Facebook's cryptocoin Libra could become a worldwide currency, says CEO of fintech start-up Tally

Key Points
  • Facebook's venture into digital currency could become a worldwide tool, says Tally CEO Jason Brown
  • "People don't understand how disruptive this could be if it really takes off," he says.
  • But the social media giant picked a hard time to enter the financial market, Brown adds.
Facebook's cryptocurrency is way more ambitious than bitcoin: Tally CEO

Facebook's new digital currency has the potential of becoming a worldwide currency, Tally CEO Jason Brown said Tuesday.

"It literally threatens the governments that issue currency, the banks that store it and the actual transmission network," said Brown, co-founder of the automatic debt payment and financial savings app.

The social media giant announced Tuesday a cryptocurrency called Libra, with the intention of making it easier for people to send money across the world. While Libra will be run by a nonprofit association supported by a range of companies and organizations, Facebook will operate Calibra, a digital wallet for storing and exchanging the digital coin.

"People don't understand how disruptive this could be if it really takes off," Brown said in an interview on CNBC's "Squawk Alley."

He expects slow adoption when it comes to everyday financial tasks, like paying bills, after Libra's 2020 release. But he said it will quickly become "the primary way people get money out of first world countries."

The Facebook announcement comes at a time when the social network is working to gain back user trust after data privacy and security scandals.

"They couldn't have picked a worse time," Brown said. "I think most consumers are going to associate this [Libra] with Facebook," even though Facebook won't actually control it.

Five experts on Facebook's new cryptocurrency

But an executive leading Facebook's Calibra division told "Squawk Box" following the announcement that consumers shouldn't be worried about the social network gaining access to their financial data.

"To earn people's trust, we are going to have to make strong commitments on privacy," said David Marcus, who joined Facebook in 2014 after serving as president of PayPal. "If people don't want to trust us, they can use any of the other wallets that will be available."