With 1,800 people already signed up to The Central Bank of The Bahamas’ Project Sand Dollar digital currency platform and approximately 3,000 people cued up to be onboarded, the platform’s creator said it is his goal to onboard the entire Bahamas by the end of the year.
Jay Joe, chief executive officer of NZIA Limited – the company that created the infrastructure for the Central Bank’s digital currency – said developers are very encouraged by the initial reception to the platform.
“It’s really been a smashing success in terms of the initial reception, we’re really encouraged by it,” he said in an interview with Guardian Business.
According to Joe, it has been such an “overwhelming” success that there are more people being onboarded to the platform than originally anticipated. Next he said his company is preparing to have the digital currency rolled out in Abaco by the end of next month.
“Moving forward, what we’re trying to do is race against the clock to try and deploy this network. We’re looking at going into Abaco next. We need to complete the rest of Exuma. Abaco is already being targeted for mid-February, which is very soon and then the remaining islands. We’re trying to get The Bahamas completed by the end of this calendar year. You guys are 400,000, we’re shooting for that,” he stressed.
He said moving forward, the goal is “to really go deeper” by including more commercial banks into the platform.
“The commercial banks are already starting to come on board one by one and we’re really encouraged by that and the PSPs (payment service providers) so that they can start building on the Sand Dollar platform, so that they can really connect with the Bahamian people,” Joe said.
“We’re sticking to our original mission. Our mission here is to build a national payment infrastructure and previously we said we wanted Bahamian financial institutions and PSPs to step up and really run with Sand Dollar and we didn’t want to come in and try to build everything out. We’ve actually stayed true to that mission.”
Joe was speaking at a pilot enrollment exercise for Central Bank of The Bahamas employees.