Facebook has just secured an e-money license in Ireland, and that means it could be ready to launch peer-to-peer payments in Europe.
Messenger payments have been available for users in the U.S. for just over 6 months but nowhere else in the world just yet. Recent search from TechCrunch, found that Facebook was recently issued with an e-money license from the Central Bank of Ireland. The license allows Facebook issuing and payment services provision, including credit transfer, payment transactions and money remittance.
So why Ireland? Well, for starters, the country has the largest Facebook operations in Europe. More importantly though, Ireland, being a member of the European Union, an e-money license from its Central Bank applies throughout the other 27 EU member states, thanks to “passporting.” This allows any business in a EU member state to conduct business in all other member countries.
So, what will Facebook do with this e-money license? Obviously, we think the company is getting ready to launch its peer-to-peer Messenger payments services. But according to a Facebook spokesperson, the company could use the license to launch its popular charitable donations feature instead.
Now, the only remaining question is whether Facebook will operate its license throughout the EU, or only within the Euro zone (and avoid all issues linked to currency exchange).