Canadian Bank Launching Fiat-Backed Digital Currency in Claimed World First

The bank says its VCAD stablecoin is the first digital currency issued by and backed by deposits with a North American bank.

Feb 24, 2021 at 2:04 p.m. UTC
Updated Sep 14, 2021 at 12:16 p.m. UTC

Canadian bank VersaBank is to launch a stablecoin called VCAD that it plans for use in commerce. 

  • In an announcement Wednesday, the bank claims the Canadian-dollar linked VCAD is the first digital currency issued by and backed by deposits with a North American bank. 
  • For the launch, VersaBank partnered with Stablecorp, a joint venture between crypto asset manager 3iQ and blockchain development firm Mavennet – both also Canada-based.
  • Currently, the digital currency is only being issued by VersaBank to financial intermediary partners in exchange for Canadian dollar deposits.
  • The partners will then offer VCAD directly to individuals and businesses for use in commerce. VCAD will be redeemable for Canadian dollars as required after that, the bank said.
  • "As North America's first bank-issued ‘stablecoin’ VCAD offers consumers and businesses the ability to adopt and leverage the benefits of digital currency and blockchain-based assets without the volatility of traditional currencies, alongside the security of a value-backed asset that the cryptocurrency world has long demanded," said David Taylor, president of VersaBank and its cybersecurity subsidiary, DRT Cyber.
  • The bank said it expects VCAD to be available to the general public in coming months.

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