Algorand is an open-source, permissionless, Pure Proof-of-Stake (PPoS) blockchain protocol for “the next generation of financial products”. As such, Algorand ensures "full participation, protection and speed within a truly decentralized network".
Algorand is built by a team with deep roots in academic theory and science, led by Turing award winner Silvio Micali, who has dedicated his career to pioneering research in the field of cryptography.
Algorand competes with large payment and financial networks and focuses on industrial use-cases. One of the more notable use-cases involved the Marshall Island's plans to issue Central Bank Digital Currency.
Furthermore, Algorand offers highly-customizable smart contracts (ASCs), Asset Tokenization (Algorand Standard Assets), and Atomic Transfers built directly in Layer-1.
ALGO is the native asset of the Algorand Protocol and serves as the medium of exchange and store of value. ALGO must further be staked by network validators.