Recently Coinbase announced it is “exploring” the addition of several new coins to its platform:
Basic Attention (BAT)
Stellar Lumens (XLM)
The keyword in the announcement is “exploring”. None of these tokens are guaranteed to be added to the platform. The announcement states explicitly:
In March we took a swing at picking Which ERC20 Tokens will Coinbase List?, using liquidity as the guiding metric in the framework. This time around our job is a little easier, since we have only five likely candidates to choose from.
So which coin is the MOST likely of the five to be added with full functionality (no limits on deposits/withdrawals, etc.)?
We think Stellar Lumens (XLM) is the likely victory for three big reasons.
Stellar is currently the sixth largest cryptocurrency by market capitalization.
As such, trading volumes should support a healthy market on Coinbase. None of the other candidates are ranked higher by market cap than Stellar.
Look and sound familiar?
Both organizations are working towards an open financial system. Therefore synergies of thought exist that will draw leadership teams together for a common purpose.
Taking the cynical view and thinking purpose doesn’t matter?
It obviously does to Brian Armstrong, CEO of Coinbase… so we wouldn’t discount it.
Stellar and XRP have a common past. Both are pre-mined. Stellar came about in 2014 after Jed McCaleb (founding role in XRP) left Ripple to work on Stellar full time. The Stellar Foundation pursued one path and Ripple (the company) steered XRP down a different road.
The debate rages on. Why hasn’t Coinbase listed the third largest cryptocurrency?
Strong opinions exist on both sides.
The XRP community alleges bias and/or manipulation, with some members going so far as to alert the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA).
Initially some market observers thought the rationale behind not adding XRP was lack of regulatory clarity. Yet with Coinbase recently being granted approval to list security tokens, that rationale seems less solid.
Usually a business (any business) will do what its customers demand. For some reason Coinbase is not listening when it comes to XRP.
We think that the reason for the divergence between customer wants and Coinbase corporate action comes down to the previously mentioned perceived purpose at Coinbase. Despite what Coinbase executives may say this simply comes down to one thing. Coinbase doesn’t find XRP’s relationship to Ripple as aligning to the Coinbase mission.
Bottom Line: By adding Stellar Lumens (XLM) Coinbase can add an asset similar to XRP without actually adding XRP. Adding XLM is extremely likely as an attempt at compromise.
Full Disclosure: I own both XLM and XRP, as well as a number of other crypto assets: BTC, BCH, ETH, WAX, OMG, GNT, REP, FCT, POLY, GAME, MANA, ARK.
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