Bucharest (Reuters) – Romanian blockchain start-up Elrond is preparing for its new global payments app to support Bitcoin this month as it looks to compete with more established rivals PayPal or Revolut, its CEO said as it went on the growing interest in cryptocurrencies.
FILE PHOTO: This April 24, 2020 illustration shows a representation of the virtual currency Bitcoin on a motherboard. REUTERS / Dado Ruvic / Illustration
Led by a sharp surge in Bitcoin, digital asset markets surged to over $ 1 trillion in early 2021 as large money managers and corporations take the sector seriously.
“This is turning what once looked like a Mexican stalemate, where potential investors waited on the sidelines, into an arms race,” Elrond founder Beniamin Mincu told Reuters.
Elrond has developed a new blockchain technology that can process more than 15,000 transactions per second, compared to 7 and 14 transactions per second, respectively, for Bitcoin and Ethereum, the world’s two leading cryptocurrencies.
Its Maiar digital wallet and global payments app, which launched on January 31, raised Elrond’s market valuation to currently $ 2.37 billion, according to CoinMarketCap, a price tracker, and is considered simple smartphone access on blockchain technology for the general public.
While the app currently supports Elrond’s native cryptocurrency eGold (eGLD) as well as Binance and Ethereum, Mincu said it will support Bitcoin in two to four weeks.
The company plans to roll out a card designed to bridge cryptocurrencies and the traditional economy in three to six months.
Over time, the app could process title deeds as well as other non-fungible assets. Elrond plans to launch a new round of funding in 6-12 months to increase user base, Mincu said.
“Although it started in the native digital space, it will expand,” said Mincu.
“Maiar is the easiest app for people to interact with blockchain technology and can pave the way to building the infrastructure for a new transparent financial system with high bandwidth and very low latency.”
(This story corrects the name of Elrond’s currency in paragraph 6)
Reporting from Luiza Ilie; Adaptation by Jason Neely