Meta Exploring Non-Blockchain-Based Virtual Currency: Report

The company’s plans for NFT features on Facebook and Instagram also continue to advance.

AccessTimeIconApr 6, 2022 at 9:07 p.m. UTC
Updated Apr 7, 2022 at 12:23 a.m. UTC

Michael Bellusci is CoinDesk's crypto payments reporter.

Meta Platforms (FB), Facebook's parent company, has put together preliminary plans to release virtual coins, tokens and lending services on its apps, according to the Financial Times.

  • Meta Financial Technologies has been exploring the creation of a virtual currency for the metaverse, or “Zuck Bucks” as it’s being referred to by company employees, the FT reported, citing several people familiar with the matter.
  • The latest move comes not long after the company’s ill-fated move into cryptocurrency. What was left of Meta’s Libra/Diem stablecoin project was sold to Silvergate Bank earlier this year. The FT reported that Meta doesn’t envision a blockchain-based digital currency, but in-app tokens that are centrally controlled by the company.
  • The planning reportedly remains in early stages, and the project could be dropped or altered, or both, according to the FT. Meta is also said to be exploring a move into traditional financial services, such as small business lending.
  • Efforts at integrating non-fungible tokens (NFTs) into Facebook and Instagram are more developed, the report said. According to an internal memo, Instagram will soon support NFTs and there are plans for a mid-May pilot launch for posting NFTs on Facebook.
  • A Meta company spokesperson told CoinDesk it didn’t have new plans to share at this time.
  • “We continuously consider new product innovations for people, businesses and creators. As a company, we are focused on building for the metaverse and that includes what payments and financial services might look like,” the spokesperson said.

UPDATE (April 6, 22:03 UTC): Adds comment from Meta spokesperson.

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Michael Bellusci is CoinDesk's crypto payments reporter.

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Michael Bellusci is CoinDesk's crypto payments reporter.

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