Tembusu Systems Pte Ltd., a digital currency platform provider based in Singapore that counted Greece’s Finance Minister Yanis Varoufakis among its advisers, announced that it will soon begin implementing digital currency payments using its TRUST framework.
According to the Tembusu website, Tembusu’s TRUST framework is a global infrastructure that lets verified individuals transfer and manage assets instantly, securely, simply and inexpensively. Based on blockchain technology, it enables payment using different currencies – real-world, digital or even gold and silver. The system was developed to integrate traditional currency platforms with the emerging blockchain technology that drives digital currencies such as bitcoin.
“TRUST is taking its first step into getting widespread adoption and integration with existing systems,” said Tembusu co-founder and CEO Andras Kristof. “We’re planning to try out several possible use cases with current payment systems in Singapore, and the success of this trial will see the use of digital currency payment systems being extended into real-world context.”
A first demo, conducted in local uptown bar The Spiffy Dapper – which also hosted Singapore’s first Bitcoin ATM in 2014 – showed how the TRUST framework could be easily implemented with a computer or mobile device attached to existing POS systems. An interesting feature of the TRUST system is that it allows consumers to withdraw cash through participating businesses by processing currencies from their digital wallets to the POS systems. Businesses will then be able to cash out the digital payment into cash for consumers over the counter.
“The potential for blockchain technology is seemingly limitless, and Tembusu Systems is continuously exploring using our TRUST platform in other applications,” said Tembusu co-founder and COO Jarrod Luo. “Our goal is not to replace other payment systems like NETS and credit cards, or even checks. In fact, we are hoping the TRUST platform can be developed to integrate with these other systems, to become an organic payment integrator in time to come.”
TRUST, a next-generation distributed blockchain technology, stands for “Tembusu Reputation-based Universally Secure Transaction System.” The Tembusu website outlines the advantages of the platforms for consumers and businesses, and includes as well a section titled “TRUST for Governments.”
The government section outlines the benefits of TRUST from the point of view of central banks, law enforcement and regulatory bodies: Every user on the TRUST network is a real and identifiable person, every transaction is permanently recorded and verifiable on the blockchain (so taxes can be easily filed and verified), and the cost of maintaining and creating physical money can be reduced by using a robust, persistent, low-cost cryptocurrency.
These statements seem to imply that Tembusu is planning to develop custom implementations of the TRUST platform for governments. In fact, governments are warming up to the idea of state-controlled cryptocurerncies, with rumors of “Fedcoin” in the United States and some kind of “Eurocoin” in Europe. Greece’s Finance Minister Yanis Varoufakis wrote a blog post in February proposing a cryptocurrency dubbed Future Tax Coin (FT-Coin). Varoufakis is not impressed by bitcoin as a currency, but he is persuaded that its underlying technology could be put to effective use in troubled economies.
Varoufakis was an adviser to Tembusu Systems and helped to build a key part of its founding strategy until the end of 2014. Though Varoufakis has not played any active role for Tembusu since his decision to stand in Greece’s elections, the company still considers him as an adviser because of his foundational contributions. Therefore, it seems plausible that systems such as TRUST for governments could be candidates for actual implementation in Greece. In fact, Tembusu System stated that it is keen to explore working partnerships with institutions that want to leverage the power of the blockchain for their operations.
Image via tembusu.sg.