice versa. This new partnership planned with Stellar is very different from MoneyGram’s earlier partnership with Ripple. Ripple’s partnership used the on-demand liquidity (ODL) of the crypto company to enable foreign exchange(FX) trading. The new partnership with Stellar envisages a larger play since it deals with consumer payments.
For the new partnership between MoneyGram and Circle, United Texas Bank will be the settlement bank. This move is expected to benefit both the bank and the state of Texas. United Texas Bank is being a pioneer among banks by being progressive and stepping into this space. The bank has always been focused on emerging opportunities in the crypto domain.
The crypto space is also increasingly becoming highly regulated. However, this does not worry Alex Holmes, the CEO and Chairman of MoneyGram. According to Holmes, “a lot of regulation ends up being a look back.” Holmes believes that the blockchain space and the digital space are accelerating. It is not surprising, therefore, that we have the regulators trying to catch up.