In recent times, the world of blockchain and cryptocurrencies have experienced increased popularity among investors and traders. With Bitcoin reaching a new ATH amidst huge market volatility, many have looked into other areas driving the acceptance and expansion of decentralized financing (DeFi). Two major players facilitating this expansion have been the introduction of NFTs and Stablecoins.
While Stablecoins have been used to represent fiat currency in recent times, their use has been suggested to be far-reaching. Thus, the introduction of Edgecoin, an Educational Stablecoin into the DeFi space has attracted widespread interest. This educational Stablecoin initiated by Edgecoin has emerged as one of its kind and could well mark the beginning of a partnership between education and blockchain. Blockchain in particular has interesting use cases in education, among which is tuition fee payments, including other academic payments such as books and accommodation. Payments done through this medium are immutable; the records cannot be tampered with and it offers an added layer of transparency to the system.
To fully understand the specifics of this Edgecoin project, we spoke with Luke Arliss, co-founder and CEO of Edgecoin.
What is Edgecoin all about?
Edgecoin is an Educational Stablecoin that provides an open payment system for educational institutions where individuals can make education-related payments such as enrollment fees, accommodation, books and all educational spending via a decentralized application. Our platform further makes it possible for these transactions to be finalized at the same speed as the internet while utilizing full educational infrastructure.
What was the inspiration behind the launch of Edgecoin?
There was a need for a payment system in the educational sector that everyone affiliated with the system cannot only utilize for payments but equally trust in making these payments. Edgecoin was equally introduced to not only benefit the educational institutions but also to reward the average hardworking student in the area of reducing his cost and also providing ways through which these students can earn. This is made possible through the “Earn while you learn” feature that comes as a result of the automatic mining of Gradecoin, a fluctuating token.
Will the Edgecoin Stablecoin have the same exchange value as fiat currencies when used to process education-based transactions?
Yes. Most Stablecoins are linked to the value of their corresponding fiat currency. In this case, the Edgecoin Stablecoin is linked to the safest currency which is the U.S. dollar at a ratio of 1:1. So, 1 Edgecoin = 1 dollar.
Edgecoin boasts of running on a stellar blockchain. How does this affect or improve decentralized payments using the platform?
The engine that power decentralized finance is the blockchain. The nature of a particular blockchain, including its speed and security, will determine how efficient decentralized applications (DApps) will work on that blockchain. The stellar blockchain is a decentralized, open-source network that was specifically created for currencies and payments. The blockchain offers fast, cross-border transactions between any pair of currencies. The network tries to unify all the world’s financial systems through a single network. By being built with an underlying stellar blockchain, Edgecoin and other associated DApps users would enjoy the super-fast and completely secure financial payment system from the comfort of their phone. The stellar blockchain will equally allow the educational institutions to receive real-time financial transactions without the need for a middleman and the subsequent elimination of fees otherwise charged by a middle man.
How does Edgecoin facilitate the adoption of DeFi?
Edgecoin facilitates the use of DeFi through the stellar blockchain network. Defi offers the opportunity to give equitable access to many financial services and has many benefits including “Yield Farming” which allows investors to borrow and lend their cryptocurrencies at much higher rates than the antiquated traditional banking system. Moreso, the system’s long term vision is to facilitate the provision of a secure and transparent peer-to-peer payment system for the educational institution. By introducing a reliable blockchain solution into education, more people are bound to appreciate the decentralized finance brought to the table, and the openness of this infrastructure would serve to improve their appeal towards other aspects of decentralized finance.
On the Edgecoin website, you listed a benefit of mining Gradecoin with each purchase of the Edgecoin Stablecoin. Can you tell us more about it?
Gradecoin (GRTC) is a fluctuating token that is automatically mined when you hold Edgecoin. This will allow students and educational institutions to “Earn while you learn”. As per the release value of the GRTC, each one of them is equivalent to 0.05 USD and there is a total supply of 1 billion which would be gradually unlocked during five years, starting from July 2021. Each purchase of the Edgecoin token guarantees a corresponding release of Gradecoin which can be used to prioritize transactions, settle block transactions fees, earn staking benefits and as payments for nodes validating and processing block transactions.
This feature is unique to Edgecoin as no other cryptocurrency offers this facility.
Why is Edgecoin a better alternative to centralized educational payments? Why should we switch to Edgecoin?
The current payment system employed by educational institutions usually involves a middle man or intermediary such as banks which charge additional rates for processing educational transactions. Since Edgecoin eliminates the need for an intermediary, the additional cost is therefore eliminated, greatly reducing the cost for the average student.
Centralized payments equally have concerns over the security of the payment data. These concerns are, however, eliminated with the use of Edgecoin’s blockchain solution. Transactions done on the blockchain are transparent and cannot be compromised and they are equally kept secure through smart contracts built directly into the platform.
Meanwhile, using Edgecoin guarantees that transactions are settled at the same speed as the internet, even faster, since the platform wouldn’t run into certain network frictions which is usually common among centralized institutions. Moreso, there is also the opportunity to earn with each payment made, a feature peculiar to Edgecoin. This platform is the future for smart educational payment-related fees.