Following the creation of Bitcoin, several projects emerged thinking that it could improve upon the decentralized payments system that Bitcoin had proposed. This was a bold ambition, for Bitcoin was the first mover in the space, and had years of being tested in the wild and consequently improved upon, making it the strongest out there because of its repeated weathering.
If this were nature, Bitcoin would be apex creature, the strongest survivor in the survival of the fittest game that the market is kind of like. Many other tokens have boldly claimed that they could improve upon certain technical aspects of Bitcoin, but even if they may carry out transactions faster, they fall flat in other regards and this is because Bitcoin has a lot of clout and psychological support going for it. I’ll speak on this with greater detail later.
Still, that hasn’t stopped teams from trying to overthrow Bitcoin. The teams that are focusing on bringing a payments network to the game often do so with a slight difference, or at least with something more than just a payments system - additional features tacked on, for example.
The project that I’ll speak of today is ABBC Coin, a project that goes with the bold tagline “The Future of Payments Security.” Aimed almost entirely at the online shopping experience, ABBC Coin is essentially building an ecosystem of e-commerce and digital experiences.
In this write up, I’ll examine the history of ABBC Coin, the purpose of the network, the partnerships that that the team has established and the heavy competition it faces in attempting to become a go-to payments network.
The History of ABBC
ABBC Coin was founded in 2017 by Jason Daniel Paul Philip, with the project being envisioned as a solution for the issues faced by ecommerce platforms, with the team specifically pointing towards payments times, comparatively large fees and limited payments channels as being problems that plague the market.
ABBC Coin conducted its Initial Coin Offering (ICO) from March to July 2018, raising $3.5 million. The token had initially used the the Alibaba Coin name and related branding, but has since moved away from this - a point I will discuss shortly.
The project is overseen by the ABBC Foundation, which was established in January 2018, is based in Dubai, one of its core markets. Other markets that ABBC chiefly operates in are United Arab Emirates (UAE) and Belarus.
2018 was a year of a few developments for the project, including the release of a multi-crypto wallet, shopping mall and ABBC payments solution, as well as the implementation of facial recognition features on the wallet.
2019 has been more of a low-key year for the project, and included the launch of the ABBC exchange Site and the implementation of the facial recognition system in multiple shopping malls.
The Purpose of ABBC
The target audience for ABBC Coin are primarily small and medium marketplaces - “people who are not as big as Amazon but yet have sufficient traffic to be commission-sensitive.”, as the team states. The future of payment security is a pretty bold tagline.
Specific stakeholders on the network will include marketplace owners, merchants, advertising platforms, advertisers, solutions providers and, of course, end users. The team states that it has been inspired by other projects, including Monetha, Colu, Zeex, Ubcoin, Eligma, OB1, Ink Protocol, Open Sea and others.
The team recently implemented Generation 2 of their network(which was accompanied by a switch to the EOS blockchain), which brings a transaction performance of 5000 transactions per second. As a result of working on the EOS (EOS) blockchain, the network utilized a Delegated Proof-of-Stake (DPoS) consensus algorithm. The team details its reasons for selecting the EOS blockchain in the ABBC whitepaper.
In order to support its bid to become a cryptocurrency based integrated shopping mall network, the ABBC Coin team has released several features, including the Aladdin wallet, and formed the Aladdin Decentralized Autonomous Organization (DAO). The wallet is a non-custodial wallet.
The project will soon implement ABBC Buyaladdin, which will integrate 50 of the biggest online retailers into a single platform. It is essentially a shopping mall that is a one stop shop for users to make their purchases with cryptocurrency.
The team has also worked on the Bitstorm exchange, a Dubai based exchange that is a typical exchange which works closely with the native token ABBC.
As you can see, ABBC coin is trying to make a payments system work for online marketplace and ecommerce platforms.
ABBC Coin actually stands for AlibabaCoin, which was a point of major contention because it shared a name with major Chinese ecommerce giant, Alibaba. The former quickly sought to put an end to the use of its name, taking the project to court.
Alibaba filed a copyright lawsuit against the project for the use of the name and won a preliminary lawsuit in October 2018, after some initial difficulties in filing a lawsuit. Many in the cryptocurrency community seemed to think that ABBC Coin was piggybacking off the reputation of the ecommerce giant to promote its project and network.
Frankly speaking, it is not unreasonable for an investor to think that the use of the name Alibaba had something to do with the fact that Alibaba is one of the biggest ecommerce players in the world.
In March 2019, the two parties announced that they had reached an agreement, with the official statement being that they had “reached a worldwide settlement of claims involving the use of the name Alibabacoin, with ABBC agreeing not to use trademarks that include the term Alibaba worldwide.”
It was then that Alibabacoin had become ABBC Coin. The matter seems to have been put to rest almost entirely, although one could say that the damage to the project’s reputation has been done.
ABBC Coin has worked hard to increase its legitimacy in the eyes of the public in the wake of the aforementioned controversy. According to a press release in May 2019, the team has established several partnerships, including with Deep Dive Technology, The Wall St Conference, UBERMENSCH, Beacon, The Rockefeller Foundation and Alexander Capital LP.
This was around the time that project released into integration shopping platform that aggregated data from online marketplaces that include Amazon, eBay, Alibaba and etsy.
The project has also formed a strategic partnership with UbiFun, a mobile development platform based in South Korea. The collaboration will see UbiFun being the official testing partner for the Aladdin25 shopping mall, which integrates major shopping malls and platforms onto the platform, where users can use cryptocurrencies to make their purchases.
The competition that ABBC Coin faces is fierce. This is, at its score, a payments solution, no matter if it is being dressed up with a garb that makes it seems like an ecommerce solution for small and medium enterprises that are attempting to compete with the likes of Amazon.
Given that the core value of the project is the fact that it is payments, one could name a number of tokens that are much more well known, tried and tested, liquid and with better technical capacity. These include Bitcoin (BTC), Litecoin (LTC), Stellar Lumens (XLM), and honestly, so many more.
You have to ask yourself, why would a small and medium enterprise choose ABBC Coin over Bitcoin, which is better priced, more liquid, more secure and sees better adoption over this token? One could argue that ABBC Coin has created a shopping mall experience to integrate and make more seamless the buying experience for these smaller entities, but this is not convincing enough to believe that the token will outlast the tokens in the top 10.
All these smaller entities need to do is integrate a Bitcoins payment option to begin receiving payments in Bitcoin, which is a simple enough task against working with a foundation that hasn’t yet proven itself on the level of Bitcoin or other tokens.
On top of this, Bitcoin is beginning to be accepted as an asset by national authorities, which indicates that they have some surety in the security of Bitcoin, but this may not be the case with ABBC Coin. Now, ABBC Coin and its solutions allow for payment in Bitcoin, but still, the use of an additional platform seems like more trouble for not enough reward.
In good conscience, one could not recommend Alibabacoin for investment, as there are simply too many tokens out there that could be used as a means of payment. As I said, even if it is building solutions specifically targeting the ecommerce market - small and medium businesses - those businesses simply stand to gain more by dealing with a cryptocurrency like Bitcoin.
Furthermore, the project does not seem to have made as much progress as other projects that are working in the general space. Sure, ABBC Coin may find a degree of use in the future, especially within certain markets, but that does not necessarily translate to an appreciable return on investment. Going even further, the use of facial recognition technology is a bit of a double-edged sword, and is potentially ripe for