CoinShares analysts anticipate the emergence of a Bitcoin-based stablecoin in 2024, which could potentially rival existing stablecoins in terms of transaction speed and cost efficiency.
The development, highlighted in CoinShares’ latest outlook report released on Jan. 22, authored by the firm’s head of Bitcoin research, Christopher Bendiksen, and analyst Matthew Kimmel, suggests that 2024 will be a crucial year for Bitcoin in the stablecoin market. They predict the introduction of a Bitcoin project aimed at competing in the modern stablecoin sector, designed to be user-friendly and easily accessible.
Bendiksen and Kimmel believe that a successful Bitcoin (BTC) stablecoin project could match or even surpass the efficiency and cost-effectiveness of existing alternatives. A key advantage of a Bitcoin-based stablecoin, according to the analysts, is the underlying stability and security of the Bitcoin infrastructure.
They note, “The Bitcoin blockchain boasts the longest history, greatest stability, least technical debt, and strongest assurances,” emphasizing Bitcoin’s potential as a platform for stablecoins.
However, the pair also acknowledge existing technical barriers and user preferences. Historically, stablecoin users have gravitated towards platforms offering lower transaction costs and higher speeds.
Despite these challenges, Bendiksen and Kimmel remain optimistic about the integration of stablecoin spending into businesses and Bitcoin plugins, which could enhance Bitcoin’s monetary properties and its resistance to censorship.
The concept of Bitcoin-based stablecoins is not entirely new. Firms such as Stacks, RSK, and Liquid Network have previously developed stablecoins on Bitcoin’s layer-2 network. These include USDA, Dollar on Chain (DoC), rDAI (RDAI), and Liquid-based Tether (L-USDT).
Trust Machines, a notable player in Bitcoin infrastructure, suggests that while these stablecoins exist on Bitcoin’s second layer, there is potential for their migration to Bitcoin’s base layer in the future.
An intriguing development comes from bitSmiley Labs, supported by the venture capital arm of cryptocurrency exchange OKX. The firm is reportedly preparing to release a stablecoin on the Bitcoin blockchain in the “bitRC20 format.”
Per their white paper for “bitUSD,” all circulating bitUSD will be backed by excess collateral, with transactions visibly recorded on the Bitcoin blockchain. However, it is important to note that bitUSD will be only ‘softly pegged’ to the U.S. dollar.