Introducing Telcoin

The Case for Telcoin

  • Trust. Cryptocurrencies suffer a major trust issue. The instantaneous nature of transactions is a double-edged sword, and Bitcoin has been featured in numerous stories recently of hackers stealing cryptocurrency. We are not trying to replace Bitcoin. In fact, we expect to drive greater adoption of Bitcoin, as many early Telcoin users will likely use it to buy Bitcoin. We are offering to leverage telecoms’ existing trust level with customers to provide an easy bridge between mobile money and cryptocurrency. Default security for subscribers who convert mobile money to Telcoin will involve a multi-signature wallet, preventing large Telcoin movements without two of the three wallet keys. Telcoin will also work with the telecoms to utilize all available best practice security measures in order to protect subscribers. Furthermore, by focusing on compliance efforts with telecoms, we don’t expect Telcoin to attract criminal elements. We intend to diligently maintain a clean image for Telcoin as a brand that can be trusted.
  • Reach. Five billion people have mobile phones. Reaching potential users can be difficult and costly for any new business. Telcoin will create a symbiotic relationship with telecoms in order to capitalize on their vast reach. By incentivizing mobile operators to partner with us, we will gain immediate access to their existing subscriber base. We also feel that Telcoin will drive further adoption of mobile money by adding practical use cases. Expanding mobile money adoption is a top priority of telecom CEOs in the developing world, as it has proven to generate a higher return on investment (ROI) compared to allocations for network infrastructure. Telecoms’ global reach and their potential to spread digital financial services is still largely untapped. As several cases in Africa have illustrated, once regulatory barriers are removed, mobile phone users will rapidly adopt mobile financial services. We believe that now is the perfect time for Telcoin to enter this market. As regulation on both mobile financial services and cryptocurrencies begin to loosen, Telcoin will undoubtedly benefit from the reach of mobile operators.
  • KYC Compliance. Most exchanges now require a traditional bank account and a cumbersome “know your customer” (KYC) authorization before allowing the purchase of any cryptocurrency. This is a major drawback for companies working on the blockchain trying to address financial inclusion in developing countries. By going with a telecom-distributed cryptocurrency, a certain amount of KYC compliance is already in place. Telecom KYC is admittedly thin in most markets, but it’s a start. Telecoms also have a significant technical advantage to be able to actually know their customer — based on call detail records (CDRs), location-based services (LBS), and other network elements that are already commonly leveraged by fraud management platforms. A bank relies on the customer’s word on a KYC form — the telecom operator, on the other hand, has real evidence regarding the customer’s usage patterns. So it could be argued that a mobile operator’s ability to perform effective KYC is actually far greater than a traditional bank’s ability to do so. Telcoin will leverage existing telecoms KYC in place for mobile money access and work with the telecoms to meet standards required for cryptocurrency.
  • Incentivize telecoms to accept and promote Telcoin. We will implement an issuance incentive model whereby mobile networks who allow exchange with Telcoin will receive newly issued Telcoin. Networks with larger amount of Telcoin exchange volume will receive larger issuances. Networks will also be incentivized with greater issuance to perform stronger KYC, including anti-money laundering, counter financing of terrorism, and fraud management — all efforts that will improve the integrity and image of Telcoin.
  • Legal and regulatory support. We will have a team dedicated to working with telecoms and regulators in each country to press forward the case for allowing exchange with Telcoin. We feel that once telecoms have been allowed to offer mobile money, and once cryptocurrency has been accepted as a taxable asset in the country, telecoms will be permitted to allow exchange with Telcoin. Our legal team will work with telecoms to reach this state and establish the terms and conditions necessary to allow Telcoin to flourish while also protecting the interests of consumers, telecoms and governments.
  • Product and technical support. A seamless end-to-end experience for users buying and using Telcoin, particularly for our early focus on remittances, is critical to Telcoin success. Telecoms have enormous reach — mobile money is available in two thirds of the developing world, where the majority of remittance recipients reside. But even with this reach, mobile money was currently involved in less than one percent of global remittances. We believe that Telcoin can help here, but users will require a seamless experience. We will have a dedicated product team focused on the end-to-end experience for subscribers on our partner networks. This will include bringing best-in-class wallet options to work with both Telcoin and mobile money, working to help improve any existing mobile money wallets, and introducing a great Telcoin wallet as well. We will also have a technical team focused on maximizing ways for integrating with partner operators, including mobile money API integration, prepaid and postpaid billing platform integrations, and deploying and integrating with telecom systems supporting Telcoin compliance.
  • Marketing support. We will have a dedicated team to ensure Telcoin is marketed effectively in each partner telecom market. Marketing efforts will focus on leveraging the reach of telecoms in a way that supports both Telcoin and mobile money adoption. We will have turnkey marketing assets for mobile operators and we will also help them with Telcoin marketing campaigns by providing customer targeting support. We will also engage in global marketing efforts to develop the Telcoin brand, and we expect these global efforts to benefit our telecom partners locally.
  1. The World Bank. Measuring Financial Inclusion Around the World.
  2. GSM Association. State of the Industry Report on Mobile Money (Decade Edition: 2006 - 2016).



Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store