BitMinutes, a blockchain technology company and inventor of pre-paid minute tokenization, has created a country-specific BitMinute in Guatemala.
BitMinutes Inc. (BitMinutes), a financial services technology company leveraging blockchain and pre-paid minutes tokenization to bring financial inclusion to the global consumer in less developed communities, announced today a country-specific BitMinute (BMT) in Guatemala. The Guatemala-BMT (BGTQ) will be pegged in value one-to-one to the Guatemala Quetzal (GTQ) to encourage easy understanding and widespread use by Guatemalans.
Approximately $10 billion is remitted from the U.S. to Guatemala each year, according to the World Bank, so there is a lot of potential to convert that flow of money into BGTQ transactions.
Beginning in April, BitMinutes will enable US residents, initially in four states, to purchase BGTQs and transfer them, at no cost, to friends and family in Guatemala. BGTQs are mobile-enabled, and can be sent freely around Guatemala to other recipients using mobile-phone-based eWallets (mobile wallets). BGTQ users will use them to top-up their pre-paid phones, or go to participating agents to convert BGTQs into Quetzals.
“BGTQs are pre-paid mobile phone minutes backing a digital stable coin token for Guatemala’s 18 million residents,” said BitMinutes CEO Tom Meredith. “Fixing the value of one BGTQ to one Quetzal allows immediate understanding and acceptance of the BGTQ digital token, unlike other digital tokens, which are volatile and have little use for the average consumer. Everyone in Guatemala will be able to use BGTQs on their phones. If a phone is lost, the BGTQs will be secure in the Amazon cloud maintained by BitMinutes. They will be easily used and can never be lost.
“This is true ‘free money transfer.’ There is no transaction fee to buy BGTQs, transfer them to Guatemala, send them within Guatemala and/or convert them to cash at participating agent locations.”
Meredith notes that approximately half the Guatemalan population is unbanked. They don’t own any financial product, yet will approach financial institutions to make simple transactions, such as paying utility bills or receiving remittances, according to The Dialogue.
“The less expensive we can make it for unbanked Guatemalans to receive financial help from friends and family in the United States, the more money they will have to improve their life, perhaps even start a business,” said Meredith. “You can’t get any less expensive than free.”
Initially, U. S. residents of Georgia, New York, Illinois and New Jersey will be able to visit www.BitMinutes.com or www.P2PCash.com online. It is expected that BitMinutes will be able to provide this service nationally by mid-year 2020, according to Meredith.
Meredith added that the Guatemala division of the joint venture, called BitMinutes Guatemala, plans to introduce the ability to make micro loans and provide a payments platform in Guatemala, which is designed to mirror the success that M-Pesa has had in Kenya.