It looks like Facebook's Libra cryptocurrency will be dead on arrival.
Visa, Mastercard, eBay, Stripe, and Mercado Pago have all announced they plan to leave the Libra Association, Facebook's upcoming distributed, global cryptocurrency. This means Libra will have no major payment processor in the US. Keep in mind, just last week, PayPal withdrew. It therefore looks like the project has a lot more hurdles ahead, even beyond the criticisms it's faced so far.
These companies have been facing growing pressure from governments and regulators. So it's no surprise the Financial Times and Bloomberg both reported their plans to withdraw, but some have also now confirmed their exit plans via official statements to the media. See below:
“Visa has decided not to join the Libra Association at this time. . .We will continue to evaluate and our ultimate decision will be determined by a number of factors, including the Association’s ability to fully satisfy all requisite regulatory expectations.”
“We highly respect the vision of the Libra Association. . . However, eBay has made the decision to not move forward as a founding member. At this time, we are focused on rolling out eBay’s managed payments experience for our customers.”
“Stripe is supportive of projects that aim to make online commerce more accessible for people around the world. . . Libra has this potential. We will follow its progress closely and remain open to working with the Libra Association at a later stage.” Mastercard did not immediately respond to a request for comment."
We suspect their seemingly timed departures are because the first Libra Council meeting is set for 14 October in Geneva, so we'll likely hear more from them there. Libra Association policy chief Dante Disparte has already thanked them for their support and said the Libra team is focused on moving forward and "continuing to build a strong association" with the world’s leading enterprises and organisations.
“We look forward to the inaugural Libra Association Council meeting," he added.