Circle Addresses Monetization Question, Teases Future Products

Circle CTO Sean Neville addresses community questions about Circle and its long-term market objectives.

May 21, 2014 at 6:30 p.m. UTC
Updated Sep 14, 2021 at 2:07 p.m. UTC

Roughly one week after Circle unveiled its first product, co-founder and Chief Technology Officer Sean Neville has addressed some lingering questions about the company and its market goals.

In a post on popular blogging platform Medium, Neville discussed a host of topics, including how the company will plan to monetize its service, how it will deal with bitcoin's price volatility and how it aims to insure customer funds from security threats.

Overall, Neville framed the post as a way for the company to respond to the many "reasonable questions" Circle had received from the community after its highly-publicized debut.

Perhaps most notably, however, Neville addressed how the company aims to offer instant access to bitcoin banking and storage free of charge, revealing that Circle intends to develop a line of high-level, revenue-generating products to support its drive for more mainstream consumers, adding:

"We’re interested in the long-term value of digital money, not optimizing for minor short-term profit."

The news follows the official debut of Circle's first product,, at the Bitcoin2014 conference in Amsterdam.

Not a trading platform

Neville went on to talk about Circle's fiat-to-bitcoin conversion rate, noting that it may fluctuate to be higher or lower than other exchange services, but that the company does not view this as a margin for producing revenue.

The CTO also compared Circle's revenue strategy to larger issues relating to Internet monetization, saying:

"The Internet wants movement of information on its rails to be free, or very close to free, and revenue-generating value to be built on top of those basic democratized rails."

Further, Neville suggested that those who deposit – buy – bitcoin via its service via credit card will need to pay the associated interchange fees.

Not self-insured

In response to questions about how it Circle insuring customer deposits against security threats, Neville provided a cursory overview of the business relationships that support this initiative:

"We worked hard to secure an initial policy that covers 100% of assets under management – that includes all customer balances as well as Circle reserves – through underwriters with excellent S&P ratings."

He went on to speculate that more companies in the bitcoin ecosystem will adopt insurance policies as a means to attract more consumers.

Not done yet

While Neville did not provide many details, he also hinted that Circle will seek to further define its product, noting that "not all intended features are yet present".

In particular, he suggested the company may be considering novel ways to ensure Circle customers aren't exposed to bitcoin's price volatility, stating:

"We have a specific approach in mind for addressing volatility and will debut that when it’s more mature."

He concluded by asking the community for its continued patience as it develops its products, adding: "We are quite seriously trying to change the world, and we are prepared for that to take time".

Image via Circle

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