• Circle, a USDC stablecoin issuer, establishes a regional hub in Singapore and launches Circle Ventures

  • Circle, the digital payment company that runs the USD Coin (USDC) stablecoin, announced this week that it is establishing a regional hub in Singapore and is looking for partners for its stablecoin Lighthouse Project.

    Circle, based in the United States, says its move to Singapore is part of its global expansion plans, and the company plans to obtain the necessary Singapore licenses and registrations, as well as hire a regional leadership team based in the country.

    “You cannot build an always-on, global internet finance business without considering Singapore as a hub,” Circle’s chief strategy officer and global head of policy Dante Disparte said in a statement. “The Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) has been an exceptional regulatory partner as we sought to broaden our business horizons and invest in the Singaporean market.”

    The company is also looking for local business partners to join its Lighthouse Project, which will test stablecoin innovations in the Singapore market while the MAS — the country’s central bank — observes and guides project design.

    In a speech at the Singapore FinTech Festival 2021, MAS managing director Ravi Menon stated that while stablecoins are gaining acceptance outside of the crypto ecosystem, they may pose financial stability risks. He stated that the MAS was deeply considering the issues surrounding stablecoins and would take a flexible regulatory approach to encourage experimentation and allow innovation to flourish while managing risks.

    Circle Ventures, a new initiative to invest in early stage blockchain projects and companies, was announced as part of a series of announcements made at the Singapore FinTech Festival this week.

    According to CoinGecko data, USDC is currently the second-largest stablecoin, with a market value of more than US$34.5 billion. Circle has also announced plans to become a full-reserve national digital currency bank in the United States, as regulatory scrutiny of stablecoins grows around the world.

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