Meta Digest

Meta to Pull the Plug on Crypto Project in September

Meta's crypto wallet to be repurposed for future metaverse initiatives

When cryptocurrency was in full swing. Many sought to take advantage of the digital trend, including Facebook (later rebranded as Meta).

The social media giant made its way into the crypto space three years ago with the Libra project. However, while other brands were successful, Facebook fell flat.

CEO Mark Zuckerberg announced on Friday. That the recently-launched digital wallet payments pilot Novi would end on September 1st, ending the Libra stablecoin experiment.

Users are makes aware of the statement via the platform’s website. Where links to the notice are provide along with a request to withdraw their funds “as quickly as possible.”

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From July 21, users will be unable to add money to their accounts. The Novi app and its WhatsApp account will also become void. When the pilot ends, users will be unable to access their transaction history and other data.

Calibra was the original name of Meta’s wallet for the libra coin  which then transitions to Novi. It became public in June 2019. As the project change course due to regulatory pressure, Novi’s position change.

It became a money-transfer pilot for crypto-based remittances in 2020 but never gained traction beyond the US and Guatemala.

Despite the decision to pull the plug on the Novi pilot. Meta revealed it would repurpose the technology for future products. Especially with the metaverse initiative around the corner.

“We are already leveraging the years spent on building capabilities for Meta. Overall on blockchain and introducing new products, such as digital collectibles,” said Meta in its email. 

“You can expect to see more from us in the Web3 space because we are very optimistic about the value. These technologies can bring to people and businesses in the metaverse.”

Meanwhile, Meta has started exploring efforts to support NFTs on its sites.

Although the company do have stablecoin-oriented plans for Novi. They are force to scrap them when Meta faced regulatory pushback for its ability to combat money laundering. Also protect consumers, and monitor other security and financial risks, scaling back and rebranding in the process.

In January, the company sold the successor Diem project’s assets to crypto-oriented bank Silvergate Capital for $200 million.

Meta’s decision to close the Libra chapter follows a downturn in the crypto markets as the industry contends with layoffs and other businesses like Celsius and Voyager face solvency issues.

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