In 2020, Circle has decided to focus exclusively on the growth and development of its stablecoin USDC and hive of other businesses that cannot be synergized with it.
USDC is the fastest-growing stablecoin globally. Circle manages it through a consortium of industries called CENTRE. USDC can be used for making payments, investments, and trading on the Circle platform. These services help in the growth of USDC. While the applications are the customer-facing layer, it is the underlying technologies that ensure robust custody, risk management, card gateways, etc. that have led to the growth and wide adoption of USDC.
In 2020, Circle has decided to unveil its APIs to the outside world. It will offer its APIs to businesses and individuals who can create new DApps. This will lead to accelerated growth and development of both the Circle platform and USDC.
Circle has decided to throw its lot with stablecoin and maintain a razor-sharp focus on their goal; it has been decided to hive-off businesses not aligning with their vision.
Circle has sold its Circle Trade OTC business to cryptocurrency exchange Kraken. It has assured customers that there will be no dip in the quality of OTC service at Kraken. OTC services are generally offered only by cryptocurrency exchanges because they have the infrastructure in place to convert a range of fiat currency into cryptocurrency and vice versa. Thus, companies that offer OTC just because it’s lucrative will never be able to compete with firms like Kraken, who have an existing infrastructure for such services.
Circle has also sold its cryptocurrency exchange Poloniex to an Asian investment firm. Poloniex was finding it difficult to flourish under an uncertain regulatory regime for cryptocurrencies in the US. Especially with cryptocurrency exchanges springing in countries with a more accommodating approach towards cryptocurrency like Malta, several countries in the Caribbean.
Circle has also closed its Circle Pay payments application. The technologies developed for handling thousands of transactions in Circle Pay will be made available to developers and businesses coming aboard to Circle Platform in 2020.
SeedInvest, a Broker-Dealer and Alternative Trading System will continue to operate as an affiliate of Circle.
Changes have also been made at the organizational level.
Among the two founders of Circle, Sean, and Jeremy, Sean will resign as Co-CEO and function as an independent director on the Circle Board of Directors. He will also remain associated with CENTRE to find solutions for infrastructure and policy challenges.
Circle Chief Financial Officer Naeem Ishaaq and Chief Legal Officer Gus Coldebella will also be leaving the company.
Circle believes that the world is more accepting stablecoins than other cryptocurrencies because it is less volatile. Central banks globally are also looking to integrate cryptocurrency with their systems to get twin benefits of faster and cheaper transactions but without the volatility. Thus, they are also gravitating towards developing their own stablecoins. Circle is very excited to offer APIs to enterprises looking to develop their use cases.