Blockchain Consultancy Firm Chief Hired to Help Launch Sovereign (SOV)

Francisco Memoria

The Marshall Islands, a small country in the Pacific Ocean, has recently revealed that it hired Steve Tendon, the head of blockchain consultancy firm ChainStrategies, as its cryptocurrency advisor.

Notably the country has announced last year that it’s looking to launch its own national cryptocurrency called Sovereign (SOV). Tendon is set to help it develop Sovereign, and assist its government with “the drafting, design, and issuance of their new cryptocurrency.”

Tendon is notably the founder and President of the Blockchain Malta Association, and acts as a Chief Technology Officer at Anticipay, a fintech firm. In the past, he was a Strategic Advisor to Malta’s Prime Minister, when the nation was focusing on attracting blockchain and cryptocurrency-related companies.

Its efforts worked, as it attracted some of the most prominent in the industry, including leading cryptocurrency exchanges like Binance and OKEx, which was named “crypto exchange of the year” at its cryptocurrency conference.

Tendon isn’t, however, the only notable adviser Sovereign will have. The cryptocurrency’s Chief Economist is Peter Dittus, according to a post on SOV’s Medium blog, the former Secretary General of the Bank for International Settlements.

Dittus was quoted as saying:

Steve is one of the foremost experts in blockchain technology and regulations. [He] will assist with the drafting and designing of regulations to develop a blockchain financial services economy out of the Marshall Islands.

Per the blog post, the Marshall Islands are looking to evolve “in a similar way to the Cayman Islands,” a territory that it claims incorporates “5% of the world’s hedge funds despite having a similar population to the Marshall Islands.”

Notably, as CryptoGlobe covered, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) has warned the nation not to launch the cryptocurrency as second form of legal tender (along with the USD). Per the IMF, the issuance of a decentralized cryptocurrency as a second legal tender would “increase macroeconomic and financial integrity risks, and elevate the risk of losing the last U.S. dollar correspondent banking relationship.”

Facebook’s Digital Wallet Subsidiary Calibra Rebrands to Novi

Facebook’s digital wallet subsidiary Calibra has rebranded to Novi, a name that was inspired on the Latin words “novus” and “via,” meaning new and way, respectively.

The rebrand came with a new design meant to represent the “fluid movement of digital currencies,” while maintaining the Libra icon on its logo. An announcement the firm published reads:

While we’ve changed our name from Calibra, we haven’t changed our long-term commitment to helping people around the world access affordable financial services.

The announcement details that users will be able to use the Novi wallet as a standalone app to send and receive Libra digital currencies, and that it will also be integrated into Facebook’s Messenger and WhatsApp applications.

Per the announcement the wallet will include “no hidden charges,” and transactions will be instant. To use Novi, customers will have to be verified using government-issued ID, and “fraud protections” will be built-in to prevent illicit uses.

It further added that Novi hopes to launch when the “Libra network is available.” An initial launch will only include a specific set of countries, and the firm will have a customer support team available 24/7 to help out its users.

In a FAQ section on Novi’s website,e the firm seems to imply there will be minimal to no transaction fees, as the answer starts with a “what you send is what they get,” before adding users won’t have to worry about hidden charges. It concludes Novi is “cutting fees to help people keep more of their money.”

On social media Kevin Weil,co-creator of Libra and Novi’s VP of Product explained the rebrand came as it could be confusing for people to have two different organizations, the Libra Association and Facebook’s Libra wallet subsidiary, with such similar names.

Featured image via Unsplash.