Circle’s United States dollar stablecoin, USD Coin, will launch natively on the Base network “next week,” according to an Aug. 29 social media post from CEO Jeremy Allaire. The new version will replace the current USD Base Coin (USDbC) that most users rely on as a substitute.
— Jeremy Allaire (@jerallaire) August 29, 2023
Coinbase’s Base network launched on Aug. 9. At the time, no native version of USD Coin (USDC) existed on the network. Users could not deposit cash into a Circle account and receive equivalent USDC on Base. To solve this problem, the Base team allowed users to bridge USDC from Ethereum via an official bridge app. The token issued by the bridge is called “USDbC” and is backed by native USDC locked on the Ethereum network.
The Aug. 29 announcement states that Circle will soon begin issuing USDC on Base, eventually doing away with the need for a bridged coin backed by the Ethereum version.
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According to an accompanying blog post, the contract for the new token has already been deployed to Base. On launch day, the team will explain how the current USDbC can be redeemed for native USDC. The team will also “work with ecosystem apps” to allow liquidity providers to “smoothly transition” to providing liquidity for the new coin, and the current Base bridge that issues USDbC will continue to operate normally for the time being.
The Circle team has not announced a specific date for the coin’s official launch, as Allaire stated only that it will happen sometime “next week.”
The Base network gained over 136,000 active users on Aug. 10, the day after its launch. On Aug. 25, Base announced it would share its revenue and partly govern the upcoming “Superchain” consisting of Base, Optimism and other networks.