Facebook is talking to several cryptographic projects while exploring the ways in which it can use blockchain technology.
In recent months, Facebook's blockchain team, led by former PayPal executive David Marcus, met the open source payment technology company Stellar on some of those opportunities, people familiar with the talks said Business Insider.
While the talks were at an early stage and there is no indication that they will lead to a partnership, they could shed light on Facebook's ambitions to push towards finance and hire large banks.
For example, if Facebook wanted to rival the payment networks of big banks, it could take advantage of the blockchain technology to do it, said one person who knows the company's talks with Stellar.
The speed of some blockchains compared to traditional financial pipes and pipes is one of the most cited advantages of incandescent technology. A JPMorgan research note said that a transaction on the Ripple network took four seconds against 3-5 days for traditional banking systems to process a transaction.
Facebook already seems to take other steps to enter the banking sector, reportedly considering showing users their bank account or fraud alerts.
A star insider told Business Insider that Facebook would have to record payment transactions on a stellar book distributed as Stellar. Other merchants could then connect to a Stellar-based ledger. This platform could compete with the Swift payment network linking banks and allowing money transfers.
"They would have taken the carpet from under the banks," said the person. "They can add a bank faster than a bank can build a social network."
Sources say that Facebook and Stellar have been talking about the company that potentially forked the main star network as part of its blockchain efforts. A cryptographic fork is when a blockchain is divided into two: both have the same basis, but can be managed differently forward.
Facebook is known for working with other open source technologies; is one of the biggest maintainers of React, an open source technology language. In theory, it could forge an existing blockchain instead of creating one of its own.
A Facebook representative challenged that the company would build Stellar's technology. A spokeswoman for Stellar declined to comment.
The price of Stellar Lumens has increased by about 8% following the Business Insider report on the talks between Facebook and Stellar, according to CoinMarketCap.
"Improving the lives of billions of people around the world"
A source close to Facebook's blockchain business said the company was making a long-term bet on blockchain that would most likely be similar to its investments in Artificial intelligence. Instead of focusing on a specific vertical, such as payments, Facebook's blockchain group would provide a base from which the company will be able to address a range of possible opportunities.
A recent job advertisement on Facebook reflects this idea, saying the blockchain group "is a Facebook startup, with a vision to make blockchain technology work on a Facebook scale and improve the lives of billions of people around the world. . "
The company is also trying to expand its crypto group, according to job offers. One position that the company is trying to fill is a manager for a newly-created team of software engineers within the blockchain group.
Facebook is also hiring a public policy block-policy manager to analyze blockchain issues and to advise product and business teams on these developments.
Already Shashwat Gupta, former product manager for Samsung Pay, joined as a product strategist for blockchain in May. "Blockchain" was removed from its LinkedIn profile after Business Insider spoke to a Facebook spokesperson.
And Evan Cheng was promoted to head of the engineering department for blockchain in June.
The duo joined with Facebook employees, including Kevin Weil, vice president of the product, and James Everingham, head of engineering.