David Marcus, one of the co-creators of the Libra cryptocurrency, announced that Facebook has created Facebook Financial, a new unit to integrate financial services within the social network.
F2, this in short the name of the new unit, will have to integrate payment systems within the various platforms managed by the web giant, from Facebook to WhatsApp.
If anyone thinks this is the end of Libra, Facebook’s cryptocurrency project that is unable to take off, they are wrong:
Today we're creating a new group to look after all things payments/FS @Facebook (FB Pay, Novi, WhatsApp payments, …). With that, I'm excited to welcome @skasriel to look after FB Payments. No changes @Novi, which I'll continue to lead directly.
— David Marcus (@davidmarcus) August 10, 2020
“No changes for Novi, which I’ll continue to lead directly”.
The tweet by Marcus leaves no room for doubt, this is an enhancement of Facebook’s strategy to expand financial services, but without changing the plans for Libra, of which Novi is the wallet.
In fact, Marcus will remain in charge of Novi, while Facebook Financial will be headed by Stephan Kasriel, current vice president of Facebook, with a background in PayPal.
Libra continues even with Facebook Financial
Facebook Financial will study how to integrate and streamline payment systems into the various platforms of Facebook. Currently, the social network also manages WhatsApp, Messenger and Instagram, apps used by billions of users.
The philosophy behind Mark Zuckerberg’s group remains to make payments as easy as sharing photos on WhatsApp. The decision to create F2 should be understood in this regard.
For Facebook, the path is all uphill, given the hostility of regulators, especially for the United States.
But with the recent letter sent to the US OCC, Novi reiterated the web giant’s willingness to cooperate with the authorities. The letter was a response to the OCC’s initiative which opened the door to the possibility of banks offering cryptocurrency custody services.
This system, that of banks and money management, was indirectly bypassed by Facebook on the day it announced its cryptocurrency, Libra, potentially destined for the 2 billion users of the social network.
In short, it was Facebook that started a revolution that is changing the approach to financial services.