Facebook Libra finds a friend in IBM

Facebook Libra finds a friend in IBM

Ever since Facebook announced its intention to launch Libra, it has received nothing but criticism and opposition—until IBM came along. According to a report by CNBC, the tech giant is open to working with Facebook on its crypto venture. 

IBM has been one of the leading blockchain solutions developers, partnering with several industry titans, from Nestle to Walmart and Lenovo. And according to Jason Kelley, IBM’s general manager for blockchain services, the company is looking at expanding these partnerships.

He stated, “Blockchain is a team sport. Our clients are ready to work with (Facebook) and we’re ready to work with all of them to bring it together.”

It’s important to distinguish between ‘the talk of cryptocurrencies and tokenization,’ he continued. He commented, “We talk about Libra and people say it’s just another crypto. Set crypto aside and talk about tokenization, because that’s what we’re talking about.”

The entrance of Facebook into the industry helps boost its legitimacy, Kelley believes. He declined from revealing whether IBM intends on joining the Libra Association, the body that’s mandated with overseeing the issuance and governance of Libra. The consortium has enlisted some heavyweights such as Visa, Mastercard and Uber, with its sight set on at least 100 members by the time Libra launches.

This might end up being just a pipe dream for Facebook, however. As the social media giant plans on listing more members to the consortium, those already in it are seeking an exit. According to a report by The Financial Times, two of the members are already exploring the possibility of quitting, with a third voicing their concern over the increased regulatory scrutiny that has resulted from its association with Libra.

And while IBM may be enthusiastic about working with Facebook on Libra, lawmakers have been adamant against the project. In Europe, there have been a number of moves already that are geared towards ensuring Facebook doesn’t get its way. The French Minister Bruno Le Maire recently declared that due to all the risks it poses to financial systems in the region, the country wouldn’t “authorize the development of Libra on European soil.”

Germany has also revealed that it will enact a law that will bar any private stablecoin from operating in the country. This will deny Libra a very key market in Europe and more importantly, it could lead the other European nations to blocking Libra as well.

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