Facebook announced its plan to rebrand Libra on Dec. 01, with the company asserting the new name would help the revamped project distance itself from the intense regulatory pushback faced by Libra when it was announced past year.
According to cointelegraph, Diem co-founder and prominent European fintech investor, Chris Adelsbach, said media outleft Sifted that while he was intimidated by the prospect of entering a legal battle with Facebook, he had received legal advice instructing him to protect his brand:
“It wouldn’t have taken that much effort for Facebook to find out if there’s another Diem in financial services […] They obviously took the view that ‘we can just crush them, we’re Facebook.’”
Diem CEO Geri Cupi stated:
“As a small startup, we are concerned that customer confusion resulting from Libra’s actions will significantly impact our growth.”
Diem executed its soft-launch in October and has since attracted half a million followers. The platform allows users to immediately sell possessions online and offers debit cards, with Sifted describing the app as “a digital pawnbroker of sorts.”
Facebook’s stablecoin ambitions seem to be set for a legal showdown with global regulators.
During a Dec. 07 conference between G7 ministers and central bank heads, Germany’s finance minister, Olaf Scholz, explained the project as “a wolf in sheep’s clothing.”
Scholz highlighted that Germany’s lawmakers “will not accept its entry into the market” without Facebook demonstrating it has addressed the government’s regulatory concerns. He also added:
“We must do everything possible to make sure the currency monopoly remains in the hands of states.”