Korean Mobile Payment App Chai Reaches 500K users in 4 months – $54 million in Transactions

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Korean mobile payments app CHAI – fueled by blockchain and pegged to stablecoins – has rocked the Korean eCommerce market in its first four months – providing cheaper transactions for local businesses in Korea. During its first four months, CHAI has grown at an amazing week-over-week average growth rate of over 16 percent.

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Stablecoins provide cheaper transactions and the savings along to its users. It claims that using blockchain technology has saved merchants $810,000, based on estimated fees charged by traditional payment providers and CHAI has facilitated $54 million worth of transactions via the Terra blockchain in its first four months of operation. CHAI hit a whopping 57,815 daily active users.

chaiThe stats are formidable:

  • 500,000+ users.
  • $54 million processed to date. 
  • An estimated $810,000 saved for merchants.
  • $375 million annual run rate.

While most merchants pay about two to three percent in transaction fees, Terra and Chai use a single blockchain layer to offer rates as low as 0.5 percent. With savings of at least 1.5 percent on transaction fees, they believe merchants have saved over $800,000 in the short four months.


The average CHAI user spends approximately $20 per transaction, and the total number of transactions exceeded 2.7 million. It’s no surprise CHAI was able to process over $54 million in just four months.

terrachaiFrom the Terra Blockchain blog:

“To date, there has been a large gap between the blockchain industry and the mainstream economy. Digital assets are still mainly used for speculation rather than utility, and to the general public, blockchain technology is often reduced to a buzzword.”


Since Terra’s mainnet launched in April 2109, the project is already one of the most active blockchains in the world, with 66 stellar validators (nodes).  

It’s expected that a ‘CHAI Card’ will launch in early 2020 in a partnership with Korea’s largest payment processor BC Card. This will undoubtedly be a game-changer, allowing Korean users to pay basically anywhere within Terra’s payment network. Korea’s largest convenience store chain CU plans to add support for CHAI across its 14,000 physical locations by December 2019.


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About Richard Kastelein

Founder and publisher of industry publication Blockchain News (EST 2015), a partner at ICO services collective Token.Agency ($750m+ and 90+ ICOs and STOs), director of education company Blockchain Partners (Oracle Partner) – Vancouver native Richard Kastelein is an award-winning publisher, innovation executive and entrepreneur. He sits on the advisory boards of some two dozen Blockchain startups and has written over 1500 articles on Blockchain technology and startups at Blockchain News and has also published pioneering articles on ICOs in Harvard Business Review and Venturebeat. Irish Tech News put him in the top 10 Token Architects in Europe.

Kastelein has an Ad Honorem - Honorary Ph.D. and is Chair Professor of Blockchain at China's first Blockchain University in Nanchang at the Jiangxi Ahead Institute of Software and Technology. In 2018 he was invited to and attended University of Oxford's Saïd Business School for Business Automation 4.0 programme.  Over a half a decade experience judging and rewarding some 1000+ innovation projects as an EU expert for the European Commission's SME Instrument programme as a startup assessor and as a startup judge for the UK government's Innovate UK division.

Kastelein has spoken (keynotes & panels) on Blockchain technology in Amsterdam, Antwerp, Barcelona, Beijing, Brussels, Bucharest, Dubai, Eindhoven, Gdansk, Groningen, the Hague, Helsinki, London (5x), Manchester, Minsk, Nairobi, Nanchang, Prague, San Mateo, San Francisco, Santa Clara (2x), Shanghai, Singapore (3x), Tel Aviv, Utrecht, Venice, Visakhapatnam, Zwolle and Zurich.

He is a Canadian (Dutch/Irish/English/Métis) whose writing career has ranged from the Canadian Native Press (Arctic) to the Caribbean & Europe. He's written occasionally for Harvard Business Review, Wired, Venturebeat, The Guardian and Virgin.com, and his work and ideas have been translated into Dutch, Greek, Polish, German and French. A journalist by trade, an entrepreneur and adventurer at heart, Kastelein's professional career has ranged from political publishing to TV technology, boatbuilding to judging startups, skippering yachts to marketing and more as he's travelled for nearly 30 years as a Canadian expatriate living around the world. In his 20s, he sailed around the world on small yachts and wrote a series of travel articles called, 'The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Seas' travelling by hitching rides on yachts (1989) in major travel and yachting publications. He currently lives in Groningen, Netherlands where he's raising three teenage daughters with his wife and sailing partner, Wieke Beenen.

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