In an attempt to get on regulators’ good books, Facebook’s stablecoin project, Libra, has been rebranded to Diem.
Libra Gets a New Name
According toReuters on Tuesday (Dec.1, 2020), the Libra project underwent a name change and would now be known as “Diem”. The rebranded name comes from Latin which means “day”.
Stuart Levey, the CEO of Diem Association formerly known as Libra Association, confirmed the name change. According to Levey, the rebranded name will focus on regulators’ and governments’ such as financial crime and sanction control.
Meanwhile, today’s rebranding is the third time the Association is making changes to the proposed stablecoin project. As previously reported in May, Libra’s digital wallet Calibra was changed to Novi Financial.
Also in April, the then Libra Association made changes to the original Libra whitepaper. Chief among the alterations was the introduction of multiple fiat-backed stablecoins, as opposed to a stablecoin pegged to a basket of fiat currencies.
The multiple changes made by the consortium stems from the need to appease global regulators. Speaking to Reuters regarding the latest development, Levey said:
“The original name was tied to an early iteration of the project that received a difficult reception from regulators. We have dramatically changed that proposition[…]We are not trying to cut all ties, by any stretch. It (the name change) is to signify that the association is operating autonomously and independently.”
Facebook, a major social media giant, caught the world’s attention back in June 2019, after unveiling the Libra whitepaper. Since the announcement of the proposed stablecoin project, regulators worldwide have scrutinized and criticized the effort.
Apart from regulatory pressure causing the Association to lose some of its earlier founders, the launch date for Libra, scheduled for the first half of 2020, was suspended.
Recently there were reports that the Libra stablecoin was launching in January 2021. However, as against the original plan, a dollar-backed stablecoin will launch first, following approval from Switzerland’s Financial Market Supervisory Authority (FINMA).
While the Diem Association chief did not deny or refute the alleged launch date, Levey said the project will take off after FINMA gives the greenlight.