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Barclays backs Circle’s UK launch

Barclays is supporting the launch of Circle in the UK. Circle will launch an app that uses the technology behind bitcoin which allows customers to transfer money with messages and emojis, and make currency transfers between pounds and dollars. Euros will be added later. Barclays will provide infrastructure to Circle to operate in the UK. Circle CEO Jeremy Allaire said customers would not be buying bitcoin through the app, which allows money transfers without fees. Circle uses bitcoin to facilitate transfers for customers outside its own system. Transactions in bitcoin are registered on a blockchain, a kind of electronic ledger, which Circle uses to make transactions. Customer deposits will be held by Barclays, which is also providing the mechanism to make transfers from any UK bank account in and out of Circle. For the first time ever, any consumer in the US or UK can instantly send value, without fees, and with the convenience of sending an email or text. US dollars and pound sterling are becoming more digital and global, Allaire said.

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