Stellar Lumens experienced a meteoric rise soon after it was first conceptualized in 2014 by Jed McCaleb, founder of Mt. Gox and co-founder of Ripple, and former lawyer Joyce Kim. Its unique approach to modernizing money transfer using traditional payment and cryptocurrency has successfully served the world’s unbanked and underbanked populations.
This guide will look at the history of the coin, company, and what the future might look like for both.
What Is Stellar Lumens?
Stellar is a decentralized payment network and protocol that can support traditional payments like euros, U.S dollars, etc. It also has its own currency known as stellar or XLM, which was created to be used within its own system. Stellar can act as a bridge between currencies so they can all function across the same financial network. The founders noted that people in many parts of the world have unequal access to financial services and sought to help them while simplifying the process.
Mixing Fintech with Cryptocurrency
One of the benefits of financial technology (fintech) companies like Stripe, Venmo, and Paypal is that they allow people to move money more easily in real-time to businesses or other individuals. But they require the sender to have a bank account to draw money from or send to.
Stellar is currently one of two companies that allows you to choose to transfer cash, money from your bank account, or cryptocurrency into either of those three forms. This payment flexibility is excellent news for the unbanked (households without bank accounts) and underbanked (households with an account who rely on nonbanks for financial services) communities. It has also been changing the cryptocurrency market by having more people buy-in and use these digital tokens’ speed and security to move other assets, like fiat currency, across borders.
What Stellar Lumens Can Offer
Here a few network features worth highlighting.
The Stellar platform makes it easy to create or convert, trade, and send digital currency on a single network without a middle institution. This flexibility extends to assets like gold and stocks, and so on.
Unlike traditional financial institutions, traveling to a physical building is not required when using the Stellar platform – simply an Internet connection and a device to connect from.
Most other cryptocurrency transactions already ensure your trade’s security but at a massive transaction cost that can take a long time to process. Stellar has that sorted with quick, low-priced transfer costs that will continue to be an affordable option even with inflation over the next few years.
Stellar is an entirely decentralized platform which means no one is in control of the coin’s value – this relies on the communities that use it, allowing for more transparency in the transactions.
Well, it’s not all rosy. People have shared their concerns that the network is yet to solve:
- Balances: There is a minimum number of Lumens the user will need to have for each asset they hold.
- Acceptability: Unlike other cryptocurrencies, XLM is not as widely accepted by retailers yet.
The History and Potential of XLM
XLM’s value is entirely dependent on various economic trends, speculation, current affairs, and most issues that other cryptocurrencies face. That said, XLM’s value has been climbing since late 2020, the first part of 2021, and there’s a possibility that it will continue upwards for the rest of the year. Stellar’s ability to make a name for themselves in 2017-2018 has offered us (the crypto world and beyond) a glimpse into what can be achieved. The price of XLM exploded to over 80 cents for a few months before fluctuating and then averaging to the 30 cents range – a price that is a massive recovery from lows for any cryptocurrency.
The company has since improved its technology and partnered with various businesses, most notably with IBM (who partners with many prominent private and central banks worldwide). This particular partnership will significantly influence the value of their coin, both in the markets and technological advances this partnership will provide, increasing the number of people who trade with it.
There’s also been a recent rise in international banks investing in or wanting to use central bank digital currencies (CBDC) as modern communities turn more cashless. By filling a gap in such a niche market, the Stellar network became more valuable over time due to its expansive assortment of uses for the people.
Should You Invest in Stellar Lumens in 2021?
Investing in Stellar, like any other investment, cryptocurrency can be risky. It’s always a good idea to learn about those risks as much as you can beforehand. However, all signs show that there is a high probability that XLM prices will go up instead of down. Their close connections with IBM, a thriving niche market, and real-world/offline applications will all allow Stellar to play a significant role in the crypto industry and undoubtedly influence XLM for years to come.