OpenLibra 'Members' Deny Involvement in Project After Devcon Announcement

Neil Dennis

OpenLibra - the permissionless fork of Facebook's Libra stablecoin project, unveiled at DevCon on Wednesday - has misrepresented the organizations involved, according to a report from Coindesk.

The project listed 30 individuals and organizations - claiming they were either partners or potential partners, but failing to specify which.

Four such organizations and individuals named as collaborators on OpenLibra have said they had no involvement in the project, while a few others have said the extent of their participation was overplayed.

Four Deny Involvement

Sunny Aggarwal, a developer at blockchain startup Tendermint, and representatives from Chainlink, the smart contracts host, Web3 Foundation, the decentralized internet company, and Hashed, the early stage venture fund, all said their names had been used without permission on the presentation slides that introduced OpenLibra at DevCon.

Zeke Turner, head of communications at Web3 Foundation, told Coindesk: "We're not opposed to OpenLibra, We're just not a part of it."

Lucas Geiger, founder of the OpenLibra project, sent a message on Telegram - seen by CoinDesk - to Chainlink chief executive Sergey Nazorov apologising for the oversight. It said:

We’ve been in a rush preparing materials, and my team took a list I had of partners and potential partners and put it on the site. It’s removed now. Apologies for the trouble that [this has] caused. I should have reviewed more closely.


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Binance Invests in Company Behind World’s First KRW-Backed Stablecoin

On Wednesday (January 15), Binance announced that it had invested in BxB, the FinTech startup behind KRWb, the world's first fully-collateralized South Korean won (KRW) backed stablecoin.

As Alex Friedberg, a Co-Founder of Singapore-based Block by Block (BXB) Capital, which has also invested in this project, explained in a Medium blog post on 29 January 2019, KRWb is "an ERC-20 token that is issued at a 1:1 ratio to, and collateralized by, fiat deposits denominated in Korean Won (KRW), the national currency of South Korea."

The BxB team say that these are the main features of HRWb:

  • Global Accessibility: "Accessible and transferrable by any token holder globally – Korean, non-Korean and corporate entities"
  • Security: "Fully funded and backed by fiat, third party auditors, major Korean banks, and Korean civil/commercial law"
  • Transparency: "Tokens in circulation will match bank funds 100%, verifiable via independent 3rd party audits"

According to KRWb's whitepaper, crypto investors "may use KRWb as a stable asset for storage of value, to hedge F/X risks or to profit from arbitrage opportunities, contributing in turn to the growth of the market by increasing liquidity among cryptocurrency exchanges." It also states that "BxB is fully committed to ensure that all safeguards, such as periodic bank statement reports and independent audits of reserves, pledge over the accounts holding the backing fiat KRW funds via independent third parties are in place in order to maintain transparency and reliability."

Binance Co-Founder and CEO Changpeng Zhao (aka "CZ") had this to say about his company's latest partnership:

We are continuously working with local partners across regions to jointly realize our shared mission in furthering cryptocurrency adoption globally. This investment is another step forward in exploring avenues of growth in Korea, which is an industry-leading market strongly positioned to stimulate blockchain innovation throughout Asia.

CZ went on to say that details about this partnership will be announced in the near future:

We are currently developing future plans for the Korean market with BxB and hope to share more developments from our partnership soon.

As for Jiho Kang, a Co-Founder and Managing Partner of BxB, he said:

BxB’s focus has always been to contribute safe and stable industry growth in Korea as a locally rooted company. We are very excited to partner with Binance and looking forward to providing a service that’s both meaningful and useful to our communities and the Korean market while ensuring proper diligence from the formulation of the business and full regulatory compliance.

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