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Quahl, formerly known as Initiative Q, is an attempt to create a new payment network and digital currency.[1] It was created by Israeli entrepreneur Saar Wilf, who previously founded Fraud Sciences, a payment security company acquired by PayPal.[1][2][3][4] Quahl is backed by Cato Institute economist Lawrence H. White.[2] The initiative has indicated it will not take measures to evade state regulation.[5]

Quahl’s goal is to not replace payment cards and paper money but to create a new payment system.[6][7] It is “creating a new currency (Quahl) and distributing it to anyone who helps speed up adoption."[6] Quahl is not a cryptocurrency and is not decentralized,[6][8] but will instead be overseen by an independent monetary committee, much like a central bank.[3][6]

Marketing and rollout[edit]

Registering for Quahl is marketed through multi-level marketing.[9] The currency reserved for registrants will not be released until a critical mass of adopters identify themselves.[3][10] In November 2018, Vox.com reported that more than two million people had signed up in 180 countries.[1] Later the same month, O Globo reported more than five million registrations,[11] and The Times of India reported that countries with large numbers of registrations included India, Brazil, United States and United Kingdom.[7]


In October 2018, Frank Chung of news.com.au wrote that the marketing style could be "perceived as a scam or pyramid scheme"[2] and Daniel Huszák of portfolio.hu compared it to multi-level marketing without the fee.[9] Huszák enumerated potential problems with the scheme such as no clear crypto-currency security measures, unclear transaction/exchange costs, and potential for market manipulation by the largest holders of currency.[9] Owen Gough of Digital Spy wrote "Is Initiative Q real or fake? Short answer – we have absolutely no idea."[12]

In contrast, Brendan Markey-Tower, economist at the University of Queensland, said on Stuff.co.nz in November 2018 that it was "not a scam" and that the scheme wouldn't "make you fabulously wealthy. It is, nonetheless, an interesting idea."[8]


  1. ^ a b c Nittle, Nadra (8 November 2018). "This new would-be currency isn't crypto — but is it for real?". Vox.com. Archived from the original on 9 November 2018. Retrieved 22 November 2018.
  2. ^ a b c Chung, Frank (29 October 2018). "What is Initiative Q? Payment network insists it's not a 'pyramid scheme'". news.com.au. Archived from the original on 30 October 2018. Retrieved 1 November 2018.
  3. ^ a b c Baumer, Lilach; Hirschauge, Orr (23 August 2018). "This serial founder wants to challenge Visa through a 'global currency' for the future". TechInAsia.com. Retrieved 31 October 2018.
  4. ^ "eBay Acquires Fraud Sciences For $169 Million". TechCrunch. Retrieved 8 November 2018.
  5. ^ Q 幣」突然冒起,是否下一個 Bitcoin? ["Q coin" suddenly rises, is it the next Bitcoin?]. cup.com.hk (in Chinese). CUP Media. 12 November 2018. Archived from the original on 22 November 2018. Retrieved 22 November 2018.
  6. ^ a b c d Gusmão, Gustavo (14 November 2018). "Saiba o que é Initiative Q, projeto que promete dinheiro virtual de graça" [Learn what is Initiative Q, a project that promises virtual money for free]. Exame (in Portuguese). Retrieved 10 January 2019.
  7. ^ a b Mishra, Digbijay (29 November 2018). "20% of signups for new digi-currency from India". The Times of India. Retrieved 1 January 2019.
  8. ^ a b Markey-Towler, Brendan. "Initiative Q is not the new Bitcoin, but here's why the idea has value". Stuff.co.nz. Archived from the original on 6 November 2018. Retrieved 22 November 2018.
  9. ^ a b c Huszák, Daniel (31 October 2018). "Megőrül az internet az új fizetéses MLM-rendszerért - Kamu lenne?" [Will the Internet be crazy about a new MLM pay-per-view system - but is it fake?]. Portfolio.hu (in Hungarian). Archived from the original on 31 October 2018. Retrieved 1 November 2018.
  10. ^ Kelly, Jemima (26 October 2018). "Initiative Q: an elementary pyramid scheme with grandiose ideas [Update]". FT Alphaville. Retrieved 31 October 2018.
  11. ^ Matsuura, Sérgio (14 November 2018). "Initiative Q reúne 5 milhões de cadastros com promessa de dinheiro grátis" [Initiative Q gathers 5 million sign ups with free money promise]. O Globo (in Portuguese). Retrieved 1 January 2019.
  12. ^ Gough, Owen (2 November 2018). "What is Initiative Q: Is it the new bitcoin, or just one big fake scam?". DigitalSpy.com. Archived from the original on 1 November 2018. Retrieved 7 November 2018.

External links[edit]