Jack Ma Calls Bitcoin a Bubble, But Implements Blockchain In Ant
Ant Financial, formerly known as AliPay, has successfully developed and tested its blockchain technology-based cross-border money transfer system. The testing of the blockchain based remittance system was carried out between HongKong and the Philippines. While launching the service at Hong Kong, billionaire Jack Ma praised blockchain technology, but warned that Bitcoin could turn out to be a bubble.
In the transaction discussed above, AliPayHK was the transmitter of funds, while GCash, a Philippines based payment app, was the receiver. Notably, the Philippines banking sector, which developed a similar blockchain solution for payment remittance, has joined hands with IBM to conduct remittances to Japan.
Ant Financial claims that it is the first-time such a service, powered by blockchain, has been offered. Using the AlipayHK wallet, the service can be used by individuals for transferring funds between Hong Kong and Philippines. The 180,000 strong Filipinos constitute the largest community in Hong Kong. So, they require a reliable, secure and faster means of transferring funds to their loved ones. In 2016, more than $561 million was remitted by Filipinos using cross-border payment services. Currently, Hong Kong based remittance providers charge as much as HK$18 or $2.3 per transaction. The high charges encouraged Jack Ma to create a service that facilitates transfer of even one cent almost free of charge.
The remittance service uses Standard Chartered bank for settlement of transactions between Ant Financial and GCash. The payment solution allows the users of AlipayHK wallet to remit funds to users of mobile money, GCash, and wallet solutions operated by Filipino Globe Telecom, which has more than eight million clients in Philippines.
Regarding the service, Jack Ma said
“Using blockchain to achieve cross-border remittances is one of my most concerned projects in the past six months. Starting from Hong Kong, this service (AliPayHK) will be brought to the rest of the world in the future.”
As evident from the statement above, Jack Ma intends to extend the service to other locations in the future.
Regarding Bitcoin, Jack Ma said “Blockchain technology could change our world more than people imagine. Bitcoin however could be a bubble.”
It can be remembered that the US government blocked Ant Financial from acquiring MoneyGram, a payment service. Regarding the failed acquisition of MoneyGram Jack Ma commented
“At the time we wanted to [buy] MoneyGram and overhaul it to help people all over the world solve this issue. Due to reasons from the US our deal with MoneyGram did not succeed, so I said, let’s make one better [than MoneyGram]’ that uses the most advanced technology.”
Jack Ma also opined that the potential impact of blockchain could be much greater than what is being imagined now. He said “Blockchain should not be a tech to get rich overnight…There are still 1.7 billion people in the world who have no bank accounts, but most of them have mobile phones.”
Doug is an expert in the online casino industry and has written extensively about various matters pertaining to online gambling, cryptocurrencies, its culture, quirks and legalities. In his spare time, he enjoys reading biographies, watching documentaries and spending time with friends and family.