KBC, one of the largest global insurance companies and banks in Belgium, has announced plans to launch its own digital currency, which has led to a slight change in its approach to digital assets.
The digital currency will be “KBC Coin”, the bank’s original cryptocurrency and its function as a kind of bonus that would allow the bank to develop strategies for interacting with customers, promoting the platform, and forcing users to adopt its services.
KBC coin almost ready:
The bank shared this announcement during the first months offer of digital assistant “Kate” embedded in the banking app.
At the moment, the digital currency “KBC Coin” is not available to the public, but it is already in the testing phase via a private environment.
The bank did not disclose further details regarding the road map for the project.
In addition to the regulatory framework and economic characteristics of the project, KBC focuses on the technical and privacy issues of its cryptocurrency.
According to the local newspaper De Morgen , CEO of the bank, “Johan Thijs,” stated :
We want to protect the identity of our customers
We will give users a platform that gives them complete control over their data.
KBC confirmed that its digital currency has nothing to do with Bitcoin or any other cryptocurrency in the market.
In addition, the bank indicated that “KBC Coin” will only operate within the bank’s infrastructure, so it will not be subject to the massive price fluctuations that characterize cryptocurrencaies.
The data that Mr. Thijs shared gives a rough idea of how the new digital currency would work if it were launched, as he stated about the new digital currency by saying:
This currency can initially be earned by loyal clients and spent on specific services … The currency will be in a closed system.
It is a closed loop currency.
Therefore, it is not a currency like the Euro that allows you to roam around the world and make payments everywhere … It is a digital currency that we use in a specific environment, for example the environment of customers.
It’s like cryptocurrency … but it’s not a cryptocurrency:
This distinction is vital to the bank as it has maintained a cautious stance on cryptocurrencies for years.
Even in 2015, long before the cryptocurrency boom brought Bitcoin and ICO into the spotlight, KBC was already warning its customers about the risks associated with trading bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies.
In a document still available in the bank’s archives, it can be seen that the bank views Bitcoin as a risky asset in technical, financial and social terms.
Some of the risks the bank mentioned at the time were, Bitcoin is:
- An obscure and complicated investment.
- There is no core or backed value.
- Unexpected liquidity.
- There is no guarantee of repayment.
- Multiple technology risks (including data loss and piracy).
- Subject to fraud and illegal transactions
To avoid preconceptions about the new digital currency that the bank intends to launch, “KBC” cited the digital currencies of the central bank, a type of digital currency supported by the bank and operating as paper money, as close examples of the nature of the currency “KBC Coin”.
Digital central bank currencies want to establish themselves as a next step in the development of money by becoming banks’ alternative to cryptocurrencies, so will the people adopt them and become the dominant one?