An AUD-pegged stablecoin is coming to Australia with Bit Trade
The ability to move money at the speed of data, without the usual crypto downsides, is a powerful tool.
Stablecoins are well and truly in season now, with several unique offerings arriving in just the last couple of weeks. The most distinctive might be the Winklevoss twins' Gemini Dollar, a high profile and high-transparency collateralised Tether competitor, and ndau, the world's first unpegged stablecoin.
And now, an AUD-pegged collateralised stablecoin, courtesy of Bit Trade and Emparta. The so far unnamed new stablecoin will be designed to facilitate real direct crypto payments in conjunction with Emparta's blockchain employment infrastructure and Bit Trade's market services.
"We are excited to be partnering with Emparta and see enormous opportunities for the stablecoin in the Australian market," said Bit Trade managing director and co-founder Jonathan Miller. "The stablecoin is a core part of the Emparta Employment Infrastructure, Identity and Payments platform. We look forward to being one of the very first users of the stablecoin."
"The need for an Aussie dollar-backed and redeemable coin is essential for the broader market adoption of digital currency throughout Australia and the world," said Emparta CEO Adam Sarris. "We see multiple uses for the stablecoin, and our partnership with Bit Trade enables us to maximise its utilisation and work with some of the most talented and experienced blockchain experts in Australia."
It's not the first Australian stablecoin project though. The third-gen uncollateralised Havven project sprang up in Australia as one of the first to explore the idea of a stablecoin supported by a self-sustaining algorithmic economy.
But that might be a bridge too far for real adoption.
An Australian dollar stablecoin that's transparently backed with a cold hard fiat treasury might be a much more reliable option for businesses and consumers that want to unlock the benefits of digital currency today, rather than gamble on a more experimental project. Plus, Havven uses a US dollar peg, which obviously isn't quite as useful in Australia.
"We are very different to Havven in that our stablecoin is designed for cash-based redemption and has a treasury collateralised with fiat currency," Sarris notes.
The best of both worlds
Emparta has every reason to be interested in an AUD stablecoin. Among its other features, Emparta lets businesses optionally pay employee wages in crypto, without the employer needing to hold and manage crypto, and is currently focusing its efforts on the enormous market for overseas workers.
The ability to move money with the speed and ease of moving data is a powerful advantage, and a collateralised AUD stablecoin retains the non-crypto benefits of concrete value and a stable price in Australia, while also enjoying the crypto advantages of seamless cross-border payments, plus frictionless, near-instant remittances for workers who want to send money home to their families.
As such, this new AUD stablecoin can deliver some very real benefits for workers who elect to be paid by it, and their employers, with minimal downsides.
"The ability to receive income payments in crypto, including a fully redeemable stablecoin is a key part of our service offering," Sarris says. "We have big plans for the stablecoin and the role it will play both for Emparta and beyond as we move into our next phase of growth."
"Beyond the obvious attraction for crypto traders, other key uses case for the stablecoin include a fiat (currency) on and off ramp for decentralised applications, as well as point-of-sale and escrow payments."
"We are continually intrigued by the myriad of use cases for cryptocurrency and blockchain and see a huge benefit for implementation of this technology into the Emparta employment services infrastructure, such as wage payments in cryptocurrency," Miller added.
But naturally, it's still of great interest to crypto traders, Miller observes. The ability to near-instantly convert volatile crypto to nice stable AUD during market downturns, without the costs of needing to go all the way to fiat, is a powerful part of any crypto trader's toolkit.
"Market volatility in the digital currency space makes a stablecoin a very attractive refuge for investors seeking stable returns and paves the way forward for a new way to access digital currencies in Australia," Miller said.
Australia is getting a reputation for its crypto sensibility, and a reliable AUD stablecoin might be a significant ingredient.
Disclosure: At the time of writing the author holds ETH, IOTA, ICX, VET, XLM, BTC, ADA