In January 2018, Facebook’s CEO Mark Zuckerberg announced that the company would be exploring cryptocurrencies and ‘how to best use them in our services’, and set up a group of experts to ‘explore how to best leverage blockchain across Facebook’.
In June 2019, the company announced the official launch of Libra, its new cryptocurrency. The technical documentation, white paper, and testnet for developers described Libra as a global currency and financial infrastructure dedicated to ‘creating a more inclusive financial system’. Libra’s plans indicate that the cryptocurrency will be available to users in July 2020. However, both David Marcus (Co-creator and Head of Libra, Vice President of Messaging Products at Facebook, CEO of Calibra, and former president of PayPal) and Zuckerberg voiced their clear decision not to rush Libra deployment until regulatory issues are addressed by the main players in the field. In an interview in late September 2019, Zuckerberg said, ‘Obviously we want to move forward at some point soon [and] not have this take many years to roll out, but right now I’m really focused on making sure that we do this well. That’s a very different approach than what we might have taken five years ago’.