What Will Facebook’s Libra Look Like When it Launches?

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  • Facebook’s Libra token could be set for a January launch, 18 months after its announcement
  • The new coin could be vastly different from the original concept
  • The new Libra may be backed only by the dollar as opposed to a basket of currencies

Facebook’s Libra token made headlines all over the world when it launched its whitepaper in June 2019. A year and a half of tumult later, including government pushback and backers pulling out, it might be finally ready for release. But what will it look like and how will it compare to its original implementation?

Libra Could Launch in January After Troubled Time

After 18 months of disruptions, alterations, and complications, The Financial Times reported on Friday that Facebook’s Libra token could finally see the light of day in January next year. Back in June 2019 when Facebook went live with its concept for Libra, politicians and central banks all over the globe baulked at the idea of a private, centralized currency being used in the same way as fiat currencies.

Since then Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg has been hauled over the coals by congress, and institutional backers have left the Libra Association. More critically however, Libra has had to be adapted to get it past regulators and even have a sniff at being launched.

Facebook Shifts Focus and Goes Dollar-only

Initially, Facebook proposed that Libra would be a single coin backed by a basket of existing currencies, but this was altered by the Libra Association in April following regulatory pushback. The alternative of a number of currencies plus a “digital composite” was proposed, but the Financial Times understands that this has now been shelved in favor of
a single dollar-backed stablecoin.

While regulators will be pleased with the new Libra, which falls in line with the concept of a Central Bank Digital Currency (CBDC), the move to a move to single-currency coin work out worse for Facebook users looking to convert currencies, given fluctuating exchange rates and associated costs, which would drastically undermine the company’s aim of financial inclusion.