Regulated Fintech Firm Monerium to Issue E-Money on Algorand Blockchain
Iceland-based Monerium, which features a European Economic Area (EEA) e-money license, has entered into a non-exclusive partnership with Algorand. Announced Tuesday, the deal will see the 2 companies collaborate on developing "real-world use cases that are enabled by advanced blockchain technology" using Monerium's "programmable" e-money, consistent with W. Sean Ford, Algorand's COO.
Monerium allows clients to develop blockchain-based financial services, like cross-border settlements, using any fiat currency of choice like the euro, British pound or U.S. dollar. The firm holds clients' deposits of fiat currency and releases them in digital form to be used on a blockchain.
The company said digital fiat currencies can create effective cost savings by removing intermediaries and enabling new complex payment types.
Established in 2016, Monerium made the news when ConsenSys invested in its $2 million seed round in 2019. The e-money license granted by the Icelandic Financial Supervisory Authority in June 2019, allows the firm to work across the EEA, which incorporates EU countries also as Norway and Liechtenstein.
Algorand was unveiled in 2017 as a blockchain with a highly scalable consensus algorithm. The brainchild of celebrated cryptographer Silvio Micali, it's attracted substantial interest from investors, raising quite $60 million in late 2018 and completing a $60 million token sale in only four hours last summer. A fund specifically for investing within the Algorand ecosystem received $200 million in commitments from investors including NGC Ventures and Arrington XRP Capital in October.
In November, Algorand went through a big update that, among other things, added support for smart contracts and decentralized finance (DeFi) features. That included a replacement asset tokenization facility and batch transaction functionality enabling sophisticated transactions – including circular trades and internal account settlements – in one trade.
"Algorand incorporates key features for several mainstream use-cases, including stateless smart contracts and scaleable proof-of-stake consensus," said Sveinn Valfells, co-founder and CEO of Monerium. "The Algorand leadership has taken a practical and deliberate approach in designing a blockchain for mainstream applications while staying on the brink of the ethos of the open source community."
"Supporting new blockchains with mainstream relevance may be a priority for Monerium," he added.