Australian-based crypto currency Qoin initiated by Bartercard International is being adopted by 100s of merchants across the country in what can be classified as the fastest ever adoption spree of any crypto currency anywhere in the world. It’s taken over ten years for Bitcoin to see the levels of adoption we see now in mainstream. But for Qoin, in less than 3 months, the project has seen merchants flocking to its currency. From cafes to grocery stores to hotels and restaurants, you can now spend Qoin at several outlets in Australia.
Bitcoin and other leading crypto currencies are easily transactable in several parts of the world these days. All a customer needs to do is sign up with Crypto.com or Wirex, transfer your crypto assets to a spending wallet and you are ready to spend using a Visa or Mastercard issued by Crypto.com or Wirex. It’s not difficult anymore to do your grocery shopping with crypto assets.
Qoin makes blockchain more interesting when it comes to user adoption. The architects of Qoin have planned mass adoption as a starting point. The team behind Qoin has had 28 years of experience in Australia implementing systems for merchants to transact with each other using digital currencies. With blockchain tech available, it was just the next logical step for BCI. They’ve simplified the blockchain jargon for the everyday merchant and customer and the adoption has been as smooth as it can be. You even have a phone number to reach out for tech support and customer service. For most crypto users who are only familiar with getting help from friends on Telegram and Discord, this is an absolutely new concept. In a nut shell, Qoin offers a mix of the old school customer support with new fin tech infrastructure.
With all the positives stacked in its favour, the numbers are staggering just in three months. As one merchant puts it, “it’s almost like a viral currency” in Australia. Qoin makes transactions easier for SME businesses. It increases their liquidity and offers them an opportunity to convert their idle time and spare resources to digital assets. With an easily downloadable decentralised wallet from App Store or Google Play Store, business owners can sign up and get 1000 free Qoins into their wallets. The merchant has to set up a business listing to receive the credit of 1000 Qoins. They would also need an Australian Business Number to be part of the Qoin Merchant system. Signed up merchants will be allowed to gift Qoins to their favourite customers eventually. Details of this are not announced yet.
So how did Qoin reach this level of adoption in three months?
Qoin has an army of supporters on the ground signing up merchants to accept its native currency. Started in October 2019, Qoin has over 30 agents across Australia, introducing the idea of blockchain and crypto currencies to merchants. The features and positives are quite evident to merchants. The biggest plus factor is Qoin has taken regulatory approvals to roll out its currency and that’s reassuring for many small businesses.
What blockchain is Qoin on?
Qoin is built on a platform that was designed by JP Morgan Chase & Co, in partnership with Microsoft. Qoin runs on Quorum platform and Byzantine Fault Tolerant (BFT) consensus protocol. Based on Ethereum, Quorum is an open source blockchain platform that combines the “innovation of the Eth community with enhancements to support enterprise needs”.
Who is behind Qoin?
Qoin is operated by Bartercard International. Bartercard International has 21,000 business members and 40,000 cardholders in Australia, New Zealand, United Kingdom and Thailand. Bartercard’s “Trade Dollars” have been around for over 28 years and is pegged to the local currency. “Trade Dollars” are widely accepted in Australia among merchants although it largely stayed as a business to business operation. Its members have traded over $10 Billion on its trading platform. Although Bartercard and its operations were centralised, this is an attempt by BCI to decentralise community’s commercial activities. The most attractive feature of Qoin is that there are no sign up fees or annual fees like how some trade cards have. Blockchain has made transacting cheaper and more efficient for traders.
How is Qoin minted?
A fixed amount of Qoins equivalent to $7,500 per merchant is minted to “fund the sales initiative, attract new sign ups, incentivise and onboard new merchants and their customers, as well as maintain the technology and node network. This fixed amount will be reviewed annually by the Reserve to “consider inflationary and global economic changes”. “The maximum Qoins that can ever be minted by the Reserve is capped at 10 Billion in order to create $1.0 Trillion merchant ecosystem.” Qoin Reserve has issued 200 Million Qoins into its current supply for now.
Governance of Qoin.
As the governing entity, the Qoin Association, has been established in Australia to govern the Qoin blockchain, the Qoin Reserve and to coordinate the validator nodes. The Association is governed by the Qoin Association Council. The Association is necessary to initially establish guidance in terms of which specifications or protocols to adopt and develop.
Qoin blockchain will be governed by the Qoin Association which is based in Australia. As per the White Paper, Qoin Association will coordinate validator nodes to run a “Permissioned Distributed Blockchain”. It will also manage the Qoin Reserve. The Association will coordinate and appoint independent validator nodes to secure the blockchain. Similar to Facebook’s Libra that intend to have major corporates to run nodes to secure their blockchain, Qoin Association probably is eyeing to align with established corporate organisations to run its nodes. The whitepaper adds: “Unlike other blockchains that allow anybody, including bad actors, to operate validator nodes on their systems.”
Can Qoin be traded?
In its roadmap, Qoin Association is scheduled to launch an exchange in 2020. A merchant or trader will be able to purchase and sell Qoins on the exchange once the in-house exchange is launched. Currently, if anyone wishes to purchase Qoins, they will have to approach an agent or the Qoin office directly. Qoin has not had an ICO, but it has made Qoins available at a bonus for early adopters who wish to purchase them directly from the reserve. The current bonus will end on 29th February and new bonus will be rolled out from 1st March.
When is Qoin being rolled out to the rest of the world?
The Qoin Association Council has worked around a regulatory environment relating to cryptocurrencies, blockchains and exchanges in Australia. Qoin intends to roll out its wallets and the currency to other markets later this year. The Association wants to follow all regulatory protocols in establishing its ecosystem inside and outside Australia. in Australia, the council has engaged with ASIC, the regulator in Australia. The Australian Qoin Wallet is a regulated non cash payments product approved as Authorised Representative number 1279598 of Australian Financial Services Licence (AFSL) number 494176. Qoin promises to engage with regulators and law firms anywhere they establish its presence. Qoin is scheduled to be rolled out outside Australia from May 2020. Outside Australia, Qoin will first be launched in New Zealand, followed by the UK, Europe and North America in December 20.Qoin is priced at AUD 0.15.