Tether Enters Latin America With Mexican Peso-Pegged Stablecoin
The country’s multibillion-dollar remittances business and difficulties in transferring money create a “unique opportunity," the company said.
Tether on Thursday added to its roster of stablecoins, launching its MXNT token pegged to Mexico’s peso.
The token will initially be supported in the Ethereum, Tron and Polyong blockchains, the company said. MXNT is Tether’s first foray into Latin America and joins the company’s other pegged coins — USDT (U.S. dollar), EURT (euro) and CNHT (China’s yuan).
Mexico is “a prime location for the next Latin American crypto hub,” said Tether, noting a report from Triple A stating that 40% of Mexican companies are interested in adopting blockchain and crypto in some way.
“We have seen a rise in cryptocurrency usage in Latin America over the last year that has made it apparent that we need to expand our offerings,” said Tether Chief Technology Officer Paolo Ardoino. The company bills this effort as a “testing ground” in Latin America that it expects will “pave the way” for more fiat-pegged tokens in the region.
Tether also took note of the “unique opportunity” in Mexico thanks to the multibillion-dollar flow of remittances into that country, and the difficulties involved with internal money transfers.
In 2021 Mexico was the third-largest recipient of remittances worldwide after China and India, with nationals living abroad having sent $51.6 billion to the country, according to the Mexican central bank.
Tether isn’t the first to notice the Mexican remittance phenomenon, which previously caught the attention of large crypto players including Coinbase, Bitso and Circle. Earlier this year, Coinbase (COIN) launched a cash-out service to convert local pesos to crypto at more than 37,000 physical retail outlets and convenience stores across the country.
In November, Latin American crypto exchange Bitso partnered with Circle to launch an international wire transfer product that allows small business and freelancers to change their dollars to stablecoins, send them to Mexico and then be collected in pesos. One month later, in partnership with Tribal, Bitso also launched a cross-border B2B payment option enabling small and midsized enterprises the conversion of Mexican pesos to Stellar USDC.
The leader in news and information on cryptocurrency, digital assets and the future of money, CoinDesk is a media outlet that strives for the highest journalistic standards and abides by a strict set of editorial policies. CoinDesk is an independent operating subsidiary of Digital Currency Group, which invests in cryptocurrencies and blockchain startups. As part of their compensation, certain CoinDesk employees, including editorial employees, may receive exposure to DCG equity in the form of stock appreciation rights, which vest over a multi-year period. CoinDesk journalists are not allowed to purchase stock outright in DCG.
Learn more about Consensus 2023, CoinDesk’s longest-running and most influential event that brings together all sides of crypto, blockchain and Web3. Head to consensus.coindesk.com to register and buy your pass now.