Lightyear, a company that is launching out of stealth today, will be using the Stellar open financial protocol to establish a universal global payments network. The company was created in response to growing interest in the Stellar network.
“We’re launching Lightyear.io due to a growing need from partners that are interested in integrating with the Stellar network, however, it’s important that the non-profit Stellar.org still manages and owns the open source project,” Stellar co-founder Jed McCaleb told Crypto Insider.
“The world’s financial infrastructure is so important it should function more like a public utility, such as the internet, and shouldn’t be owned by one for-profit entity.”
Lightyear, founded by McCaleb and Brit Yonge, previously with Palantir Technologies, wants to create an open and public financial infrastructure that, according to the founders, will enable more access for individuals, lower costs for banks, and more revenue for businesses. Powered by Stellar, an open source global protocol for payments enabling low cost, high access and seamless multi-asset transactions, Lightyear wants to enable financial entities to easily join the Stellar network.
Stellar, a non-profit organization backed by Stripe, is supported by some of the biggest names in fintech. The Stellar network has been integrated by startups, technology companies and financial institutions all over the world, with strong adoption in the Asia-Pacific region. The network carries a native blockchain-based digital currency, dubbed Lumen. Stellar is also engaged in humanitarian activities, including a Lumen distribution program to connect people and communities to low-cost financial services.
Lightyear will focus on marketing and distributing the Stellar network to global partners. In the coming months, the company plans to unveil its service and product offerings. The creation of Lightyear will allow Stellar to focus on its open source project and the lumen distribution program.
“I’m thrilled to be working with my long-time friend Brit Yonge to launch Lightyear, which represents a new phase of growth for the Stellar network,” said McCaleb. “In the last year, it’s become increasingly apparent that we needed to form a new organization to support the growing interest from current and future global partners to integrate with the Stellar network. With Lightyear, we will build on the foundation of Stellar and expand the ecosystem enabling the internet for payments.”
According to the companies, the Stellar protocol can provide interoperability between financial institutions and different payment networks, which enables faster, more efficient, and less costly payments. Stellar transactions are settled in almost real-time (3-5 seconds), for fractions of a cent, in a safe and secure network.
As Head of Asia for Palantir Technologies, Yonge previously managed the deployment of anti-money laundering, trade finance, and cyber security solutions. Established in 2004 by a group of high-profile founders including Peter Thiel, Palantir Technologies, headquartered in Palo Alto, California, is especially known as a provider of cyber security and counter-terrorism solutions to the US intelligence community and Department of Defense. Palantir’s products and services are also used by hedge funds, banks, and financial operators for data integration, information management, quantitative and predictive analytics, and trend discovery.
“In my time at Palantir, I’ve seen how the transformation of technical infrastructures can be revolutionary for an entire industry,” said Yonge. “After working with some of the biggest financial institutions in the world at Palantir, I can confidently say that the global payments space is a blue ocean opportunity. I’m excited to be working with Jed to launch Lightyear to use the Stellar network to establish a universal digital financial infrastructure to disrupt the half century old correspondent banking system.”
Image from Pixabay.