Of the wide spectrum of available cryptocurrencies and digital tokens, one of those that moved the most over the last 24 hours was the Stellar Lumen (XLM). For those reading that are already familiar with this space, there is a good chance that the Lumen will already be on-radar.
For anybody just getting started in cryptocurrency trading, however, let’s kick things off with a quick introduction to the token and the company behind it.
Stellar is the name of the company and it built and now maintains a public ledger blockchain type network that functions in much the same way as does that of bitcoin. What we mean by this is that it is primarily designed as a bridge mechanism for value transfer. Don’t get this confused with something like Ethereum, which is primarily designed as a platform on top of which applications can be built using smart contracts.
In line with this, while Ethereum isn’t directly in competition with something like bitcoin, Stellar (and, by proxy, Lumen) is. As a quick side note, the team that is behind Stellar was born out of the team that originally developed Ripple, which is a similar sort of setup in the sense that it designed to facilitate value transfer.
So if this one is competing with both bitcoin and Ripple, how does it have any chance of gaining traction?
Well, because it’s specifically designed to be incredibly fast and incredibly cheap, unlike bitcoin, and to target developing economies that currently have very little access to financial services. Whereas Ripple is targeting inter-bank transfer, Stellar is targeting the transfer of cash between individuals cross-border and between companies and individuals in nations for which the financial infrastructure is weak.
This target market translated to some real upside action earlier this year when technology behemoth IBM (NYSE:IBM) used the Stellar protocol to facilitate cross-border payments between British pounds and Fijian dollars. As things stand, the platform is also set up to facilitate payments between seven fiat currencies in the South Pacific – including the Australian dollar, the New Zealand dollar and the Tonga pa’anga.
The importance of this was that it demonstrated a real world use case of interaction between a private and a public blockchain. Lumen, the coin that underpinned the payment event, was just used as a bridge currency in the sense that it never actually crossed borders itself and this has dramatic ramifications for future payments of this type longer term.
Ever since this happened, sentiment surrounding Lumen has been pretty strong and market perception has been that the coin is set for longer-term reevaluation – assuming the IBM adoption can translate to alternative, but similar, real-world applications of the technology over the coming years.
And, for us, that is a real possibility.
We have seen Ripple establish key partnerships with a large number of leading financial institutions globally and, given the similarities (and, by proxy, benefits) shared between Ripple and Lumen, there is no real reason why the latter cannot do with developing nation cross-border payments what the former is doing with inter-institutional payments in the finance world.
The marketing team, as well as the company’s founders, have been making numerous appearances at various events over the last few days, with one (a so-called Future of Blockchain Meetup) set for tomorrow and this has served to compound the action of late and push XLM higher.
As compared to the US dollar, XML currently trades for a 45% premium to its price this time yesterday, moving across the major exchanges for little over $0.08 a piece.
We expect this one to continue running into the end of the week as management continues to push the protocol at major events.
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Image courtesy of Stellar
Disclaimer: This article should not be taken as, and is not intended to provide, investment advice. Please conduct your own thorough research before investing in any cryptocurrency.