Giracoin, a new cryptocurrency with a focus on ease of use and wide adoption, has been launched by Gira Financial Group AG in Switzerland. The developers hope to start a “digital cryptocurrency transformation”, by creating a coin which is exceptionally friendly to a first-time user and is run by a legitimate company, to facilitate cooperation with the government.
The Wild West of cryptos
Government regulation and usability have been hot topics in the cryptocurrency industry since its very inception. Whenever a question is raised as to whether the cryptocurrencies and businesses which make use of them should be regulated by the government, and to what extent, it seems to spark a heated debate, with people arguing for widely different positions, ranging from complete integration into the legal field, to the absence of any kind of regulation.
The situation is similarly ambiguous when it comes to usability. While some coins, such as Bitcoin or Ethereum, provide their users with many high-quality tools for sending, receiving and spending their money due to the sheer size and engagement of their communities, other, less popular ones, sometimes don’t even have GUI wallets, which makes them barely usable for crypto newbies.
Giracoin’s developers aim to somewhat rectify this confusion and create a more understandable concept of cryptocurrency in the eyes of any lay person, by solidifying ties with the authorities and creating a coin which is exceptionally user-friendly, not only for the experienced people but also for the first-timers.
A new sheriff in town
Gira Financial Group AG, the company in charge of developing Giracoin, is an official Swiss intermediary and is a part of the SRO organization, which means that it is fully compliant with the financial regulations of its home country and is constantly in the state of close cooperation with the government.
The company plans not only to develop the cryptocurrency itself, but also various services which will significantly increase its usabilities, such as Girabuy.com - an e-commerce platform for merchants who accept the coin, and Girapay - an e-wallet and Giracoin payment service provider.
In addition, Giracoin crowdsources its marketing, by allowing any engaged user to help spread the word about the cryptocurrency, and make money in the process. This way, potential new users will hear about the coin from their trusted friends and acquaintances, as opposed to any impersonal and inefficient advertisement.
Raja, the CTO of Gira Financial Group AG, told us about Giracoin’s plans, goals and tools for achieving them:
Cointelegraph: What is the overarching goal of Giracoin? What does your team hope to achieve in the long-run?
Raja: We believe in independent currencies and Bitcoin has done a great job as a proof-of-concept, but to really have an independent cryptocurrency which can be used with all the advantages that it could provide, one needs acceptance not only from the users but also from the authorities.
So in the long-run Giracoin should become the accepted cryptocurrency by the users and the authorities which facilitate the use of digital currency.
That said, Giracoin itself is the current aim and tool that Gira Financial Group AG uses to build trust and acceptance in digital currency for daily users. But in the long-run, with products like Girabuy.com - an easy to use e-commerce platform for merchants who accept Giracoin, and Girapay/GiraApp - an e-wallet and Giracoin payment service provider - and numerous other services bound to Giracoin which are in development, we aim for the digital transformation of the Giracoin to real-world goods and services.
CT: What are Giracoin's major advantages, when compared to other cryptocurrencies?
R: When you talk about cryptocurrencies, we only consider the ones with a public block explorer. From our point of view, nowadays it is necessary to have a central office behind every cryptocurrency. In fact, you can't transfer large amounts of Bitcoins without knowing your customer, which results in the original idea of having anonymity and transparency not being there anyway.
Our advantage is in the fact that we aim for a real digital transformation, by creating an easily usable coin with all the advantages, e.g. fast transactions, making traceable paths of a transaction fraud proof, just to mention a few. And whether you can mine directly or not doesn't matter, what matters is that even a layman is able to enjoy the advantages of a cryptocurrency.
For this vision of an easy to use currency, we need projects like Giracoin, and the fact that Gira Financial Group AG is authorized to be a financial intermediary as a member of the SRO proves that we take care of the compliance for Giracoin users.
Gira Financial Group AG actively endeavors to create a real value around Giracoin with launching platforms like Girabuy.com and Girapay.com. Also, with our implementation of Proof-of-Stake, we have a similar pattern to that of the current FIAT currencies, which people are used to. So with Giracoin we level towards a future where cryptocurrencies become a part of everyday life, and we help everybody to undergo this digital transformation.
CT: Do you have much experience in the cryptocurrency industry? What are some other major projects your team members have worked on?
R: Our team consists of experienced members in the field of economy, law, project management and consulting and software engineering. Especially our coin development team has worked on several cryptocurrencies and implementations of the basic underlying layer the Blockchain, including extended features of such Blockchain implementations.
Besides being involved in all the cutting edge development and improvement of Bitcoin Blockchain and Giracoin Blockchain, our team is also working on other solutions, like smart contracts and other exciting features the Blockchain has to offer.
So the team is well experienced in the industry of cryptocurrency and how to create a real value for such a digital product.
CT: Let's address the elephant in the room: the lack of an open-sourced Blockchain, coupled with a heavy focus on multi-level marketing can be a red flag for many in the cryptocurrency community. Working in an industry which values transparency above almost everything else, what is your reasoning behind keeping your Blockchain private?
R: The problem with open-sourced Blockchain is that only people with knowledge about the technology can use it, whereas users without any knowledge had only got the possibility to take part in this digital revolution after exchange platforms for Bitcoin have appeared. In contrast, with Giracoin’s approach, we start directly from there - with a private Blockchain which is fully transparent through our block explorer, we just make sure that we do the technological work for all the users so that everybody can take part in the revolution from the beginning. With the private Blockchain, we can also reduce the amount and severity of security issues, such as 51 percent attacks.
Despite our transparency through the block explorer, we provide a Web wallet through Girapay.com and with the upcoming Desktop wallet users are fully independent and the main ideology of the cryptocurrency community is taken into account.
There is an internal solution called the "Atomic Solution" in the event that Gira Financial Group AG is incapacitated. Our system requires an activity from us every 7 days. Should it fail, the system automatically prepares all codes and sends them to all participants of Giracoin. The effects of this scenario are that the entire system, including that Blockchain and mining, would become open source. This ensures that the system is not dependent on us.
The Marketing strategy was decided after a long consideration of all facts and inputs we had. We are aware of the fact that such a heavy focus on “multi-level marketing” might have an impact on our seriousness to evolve in the market. But with emerging success for crowdfunding systems we consider our marketing model as a modern approach to advertising because at the end instead of wasting money on ads which might or might not reach the interested, we spend this amount by rewarding users who actively spread the word about Giracoin. Also the fact that this marketing model can spread virally can not be ignored.
CT: How is the legal environment in Switzerland, in regards to cryptocurrencies? Do you expect any interference with your operations from the government?
R: Before we launched the project, we have examined all questions of Swiss law in the context of a detailed legal opinion- 60 pages- from a well-known Swiss law firm. This is why we have joined the SRO organization and are an official Swiss financial intermediary and are allowed to act within the scope of the money laundering regulations.