USDC Added to Hedera Hashgraph as Enterprise-Minded Network Eyes DeFi

It becomes the stablecoin’s sixth network as a key part of a $2.5 billion HBAR initiative.

Oct 18, 2021 at 10:00 a.m. UTC
Updated Oct 18, 2021 at 2:49 p.m. UTC

Ian Allison is an award-winning senior reporter at CoinDesk. He holds ETH.

USDC, the dollar-backed stablecoin used to grease the wheels of cryptocurrency trading, has made its way into the Hedera Hashgraph ecosystem.

Hashgraph, an alternative to blockchains that uses directed acyclic graphs to time-sequence transactions without bundling them into blocks, sees the introduction of USDC opening the door to large-scale development around areas like decentralized finance (DeFi).

“We believe USDC is a key building block for DeFi and payments use cases in the crypto economy,” said HBAR Foundation CEO Shayne Higdon. “Now anyone can transact value with USDC on Hedera, and they do so with some significant benefits over other chains such as high performance, low latency and sustainable energy efficiency.”

A growing crop of projects on Hedera will receive a shot in the arm from the addition of USDC, Higdon said in an interview with CoinDesk, namechecking Third Act, a non-fungible token (NFT) marketplace for the theater community; the MyHbarWallet, with payments in mind; and Hex Trust, the institution-focused cryptocurrency custodian.

The newly formed HBAR Foundation has set aside $2.5 billion worth of Hedera’s native currency to dole out as ecosystem grants, a significant portion of which will be dedicated to DeFi development and onboarding, according to a press release.

Enterprise attraction

As well as breaking new ground in DeFi, the introduction of USDC will also vitalize the enterprise players that run nodes on Hashgraph – Hedera’s Governing Council includes Google, IBM, Boeing and Deutsche Telekom, to name a few. Higdon said it could also bolster use cases like securitization and ledger-based supply-chain platforms.

USDC creator Circle knows that integrating its $30 billion-in-circulation digital dollar into blockchains like Solana and Algorand has coincided with accelerated growth of DeFi and NFT platforms on these platforms.

That said, the Circle team, being somewhat accustomed to DeFi and the endless promise of an NFT-fueled metaverse, was attracted by Hedera’s enterprise achievements and the prospect of USDC being used in permissioned settings.

“We decided to prioritize Hedera Hashgraph earlier this year because we felt it has the power for more enterprise use of USDC, and interesting features for the build-out of more enterprise applications,” Circle VP of Product Joao Reginatto said in an interview.

Hedera becomes the sixth blockchain on which Circle supports USDC. In July, Tron joined Ethereum, Algorand, Stellar and Solana shortly after Circle announced plans to expand USDC to roughly 10 more networks.

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Ian Allison is an award-winning senior reporter at CoinDesk. He holds ETH.

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Ian Allison is an award-winning senior reporter at CoinDesk. He holds ETH.

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