Tether and Ethfinex are about to launch the Tether ERC20 token on the Ethereum blockchain. Tether ERC20 will allow for tokenized USD to be exchanged on the Ethereum network, enabling interoperability with Ethereum-based protocols and decentralized apps (DApps) and allowing users to transact with conventional currencies across the Ethereum network.
Launched in 2014, Tether provides a blockchain platform built on the Omni Protocol that allows traditional currencies to be tokenized, enabling users to transact and trade with digital tokens that represent conventional currencies. Tether Platform currencies are 100% backed by actual fiat currency assets in the company’s reserve account.
Commenting on the upcoming launch of Tether ERC20, scheduled for Monday, September 18, Craig Sellar, co-founder of Tether, said that the new development will reduce the current interbank delays often involved in exchange withdrawal and allow users access to tokenized USD, “a first for the industry.”
Tether ERC20 was developed in partnership with Ethfinex, a brand of iFinex, the company that owns and operates cryptocurrency trading platform Bitfinex.
Ethfinex was announced in August and is set to function as a decentralized exchange for tokens under the ERC20 standard and a discussion platform for the Ethereum community. Ethfinex said it will integrate Tether ERC20 to its exchange as a mechanism for funding and fiat trading.
“The number of tokens and assets being tokenized on top of the Ethereum platform is growing rapidly, with many proving disruptive to traditional business models,” said Will Harborne, project lead of Ethfinex. “By enabling all ERC20 compatible applications and protocols to integrate tokenized USD, we expect to see enhanced efficiency and further stability on the Ethereum network.”
“We see Tether as a crucial piece of public infrastructure for the Ethereum community and associated DApps. We are extremely excited about the possibilities this will enable for many other projects in the Ethereum ecosystem.”
ERC20 is a standard that governs how new cryptographic tokens can be launched on top of the Ethereum blockchain, establishing a common set of rules that developers must follow. The standard was officially formalized this week.
TokenCard, a smart contract-powered debit card, will integrate with Tether as a compatible application enabling users to use Tether USD (USDT) for everyday transactions, the company said. Upon launch of its card, TokenCard will accept the Tether ERC20.
TokenCard co-founder Mel Gelderman said the launch of Tether fiat tokens on the Ethereum network was a big step towards greater consumer adoption of cryptocurrencies.
“This blurs the boundaries of what is considered a blockchain asset versus a ‘regular’ asset and will enable people to own the fiat currencies most familiar to them but in a tradeable digital form. This will make it much easier for the majority to use Ethereum powered platforms, like TokenCard,” Gelderman said.