Just about a year ago terms like “blockchain,” “Bitcoin” and “cryptocurrency” would have at best garnered a raised eyebrow signifying wariness or plain ignorance. Today, however, the situation has changed, if not drastically. We often get dragged, happily, into discussions on things like the “Next Big ICO,” mining (not metal ore, of course!) and smart contracts. And yet only a few million people around the world truly know about what blockchain technology is and how it is poised to revolutionize the financial markets and introduce new financial services around the globe. This is a mere handful as compared to the 7.5 billion people who currently live on this planet.
Cryptocurrencies (Bitcoin, anyone?) are based on blockchain technology. While we won’t go into details of what this technology is, we must emphasize that cryptocurrencies are its finest offspring. If there was anything truly democratic in this world, cryptocurrencies are those. Consider this – nobody manufactures them, nobody controls them and yet they hold the power to perform financial transactions in an open and safe environment.
Take your time to mull over this exciting piece of information and digest it to create a vision of a world with true financial freedom and new financial services. In the meantime, allow us to hold your hand to show you a possibility that is both exhilarating and life-altering.
But first, the dark clouds!
According to the Global Findex Database, more than 2 billion adults remain without a bank account. The majority of this population resides in the developing and grossly underdeveloped regions of the world. That is understandable. But it is not just individuals. Many small businesses and micro-enterprises do not have access to safe and secure banking. These people and businesses often reach out to spurious middlemen and unscrupulous lenders who exploit them for their own advantage. The result – financial losses to the business and loss of confidence in the possibilities of growth and progress.
Banks and other financial institutions find such complex markets risky and hesitate to participate, whereas these are the very regions that have the highest potential for growth if given financial inclusion and participation in the mainstream banking system.
The silver lining!
Blockchain technology, as we mentioned earlier, has the ability to truly bring about unprecedented levels of financial inclusion in a never-before-seen democratic fashion. It can create a safe, secure and highly flexible ecosystem. It can effectively bring many stakeholders under a common umbrella to provide financial inclusion and monetary stability for the millions of unbanked and underserved.
Using cryptocurrencies to power the current financial services, a system can be developed to integrate cryptocurrencies into the lives of the people around the world. The result is an operation that is cheaper, safer and decentralized.
The Hoopla about LaLa!
LaLa World aims at creating a unique financial services ecosystem that will integrate the power of blockchain technology and cryptocurrencies into the existing financial framework. This marriage of old world and new world systems is the key to providing the advantages of cryptocurrencies using the massive reach and network of the current financial services.
LaLa World has created an Ethereum-based wallet that offers facilities like peer-to-peer transfer of local and global remittance, local and international bill pay and a globally acceptable LaLa Card. The most exciting feature of this system is its facility to promote peer-to-peer lending and borrowing via EMIs. This will greatly impact small and micro businesses which do not have the wherewithal to apply for loans from banks and non-banking financial institutions. This can be a major boost for entrepreneurial projects by passionate and talented individuals wanting to bring about a positive change within their communities.
Lala World is set to change the game as far as usability and flexibility is concerned. Imagine using your crypto-coins via your smartphone, virtual card or a physical card. The LaLa Wallet has an inbuilt exchange mechanism that can be used to convert one “coin” into another.
Surprising as it may seem, 64 million adults (that’s 12 % of adults in the world) in sub-Saharan Africa have mobile money accounts. That is compared to just 2% of the adult global population in the world who has such an account. While we may harp on the speed at which the developed world has caught on to the “digital wave,” these numbers tell a different story. This means that people in all parts of the world – developed, underdeveloped or developing – are ready to join the digital banking bandwagon. They only need to be given the opportunity.
The World Bank and other such umbrella organizations have always aimed to provide financial inclusion as a means to end poverty in this world. A democratic, safe, secure and flexible financial infrastructure like LaLa World will play an integral role in the achievement of these lofty goals.