By Bill Taylor/Contributor
A new trend in the cryptocurrency world has already begun but without the hype and pizazz that follows bitcoin, ethereum, etc. around on a daily basis. So what is it? Well, now that I have your attention (hopefully?) let me enlighten you to the new trend – individual companies and institutions issuing their own digital currency.
As we reported recently, Mitsubishi Financial Group (Mitsubishi Bank), one of the worlds largest financial institutions, will be launching its very own cryptocurrency next year. Now you can certainly bet that other large firms are also considering doing the same OR possibly already working toward that end. Should another high profile company (oh, say, Amazon) announce their own digital currency, the stampede will begin and the media will go into a frenzy.
How did (or will) this come about? The rapid acceptance and new applications of blockchain technology, championed by bitcoin, has certainly opened a ‘whole new world’ of possibilities for forward-thinking firms. Blockchain not only offers significant cost savings, and faster transaction speed, BUT also (this is big) the mobility and accessibility via apps on mobile devices. The world is working toward becoming a cashless society so why should there not be “corporate cash” or a corporate digital currency? Companies already issue coupons and mail-in rebate cards, so why not cut those costs by having their own currency?
So which companies might benefit from issuing their own digital currency? It would be a very VERY long list, but lets speculate. Alibaba? Sure, it’s a retailer and a financial giant (Ant Financial) with a couple huge money market funds and is even in the lending business. All very applicable. So, “Babacoin”?
Disney? Certainly. The Disney coin (Mickey Mouse Coin……MMC?) could be used to buy movies and, obviously, be used at their theme parks worldwide without having to worry about currency fluctuations. Delta Airlines? Think about converting those frequent flyer awards to digital and allowing onboard purchases (wifi, drinks, etc.) with “Deltacoin”. (Oh, Air Asia is doing that already).
AND then there’s AMAZON. Think about that. They are.