Globally, the highest level of governments and some of the largest, most sophisticated businesses have taken concrete steps to leverage the power of USDC in recent weeks. These actions will help transform the current financial system and are a testament to how far the use of dollar digital currencies has come.
Between developments like the Biden Administration’s executive order on digital assets and regulatory interest from Congress and U.K. regulators, involvement from the highest officials is indicative of how blockchain finance is coming of age. Innovations like USD Coin (USDC), one of the fastest growing dollar digital assets in the world, are gaining traction because of the potential to change our current financial system.
Adoption of USDC among traditional financial institutions and a willingness to test and learn are also trends signaling crypto's rite of passage into the mainstream. Circle has made several announcements in the past month underscoring exciting developments in crypto adoption – here’s a brief explainer of what they mean:
Building Bridges to Traditional Finance
Circle has selected BNY Mellon to be a primary custodian for USDC reserves. With over 200 years of experience in global capital markets, BNY Mellon’s collaboration with Circle will facilitate an exchange of expertise on a range of topics across digital and traditional financial markets.
Circle also recently announced a $400 million dollar funding round that included news of BlackRock entering into a broader strategic partnership with Circle that includes exploring capital market applications for USDC.
BlackRock and BNY Mellon’s involvement in Circle shows growing institutional conviction in USDC – which provides financial innovation while maintaining trust, stability and resilience.
USDC in Traditional Payments
Singapore-based FOMO Pay became the first major payment institution in Southeast Asia to integrate USDC into its services – allowing merchant, corporate and financial institution clients to seamlessly convert between USDC and fiat currency.
Worldpay from FIS* announced that it will be the first global merchant acquirer to offer merchants the ability to receive settlement directly in USDC. This integration will enable crypto-native and traditional businesses to be able to build a fit-for-purpose settlement and treasury strategy that caters to crypto or fiat currencies for conducting business.
Stripe has also initiated a pilot that will facilitate USDC payouts on the Polygon network to a select group of creators on Twitter, as part of a larger effort to help freelancers, service providers, and sellers get paid easier and faster.
These collaborations exemplify the most fundamental USDC use case: A “digital dollar” that allows for frictionless exchange of financial value and the direct connection to a broader financial sphere.
Circle Impact: Delivering Humanitarian Aid
USDC has also proven to be a powerful tool in providing humanitarian relief in a manner that is quick and efficient. This year, Circle continued that trend and made a $250K USDC donation to The Giving Block in a show of solidarity to Ukraine. In total, Ukraine has received more than $100M in crypto donations from across the world.
Circle Impact’s efforts to boost financial inclusion by allocating a share of USDC dollar-denominated reserves to often underrepresented Minority-owned Depository Institutions (MDIs) and Community Banks, and establishing a Digital Finance Literacy Initiative at Historically Black Colleges and Universities like Bowie State University is another example of how stablecoin technologies can be a force for good. It’s Circle’s hope that USDC and other blockchain innovations continue to make a positive impact.
These USDC developments are just the seedlings of greater change that Circle is ushering. As incumbent payment processing and banking companies begin to adopt blockchain and crypto infrastructure for payments, Circle has been and will continue as an important infrastructure provider for the next generation of internet-based financial services. Circle will also continue to champion the U.S. dollar as the currency of the internet through USDC, reinforcing the United States’ leadership in principled innovation and competition in the financial sector.
Circle’s work in this space will further its mission to grow global financial inclusion, to broaden access to essential financial services, and to push for greater efficiency and transactional freedom. The future of finance is here, and Circle will continue to stay the course on the path forward.
*Worldpay and Circle recently entered into a Memorandum of Understanding covering technology integrations needed to support USDC settlement.