In July month, the Cardano Foundation released a 36 minutes video outlining their plans for the next five years. They outlined five areas of focus that will drive and guide their work: community, adoption, partnerships, governance, and legislative standards.
The goals described in the densely packed half-hour were ambitious and inspiring. One of the near-term objectives in the “partnerships” focus area is to onboard 50 banks by the end of 2022. This is huge! There are many unanswered questions; no details were given, and there are no updated documents on the foundation’s website yet. Some immediate questions that come to mind are: how many countries are being targeted? How many currencies? Does onboarding mean a full on and off ramp? (On/off ramps mean that one can go in with cash and come out with ADA, or vice versa).
For a small business owner, working with a local bank to receive payment in ADA and immediately receive a different crypto or local currency would make Cardano payments safer than current mobile app payment solutions. Fees on Cardano are predictable and stable, and are governed by the community rather than a corporate body. Working with a local bank means safe custody of your digital assets and time tested recourse should things go awry. And unlike current mobile payment solutions, you still get all the benefits of the blockchain: portability, visibility, speed, traceability, transparency, etc.
For individuals, this partnership might open the door to the future of digital money. Many of us are apprehensive about change, and appreciate the familiarity, security, and the cup of coffee at our local banking branch. Instead of learning about new financial tools purely online, identifying good opportunities while trying to avoid the hucksters, we may soon be able to work with the same trusted resources who helped us open a checking account and buy a house. For those with concerns about safely storing their crypto key, possibly sharing that responsibility with a bank might be a significant help.
With this proposed partnership, banks are being invited to ally themselves with the new world of transparency and individual sovereignty enabled by the blockchain. We are glad the Cardano Foundation is taking this on; it speaks to their raison d’etre of ensuring “the positive advancement of the Cardano protocol, while also contributing to the positive advancement of blockchain as a world-changing technology.”