Are Digital Wallets coming to Montserrat?

TMR/GEM

BRADES, MONTSERRAT – Today, practically “nearly everyone” has a smart phone. Many also carry a wallet or purse, in which he/she keeps cash for everyday transactions. So, what if the two could be merged so that our smart phones become digital wallets?

Now, because of the tremendous computing power of everyday mobile digital devices and because of widespread wireless telecommunication networks, it is possible to create a secure, trustworthy distributed chain of all transactions in a network, a distributed database or electronic accounting ledger that in effect cannot be corrupted at any one “node.” This is done through the use of so-called blockchain technology.[1]  So, as this technology is obviously already joining the Internet and cell phone networks in being central to our daily life and business dealings, we need to become familiar with it. For, “blockchain” is far too important to become yet another mysterious, confusing, poorly understood high tech buzzword.

Governor, Timothy Antoine, the East Caribbean Central Bank (ECCB) has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with BITT, a Barbados-based financial technology company backed in part by Internet retailer Overstock dot com.[2] BITT offers “digital asset exchange, remittance channel and merchant processing gateway”[3] services; which aims to create “a digital financial ecosystem throughout the Caribbean.”

Similarly, the Government of Montserrat has also entered into an MoU with BITT. The Barbados Central Bank is also exploring possibilities, through setting up a “regulatory sandbox” for BITT.

All of this lends significant credibility to BITT and its digital wallet, merchant support and other “digital financial ecosystem” platforms.

That is how, on Tuesday, October 30, 2018, CEO Mr Rawdon Adams and other representatives of BITT (with backgrounds in banking, Economics and technology) held a public townhall meeting at the Montserrat Cultural Centre.  During the meeting, they made presentations on digital wallet technology, demonstrated how smart phone based digital wallet apps work, and fielded various questions from the audience. Key points that the BITT representatives made include:

  • The business opportunity to offer digital financial ecosystem services arises as Banks and similar major players are heavily centralised, are strongly regulated, have major overheads and don’t tend to be highly agile with new technologies.
  • For the consumer, the mMoney product uses an App similar to WhatsApp and to top-up for smart phones.Top-up would be done through merchants on the system, and payments are readily made using the QR code, which looks like a square barcode.
  • And more…

It therefore seems that through its partnership with ECCB and governments of member states of the East Caribbean Currency Union (ECCU), BITT will be providing digital wallet and other blockchain technology based digital financial ecosystem services across our region. This development is potentially revolutionary for our financial system and economy.

Accordingly, TMR will keep in touch with this developing story and accommodate further information as required by interested parties

[1]     See: https://blockgeeks.com/guides/what-is-blockchain-technology/

[2]     See: https://www.overstock.com/

[3]     See: http://www.nationnews.com/nationnews/news/74017/bit-bitt

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TMR/GEM

BRADES, MONTSERRAT – Today, practically “nearly everyone” has a smart phone. Many also carry a wallet or purse, in which he/she keeps cash for everyday transactions. So, what if the two could be merged so that our smart phones become digital wallets?

Now, because of the tremendous computing power of everyday mobile digital devices and because of widespread wireless telecommunication networks, it is possible to create a secure, trustworthy distributed chain of all transactions in a network, a distributed database or electronic accounting ledger that in effect cannot be corrupted at any one “node.” This is done through the use of so-called blockchain technology.[1]  So, as this technology is obviously already joining the Internet and cell phone networks in being central to our daily life and business dealings, we need to become familiar with it. For, “blockchain” is far too important to become yet another mysterious, confusing, poorly understood high tech buzzword.

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Governor, Timothy Antoine, the East Caribbean Central Bank (ECCB) has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with BITT, a Barbados-based financial technology company backed in part by Internet retailer Overstock dot com.[2] BITT offers “digital asset exchange, remittance channel and merchant processing gateway”[3] services; which aims to create “a digital financial ecosystem throughout the Caribbean.”

Similarly, the Government of Montserrat has also entered into an MoU with BITT. The Barbados Central Bank is also exploring possibilities, through setting up a “regulatory sandbox” for BITT.

All of this lends significant credibility to BITT and its digital wallet, merchant support and other “digital financial ecosystem” platforms.

That is how, on Tuesday, October 30, 2018, CEO Mr Rawdon Adams and other representatives of BITT (with backgrounds in banking, Economics and technology) held a public townhall meeting at the Montserrat Cultural Centre.  During the meeting, they made presentations on digital wallet technology, demonstrated how smart phone based digital wallet apps work, and fielded various questions from the audience. Key points that the BITT representatives made include:

It therefore seems that through its partnership with ECCB and governments of member states of the East Caribbean Currency Union (ECCU), BITT will be providing digital wallet and other blockchain technology based digital financial ecosystem services across our region. This development is potentially revolutionary for our financial system and economy.

Accordingly, TMR will keep in touch with this developing story and accommodate further information as required by interested parties

[1]     See: https://blockgeeks.com/guides/what-is-blockchain-technology/

[2]     See: https://www.overstock.com/

[3]     See: http://www.nationnews.com/nationnews/news/74017/bit-bitt