CTO of Stellar (XLM) Powered Money Transfer Firm Tempo: ‘Crypto Is a Swiss Bank Account for Every Person’

Siamak Masnavi

In a recent interview with Finance Magnates published on 27 August 2018, Anthony Barker, the chief technology officer (CTO) of Stellar (XLM) powered Paris-based international money transfer firm Tempo, explained the advantages of using the Stellar network for cross-border payments, and said that crypto is "sort of like a Swiss bank account for every person."

Tempo Money Transfer (or "Tempo" for short) is an EU-licensed, electronic payment services provider, headquartered in Paris, France. It was founded in 2014 by Jeffrey M Phaneuf (currently, the President), Suren Hayriyan, and Anthony Barker (currently, the CTO). 

In order to reduce costs, increase speed and reliability, Tempo partnered with the Stellar Development Foundation. Stellar is a platform that connects banks, payments systems, and people. The Stellar protocol is supported by the non-profit organization Stellar Development Foundation. Currently, Tempo is the main EU anchor connecting with Stellar to many other payout payers.

Barker started by talking about the focus of his company:

"[Tempo’s] original focus was remittance and international payments, and it’s since sort of switched to small value payments, the stuff that banks don’t handle well."

He then explained because traditional solutions to cross-border payments were slow, expensive, and unreliable, Tempo decide to use blockchain technology. Tempo looked at both Stellar and Ripple, and decided that Stellar was "sort of a natural fit." One of the main reasons for choosing Stellar was because of its non-profit and open-source status:

“My gut reaction was that [Ripple] is not so good for community building... [It’s] much more like a Visa/Mastercard. “I have a strong belief that open systems win in the long run. For example, Stellar has a development challenge [where] they basically give a lot of Lumens away to software developers who are making open-source projects.”

He went to explain how Stellar's flexibility had helped them:

“We worked with Jed McCaleb [Stellar.org co-founder and CTO] and his developers, and we added compliance, so it’s integrated into Stellar as a standard 2nd-layer protocol... so we know how to send first name, last name, and date of birth across... They added that really quickly simply because they’re really focused on this global remittance use case."

At this point is worth saying a few words about Jed McCaleb: prior to co-founding the Stellar Development Foundation with Joyce Kim and working with her to develop the Stellar protocol, he co-founded (with Chris Larsen) Ripple and served as its CTO until 2013. He is also known for creating the ill-fated Bitcoin exchange Mt. Gox.

Barker also talked about why it was important to integrate blockchain technology in such a seamless way that customers do not even realize that behind the scenes a blockchain is handling their payments:

“Our clients are traditional remittance people. They come in with cash and they send their money–they don’t even know in a lot of cases that there’s blockchain behind it, so it’s sort of seamless for the users... [Tempo] looks more like an Asimo or a WorldRemit–much close to that than if you’re using Coinbase or something else, because you don’t have to know about private/public keys; you don’t have to know about losing your keys or any of these things that drive people crazy…all these things that are kind of hard for users are kind of hidden in our service."

Finally, although Barker does not think that crypto will completely replace fiat any time soon, he believes that crypto will play an important role in the future:

"I think [crypto] will pay an important role in the future of the global financial sphere... If you live in a country with inflation, or in a country [where the government] wants to steal your money, it’s sort of like a Swiss bank account for every person.”


Featured Image Courtesy of Tempo

New Public Blockchain Hedera Hashgraph Launches with 26 Dapps

Michael LaVere
  • Hedera Hashgraph launches open access to its mainnet blockchain with 26 dApps. 
  • Network will support 10,000 transactions per second, in addition to smart contracts and file services. 

The Hedera Hashgraph team has announced the successful launch of its public blockchain mainnet on Sept. 16, which includes 26 decentralized applications. 

Hedera Launches Public Mainnet

According to the release, Hedera Hashgraph is now open to the general public after months of being in a closed beta network for select developers.

Hedera claims to be have a faster consensus algorithm than the blockchain used by Ethereum and Bitcoin, capable of supporting 10,000 transactions per second. The open-access mainnet also allows users to operate smart contract and files services, with the team planning to increase the network’s speed “methodically throughout the remainder of 2019.”

Heredera’s Hashgraph achieves this transaction throughput thanks to a unique feature called gossip, which sees nodes within its network share information – gossip - on transactions, and subsequently gossip on gossip to record each event on the network and create a hashgraph of information.

The network reportedly achieves consensus and is secure by a virtual voting process, where the hashgraph technology uses nodes to ensure Byzantine fault tolerance. Hedera further has a Consensus Service under development that will be made available to the public later in the year. 

Mance Harmon, co-founder and CEO of Hedera Hashgraph, said, 

We are thrilled that, through open access, dozens of decentralized applications are now live and running on the mainnet, along with mirror nodes and other parts of the ecosystem designed to expand Hedera’s reach and adoption.

Hedera uses “council members” to run nodes and maintain the decentralization of the blockchain. The 39 council members, which include IBM and Boeing, also govern changes to the software. 

The enterprise-focused network has earlier this week seen its cryptocurrency, HBAR, get listed on leading cryptocurrency trading platform OKEx as three new trading pairs – HBAR/BTC, HBAR/USDT, and HBAR/USDK were added.

In a press release Andy Cheung, OKEx’s Head of Operations, stated:

Hedera and OKEx share the same goal of building a trusted, safe, and fair digital future for everyone through developing a neutral, open-access infrastructure. With such a powerful, enterprise-grade ledger technology, we believe it is a big step forward in mainstream adoption of decentralization. We are excited to support the Hedera platform and continue to lead this industry forward.

To celebrate listing HBAR, the cryptocurrency exchange launched a 500,000 token giveaway that will see holders and market makers who create maker orders on OKEx have a chance to win a share of the HBAR tokens being given away.

The first 5,000 traders to trade a HBAR trading pair, OKEx’s announcement reads, are also entitled to a share of 150,000 of the half a million HBAR being given away, in proportion to the volumes they trade.

Featured Image Credit: Photo via Pixabay.com