Circle, the US-based issuer of the USD Coin (USDC), has announced plans to increase its presence in Asia, including a regional base in Singapore and investments in a Japanese yen stablecoin.
In a Bloomberg interview, Circle CEO Jeremy Allaire announced that the yen stablecoin move will be the first focus of the company’s new investment arm, called Circle Ventures. Mr Allaire added that the move is based on Circle’s belief that Asian markets are likely to see strong adoption of stablecoins in borrowing and lending markets.
Stablecoins are different from other cryptocurrencies as they are directly pegged to traditional assets like currencies or precious metal. Howewer, they have been the target of criticism by some regulators who fear that, without targeted regulation, they may become a threat to financial systems.
Circle is in discussions with Singapore’s financial authority in its attempts to have the USDC as one of the first global stablecoins to be licenced there. At the same time, it has voiced support for moves by the US administration to regulate stablecoin issuers as banks, with Mr Allaire stating that he broadly agrees with the regulatory premise “for something that’s potentially underpinning a really broad amount of payments and markets activity”.
"We can see how big crypto can become in Asia and a base in Singapore provides more regulatory credibility to a business like Circle’s. There are real and justifiable concerns about the risks posed by stablecoins, which are very different from other types of cryptos like our own D¥NS, and it is very welcoming to see key stakeholders like Allaire supporting moves to better regulate them."
Added Dynasty Global Investments AG’s founder and CEO, Eduardo Carvalho.