Circle delays its DeFi API product, citing need for regulatory guidance

Quick Take

  • Stablecoin issuer and crypto payments company Circle has delayed its DeFi API product. 
  • The product had planned to allow companies easier access to DeFi lending protocols such as Compound on the Ethereum network.

Crypto payments infrastructure provider and stablecoin issuer Circle has delayed its DeFi application programming interface (API) product, citing the need for further regulatory guidance on its rollout.

APIs allow businesses to more simply access each others' systems and Circle had announced the product via a blog post shared by CEO Jeremy Allaire on Twitter back in June last year. He promised "seamless, safe, secure and regulated infrastructure for accessing and building on DeFi lending markets".

The DeFi API product, which would've initially helped businesses access Compound on the Ethereum network, has now been delayed and resources instead dedicated to launching the Circle Yield product and making the USDC stablecoin available on new blockchains, Circle said in a statement to The Block today. In the aforementioned blog post, users are no longer able to register interest, with the "join the waitlist" link leading back to the Circle homepage. 

"We continue to focus on empowering institutions to send, spend and secure USDC and unlock new ways of doing business with the suite of services available through Circle Account," the company said. "The timing of the DeFi API product rollout will be guided by developments in, and the availability of, further regulatory guidance, enhanced compliance tools, and blockchain identity protocols."

Circle's spokesperson didn't immediately respond to a question on the exact timing of the revised launch date.

The company has had a busy few months, launching USDC on the Hedera network in October and renegotiating a deal to join the stock market through a special purpose acquisition company (SPAC) in February. Circle reevaluated the terms of its SPAC deal to double its proposed valuation from $4.5 billion to $9 billion last month as it pushes ahead with its plans to go public.

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