The Libra Association has added three new members: Paradigm, Slow Ventures and Singapore’s Temasek Holdings

Temasek, one of Singapore’s two sovereign wealth funds, is among the latest companies to join the Libra Association, the consortium Facebook set up to create a global digital currency.

Paradigm and Slow Ventures were also named as new members of the Geneva-based association.

Both headquartered in San Francisco, Paradigm is a crypto investment firm and Slow Ventures is a venture capital business that has backed companies including Slack, Postmates, and Airtable.

“The addition of these three new members to the Libra Association shows our commitment to building a diverse group of organisations that will contribute to the governance, technological roadmap and launch readiness of for the Libra payment system,” said association vice chairman Dante Disparte.

Specifically, Temasek – one of Singapore’s sovereign wealth funds which boasts a portfolio valued at more than $300 billion – will play a unique role in the Association. Based in Singapore, the company “brings a differentiated position as an Asia-focused investor.”

Temasek’s headquarter

Temasek, along with JPMorgan and the Monetary Authority of Singapore, made headlines in November for a blockchain-based payments platform. Temasek has invested in companies including financial services companies, including Virtu, Standard Chartered, and MasterCard, as per its corporate website.

In October 2018, Reuters reported that Vertex Ventures, a fund backed by Temasek Holdings, Singapore’s other state investment fund, had invested an undisclosed amount into Binance to prepare for the Hong Kong-based cryptocurrency exchange’s expansion into the city-state. In November, Bloomberg reported Temasek’s investment in enterprise blockchain software firm and global banking consortium R3.

Libra, a high-profile project launched by social network giant Facebook, is tentatively scheduled to launch this year but has been battered by severe criticism from some of the world’s most influential financial authorities.

Image via The Block

Mastercard, Visa, eBay, Stripe, and Paypal who were some of the consortium’s initial members, all dropped out of the Libra payments network last year, following worldwide scrutiny by regulators about Facebook’s lacklustre approach to security and privacy for the project.

US lawmakers had expressed widespread mistrust of Facebook’s cryptocurrency plan, saying the company’s attempt at entering into financial services was troubling due to its “pattern of failing to keep consumer data private”, having branded it as a “serious concern”.

The consortium had initially hoped to onboard 100 members by the first half of 2020, its original target launch date. But those plans were derailed by fearful regulators whose criticism set off a hemorrhage of founding members and pushed back the launch. 

In response, Libra recently pared back its vision and has slowly begun to replenish its ranks. Last week, it added a CEO with a background in institutional banking and government finance.

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