Tether enters Latin America with Mexican peso pegged stablecoin

Tether enters Latin America with Mexican peso pegged stablecoin

The country's multibillion-dollar remittance business and difficulties with money transfers present a "unique opportunity," the company said.

Tether expanded its stablecoin offering on Thursday, launching MXNT, a token pegged to the Mexican peso.

The token will initially be supported on Ethereum, Tron and Polyong blockchains, the company said. MXNT is Tether's first foray into Latin America and joins the company's other peso-linked coins - USDT (U.S. dollar), EURT (euro) and CNHT (Chinese yuan).

Mexico is "a prime location for the next Latin American crypto hub," Tether said, pointing to a Triple A report that said 40% of Mexican businesses are interested in using blockchain and crypto in some form.

"We've seen an increase in the use of cryptocurrencies in Latin America over the last year, which has made it clear that we need to expand our offering," said Tether CTO Paolo Ardoino. The company calls this effort a "testing ground" in Latin America that it expects will pave the way for more fiat-linked tokens in the region.

Tether also pointed to the "unique opportunity" in Mexico due to the multibillion-dollar flow of remittances into that country and the difficulty of internal money transfers.

In fact, Mexico was the third largest recipient of remittances in the world in 2021, after China and India, with nationals living abroad remitting $51.6 billion to the country, according to Mexico's Central Bank.

Tether is not the first company to notice the Mexican remittance phenomenon, which has previously attracted the attention of major crypto providers such as Coinbase, Bitso and Circle. Earlier this year, Coinbase (COIN) introduced a withdrawal service that allows local pesos to be exchanged for cryptocurrencies at more than 37,000 retail and convenience stores across the country. In November, Latin American crypto exchange Bitso partnered with Circle to launch an international remittance product that allows small business owners and freelancers to exchange their dollars for stablecoins, send them to Mexico and then get paid in pesos. A month later, Bitso also launched a cross-border B2B payment option in partnership with Tribal, allowing small and medium-sized businesses to convert Mexican pesos into Stellar USDC.