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IBM Could Team With Facebook On Libra Currency

Tech giant IBM said it is receptive to helping Facebook on its Libra cryptocurrency plans, CNBC reported on Monday (Sept. 12).

Jason Kelley, IBM’s general manager of blockchain services, said IMB is hoping to cultivate blockchain “collaboration” throughout various sectors.

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

Firms such as IBM have begun creating their own blockchain systems in order to have greater transparency of data with networks of computers.

Kelley did not clarify if IBM wanted to join the Libra Association but said Facebook’s entry in the industry helps boost its legitimacy.

Kelley also discussed the importance of differentiating cryptocurrencies and the “tokenization” of assets.

“We talk about Libra and people say it’s just another crypto,” he said. “Set crypto aside and talk about tokenization, because that’s what we’re talking about.”

Facebook’s Libra coin will be backed by currencies like the dollar, unlike bitcoin, which isn’t backed by anything. The Swiss Libra Association will oversee the currency and is comprised of companies such as Visa, Mastercard and Uber.

But Facebook has encountered regulatory scrutiny over its proposed digital currency, with lawmakers, bankers and others expressing caution, and in some cases resistance.

In July, IBM partnered with ANZ, Commonwealth Bank, Scentre Group and Westpac to launch a live pilot for Lygon, a new digital platform using blockchain technology to digitize the bank guarantee process needed for retail property leases.

While bank guarantees have primarily been issued manually and on paper, digitizing the process reduces the risk of fraud, decreases the chance for errors and significantly speeds up the entire process. In fact, initial findings show that the Lygon platform could reduce the time it takes to issue a bank guarantee from up to a month to on or around the same day.

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