Facebook’s messaging service WhatsApp is supposedly in talks with a national bank and several digital payment services in Indonesia. That’s what anonymous sources told the established news agency Reuters. Facebook has confirmed the talks with payment processors, but said these negotiations were in an early stage.
Facebook and WhatsApp are talking to three different payment processors. The first is transportation booking service Go-Jek, the second is mobile payments provider DANA, and the third and final one is fintech startup OVO. In the banking world the social media behemoth is talking to Bank Mandiri, which also operates a digital wallet service.
Even though Facebook currently downplays the progress in the negotiations, the sources from Reuters tell a different story. According to them deals are almost set into place, and the services should launch next year. At the same time WhatsApp is having similar talks in India as well.
Facebook is already working on its own wallet service, called Calibra. This service would be integrated into WhatsApp as well. However, a spokesperson already stated earlier this year that Calibra will not be available in countries that ban cryptocurrencies. This would make implementation in India a bit difficult, as India has a strong negative stance towards cryptocurrencies.
At the same time Facebook is working on its own Libra coin. This would be a stablecoin that’s pegged against the US dollar and backed by Facebook’s own assets. However, the social media behemoth has seen lots of backlash after the announcement of the coin. The American government demanded Facebook to stop working on the project, while the European Union’s antitrust regulators are also investigating into the project.
Also published on Medium.