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TrueUSD (TUSD) is a fully collateralized ERC-20 token pegged to the price of the US dollar at a 1:1 ratio. Introduced in early 2018, TUSD is also the first cryptoasset built on the TrustToken platform. According to the website, TrueUSD is the “first regulated stablecoin fully backed by the US Dollar.”
TrustToken is an asset tokenization platform for people who want to trade physical assets on a blockchain. Starting with the creation of stablecoins like TrueUSD, TrustToken hopes to eventually provide the technology and legal structure to tokenize and transact real-world assets on blockchains in a way that is legally enforced, audited, and collateralized.
The TrustToken company was co-founded in 2017 by Jai An (CEO), Rafael Cosman (Head of Engineering and Product), Tory Reiss (Head of Partnerships and Business Development), and Stephen Kade. Before TrustToken, An was a data scientist at Kernel, Cosman was a machine learning engineer at Google, Reiss did business development at Microsoft, and Kade was a cofounder of a startup called NeuroTechX. At the time of this writing, the company is headquartered in San Francisco.
In June 2018, TrustToken raised $20 million to further develop the platform. Investors included Andreessen Horowitz, Founders Fund Angel (Pathfinder), Jump Trading Capital, Foundation Capital, Danhua Venture Capital (DHVC), Distributed Global, ZhenFund, Stanford-StartX, Signia Venture Partners, GGV Capital, and BlockTower Capital.
TrueUSD is regulated by the Nevada Department of Business & Industry because it’s US dollar holdings are stored in numerous bank accounts belonging to different trust companies in that state. In addition, TrustToken is registered and regulated as a federal Money Service Business by the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN).
Unlike BaseCoin and MakerDao which use algorithms to maintain price stability, TrueUSD keeps its value stable by being asset-backed. New TUSD is minted when an escrow account receives US dollars. When a token holder converts TUSD to USD, the commensurate amount of TrueUSD is immediately burned. Both the creating and burning of TUSD occur automatically with smart contracts on the TrustToken platform. In this way, the total supply of TrueUSD in circulation is always equal to the money in the escrow accounts.
Cohen & Company, a Maryland-based independent accounting firm, provides monthly audits of the collateralized funds held in the escrow accounts. The results of Cohen & Company’s examinations are published in monthly reports available on the TrustToken blog.
In April 2019, TrustToken launched five new cryptocurrency stablecoins: TrueGBP which is backed by the British pound, TrueAUD which is backed by Australian dollars, TrueEUR which is backed by Euros, TrueCAD which is backed by Canadian dollars, and TrueHKD which is backed by Hong Kong dollars.