The FORUS Story
WHAT IS WRONG WITH THE CURRENT BANKING AND PAYMENT LANDSCAPE, AND HOW DOES FORUS OFFER CUSTOMERS A BETTER VALUE PROPOSITION?
FORUS IS ABLE TO PROVIDE FREE, REAL-TIME PAYMENTS EVERYWHERE – SECURELY
By using Electronic Legal Tender (ELT) or digital cash, FORUS customers can transfer their fiat (home currency) based digital money to another person or business, be they present in front of you, or located elsewhere. The currency trading is done on a Public Utility Blockchain in digital tokens linked directly one to one to the South African Rand.
FORUS is free. There are no monthly charges, no transaction fees for customers nor for merchants who accept payment via FORUS. FORUS earns revenue by charging a 3% administration fee for administering interest-free working capital and production finance.
2) DEPOSITING CASH
For someone who is paid in cash, a bank account is difficult to deposit into. One has to go to a physical branch or find one of the few cash machines that accept cash deposits. With FORUS, you can make a deposit at any participating retail store or vendor. No one wants to walk around with cash. Thousands of vulnerable people get mugged and lose cash in fires and floods. The FORUS card replaces physical cash, as the user can load money onto the card and even spend it in areas without internet connectivity, unlike Visa/Mastercard.
3) DEBIT ORDERS & BOUNCE FEES
All money taken out of a FORUS account requires the user to authorise the transaction. Even standing monthly recurring payments require user approval. No money can be taken out of your account, without your specific approval and authorization. That includes FORUS. No one can access your account, but you.
4) FINANCIAL SECURITY
One of the reasons bank accounts are not used is that one does not have control of one’s money. Now, if you had R100 in your account last week, will it still reflect R100, or could a charge have gone through. With fees for bounced transactions exceeding R100 per transaction, this has become a real problem for people who live hand to mouth.
5) BUSINESS MODEL & INNOVATION
The move to an open blockchain-based sovereign backed digital currency will revolutionise commerce and finance in Africa. By providing open API integration for Fintech companies and software developers to use digital money, innovation and growth will run rampant. It will lead to an explosion of businesses and industries that will be able to remove friction around payments and embed seamless payments into the Internet of Things.
By freeing us of banks, we also free ourselves of the antiquated notion of interest-based poverty created and consumption lending model that has driven the industry growth for the last ten years. We can now unleash the power of cloud computing, artificial intelligence and block-chain, to solve the challenges of financial growth, eliminating corruption, and providing capital to the millions of unemployed to co-invest in business opportunities in their communities and across Africa.
HOW DOES IT DIFFER FROM OTHER PAYMENT SYSTEMS?…
SOVEREIGN BACKED DIGITAL RAND
FORUS have created a sovereign backed digital rand, ZARt, a fiat-backed stablecoin, Electronic Legal Tender (ELT), and akin to Central Bank issued Digital Currency (CBDC). This is in line with national policy, and although the South African Reserve (SARB) had requested proof of concept earlier this year, it is not able to launch this at a retail level. SARB has tested the technology for Interbank settlement and are leading globally on a number of fronts.
South African banks have a national payment system, but in order to utilise it, you need a large capital base and a very large IT budget and system. With the introduction of ELT or CBDC, is that there is no float required, and no bank intermediation required.
Transactions are settled real-time on the blockchain.
“It’s not about systemic risk anymore, no one can take any money out of any one’s else’s account – not even us.”
The poor currently pay more for everything, the banks have not ceased with tracking debit orders, which means that people are not currently in control of their bank accounts.
A fundamental opportunity to change this is introduced through providing broad based access to real-time settlement and private control. The result will be Inclusion and the creation of a new expanded market place.
This allows us to move payments out of the banking space, and due to it being so secure, we can open this up to everybody, and immediately start experiencing the benefits of the 4th industrial revolution.
Security in the banking sector is a massive industry, with banks being hacked daily.
The FORUS platform is designed for cloud computing, and is a paradigm shift as current mainstream security technology was only invented only after the invention of the internet.
FORUS announced a deal with a Canadian blockchain company, CoinApp, securing the exclusive rights for Africa to roll out Sovereign backed digital currency. “Settling in under 3 seconds, no bank required, problem solved.”
FORUS have partnered with Ecentric Payment Solutions who will host the blockchain and process the payments. This partnership enables us to scale overnight, as we are able to process payments at volume and for cards to be accepted at all of the retail outlets. Ecentric currently process over 90000 retail lanes in Africa.
The FORUS platform will be hosted within Ecentric’s Payment Card Industry (PCI) Data Security Standard (DSS) Level 1 datacentres and as such run within the same environments and be subjected to the same stringent security standards as currently required by Banks / Card Associations and the Financial Services industry.
Even though Blockchain technology eliminates the need for many of these measures, FORUS will comply with existing payment industry standards in order to promote trust and facilitate easy adoption by Banks / Mobile Network Operators and Fintech platforms.
if it does not charge fees, how does it stay afloat? FORUS will be using the platform to invest in farmers, spaza’s, small business, cooperatives and community owned entities, and for this they will charge a platform administration fee. FORUS are using a revenue-based financing model. FORUS will be facilitating investments in cooperatives in Fintech, Agri-tech, Education, Sharing Economy, Student Housing, Transport and Tourism. The platform uses digital cash to provide working capital loans and investment and will provide integrated accounting and real-time oversight into businesses invested in.
FORUS also generates revenue on advertising, flipping the traditional model to an AderBuying TM model.
The permissioned platform targets advertising to customers and delivers an advertisement in transaction notifications – similar to a “Please call me”, if the user transacts and purchases the service or goods, an advertising revenue is generated at the point of sale.
COLLABORATION IS KEY
Collaboration, cooperatives, and community and worker-owned enterprise are a route to a strong economy.
“Cooperatives have turned countries around and are a proven model. Capitalism is failing, now is not the time to look at the scoreboard, inequality is growing, and we need to turn it around fast. The 4th Industrial Revolution will not be achieved in meetings but by platforms.”
“Collectively we can address these issues. People need money, they need training and they need access to markets – they need all of those things, not one.”.
“We have combined the power of social networks, cloud computing, blockchain and smartphones to create an integrated platform.”
THE DIGITAL BOND
FORUS has put together a Digital Bond and are in the process of negotiating to list on the JSE. It is imperative that we raise significant capital to invest in our bond. We are raising 1 Billion-rand Tethered ZAR (ZART), which becomes our SNR Debt and funds our float. The SNR Debt Pays Interest and is our tier one capital. Once we have that Billion sitting in the bank, we can take deposits from the public, without being a deposit-taking institution. As we have eliminated the risk to the public. The JNR Debt portion of the bond being raised is going to be deployed into productive lending using the FORUS platform, this instrument will enable to invest in a capital guaranteed instrument, and exit globally after 5 years. This local economic development bond enables social enterprise is to compete with business, with a low cost of capital.