The integration with the second-largest stablecoin was initially announced in October 2020. The stablecoin has since doubled its total supply to approach $6 billion, up from $2.7 billion in October 2020.
USDC is primarily used on Ethereum, where almost the entirety of its supply is found. Algorand was the second blockchain to host USDC, but it has seen slow adoption so far. Just over $11 million currently circulates on Algorand, up from $3.5 million in October 2020.
The Stellar Development Foundation hopes that USDC will power a wave of adoption of cross-border payments for the blockchain. The project reported a 104% year-on-year growth for payments on the network. The USDC integration comes with support from Circle’s APIs, which allow businesses to easily accept payments, issue programmable payouts and execute other financial actions. By obtaining a Circle Account, businesses can also swap the stablecoin between different blockchains at no cost thanks to the Circle Multichain Authorized Distributors Program.
Stellar had earlier lacked support from major stablecoin providers, which made it harder to fulfill its mission of being a cross-border value settlement layer. A number of Stellar ecosystem companies are reportedly in the process of implementing USDC in their products. It is currently available on Stellar’s decentralized exchange, though it is unclear if other exchanges are planning to support the new asset.
Stellar could offer an alternative for those who wish to transact in USDC. Circle has been positioning USDC as a fully regulated digital dollar, hoping that it will begin replacing some fiat financial rails in the United States. As congestion on the Ethereum blockchain mounts, Stellar could become a valuable network for balancing the load in a similar manner to Tether’s significant presence on Tron. Nonetheless, it remains to be seen if USDC on Stellar will have better adoption than on Algorand.