The Liverpool Local Pound launched barely a month ago and already has more than 3,000 users. According to Amos Meiri, CEO of Colu, the company behind the digital currency, there is a transaction using the currency every five to 10 minutes.
Next month Meiri will launch another digital currency in East London that will also be pegged to pound sterling – with one LLP equalling £1.
According to the New Economics Forum, money spent with independent businesses circulates in the local economy up to three times longer than when it’s spent with national chains. Most local currencies aim to capitalise on this – and the LLP is no different.
“When I was a kid I used to go and buy vegetables for my mum and the grocer knew my name and knew what vegetables my mum liked,” Meiri told Telegraph Travel.
“That personal experience has got lost in the scale of a city and we want to get it back.”
Anyone with a smartphone and the Colu app can use the LLP. Users can top up their digital wallets using their credit cards and perform transactions easily, with immediate transfer of money between accounts. First time users will be credited five free LLPs.
A subscription fee of £25 per month is charged by Colu to merchants. It is also planning to levy a 5% fee on users when they take money out of circulation.
By taking advantage of locals-only offers and discounts, Colu said that consumers and merchants get more for their money if they use the LLP for purchasing goods.