Facebook is quietly ramping up their crypto efforts.
Citing unnamed sources, Cheddar first reported that Facebook had engaged multiple employees from Chainspace, a blockchain firm founded by University College London researchers. Facebook’s move to hire, but not officially acquire the company is often referred to as an “acquire” in Silicon Valley and it comes after Facebook executive and former PayPal President David Marcus was hired to lead their blockchain group earlier last year.
A Facebook spokesperson confirmed to Cheddar that they had hired employees from Chainspace but that they aren’t acquiring any of Chainspace’s technology. The source referenced an earlier statement from the company about their blockchain efforts:
“Like many other companies, Facebook is exploring ways to leverage the power of blockchain technology. This new small team is exploring many different applications. We don’t have anything further to share.”
According to Chainspace’s white paper, the team was building a “distributed ledger platform for high-integrity and transparent processing of transactions within a decentralized system.”
Like many popular crypto projects, Chainspace was focusing on increasing the speed of payment transactions. They were also reportedly exploring how blockchain technology can be used in different areas, like polling.
However, a new banner at the top of the website announced that the company is moving in a different direction. It reads:
“We’re excited to announce that the team is moving on to something new. Chainspace code and documentation will still be open source, and all previously published academic work remains available.”
It’s unclear how exactly Facebook will utilize the former Chainspace employees but reports emerged late last year that Facebook was working on creating a fiat-backed stable coin to be integrated into messaging platform WhatsApp. As for now, the social media giant has yet to reveal the full scope of their crypto involvement.