Facebook was founded in the year 2004 mainly as a social network company, Facebook initially launched to connect Harvard University students together. Facebook was not originally created to be a company. It was built to accomplish a social mission – to make the world more open and connected
In 2019, Facebook counted almost 2.5 billion users worldwide, making it the largest social network. The chief promise of Facebook is that its service is free, and always will be. Over the years, the company boosted its advertising revenues, while constant growth reflected on the market capitalization.
Facebook went public in 2012, when it had accrued over one billion users, a milestone for any company. The company debuted with 421 million shares, and was considered one of the biggest tech IPOs in history. After negotiating on a per-share range of between $28 and $38, Faccebook went public with a price of $26.81, sparking hopes for an ultra-growth valuation.
Facebook (NASDAQ:FB) now trades at around $251.36, reaching new price records after a successful 2019.
It was during the biggest crypto boom that Facebook set entirely different priorities. Initially, Facebook had little to do with Bitcoin or crypto assets, only exercising caution and banning crypto-related ads in early 2018.
Facebook’s Libra project was announced in June 2019, just after a few months of significantly improving performance on the cryptocurrency markets. Libra, a digital coin complete with an ecosystem and a wallet. David Marcus was put at the helm of the project. Facebook obtained multiple ideas from the crypto space and waited for more innovation in building networks.
Facebook’s Libra, it became known, would not copy Bitcoin. Instead, it would resemble coins like TRON and EOS, which used a series of delegates to produce blocks. Facebook, with its big influence, went further and enlisted many big companies to participate in the Libra Association. Among the listed were large telecoms, as well as VISA, MasterCard, and a handful of other payment processing companies.
Libra has been running as a testnet token, inviting developers to add use cases. The Calibra wallet has been created, though it is useless without the mainnet token launch.
According to David Marcus, the Libra project will aim to build a new protocol for money, and still sticks to its original purpose to give access to the unbanked.
The Libra Association is still gathering new members, the entity has gained regulatory approval in the canton of Zug, Switzerland, thus making use of the regulatory climate in what has become known as “Crypto Valley.”
Some Central banks in Europe and Asia have also spoken against Libra, suggesting it may lead to the formation of a grey economy and reduce financial transparency. So far, there has been no clarity on how funds would be transferred or exchanged for Libra tokens.
It is possible Libra may be used within the Facebook ecosystem, Libra has the potential to reach millions of unbanked in almost all world regions, but the acceptance may be a lengthy process with regulatory hurdles.
Latest news reports state that development continues, with crypto markets starting the year on a high note, there may be more demand for this digital asset. However, there is still no confirmation about its launch.