At the beginning of June this year, Paypal posted a job opening for a Blockchain Research Engineer. The job description asked for experience and skill sets in many disciplines but touched one in particular: “Leading discovery for use cases that can further PayPal’s understanding of blockchain and specific blockchain implementations.”
This information piqued a lot of interest in the financial sector and got many to wonder if Paypal, and its associated payment application Venmo, could soon offer crypto-currency payments and wallets.
Coindesk.com recently published an article, they stated a “well-placed industry source” said:
“My understanding is that they are going to allow buys and sells of crypto directly from PayPal and Venmo,” and that “they are going to have some sort of a built-in wallet functionality so you can store it there.”
How cryptocurrency will be integrated into these platforms is still not known. Whether or not they will offer more than just Bitcoin, and include other cryptocurrencies like Ethereum and Ripple, and when it will happen is also uncertain. Coindesk.com’s source also said that Paypal “would be working with multiple exchanges to source liquidity.”
Bitcoin revenue of Paypal’s competitors is too great to ignore.
This is not Paypal’s first foray into cryptocurrency. Just back in 2016 Paypal starting offering Coinbase users the abitlity to withdraw their fiat or, crypto-money, in to their Paypal accounts. This usually involved large transactions, so a quick “one time” phone call required to verify the transaction.
Paypal is a very secure payment service, and with its interest in cryptocurrency, together with its experience with Coinbase, this could be a very clever and profitable move for Paypal. Maybe their relationship with Coinbase will fuel the change and lead to more integration?
There is another payments solution and competitor to Paypal out there called Square (co founded by Jack Dorsey a CEO and co-founder of Twitter). They have a payment system for mobile called CashApp. In 2018 they gave its users have the ability to purchase and store cryptocurrency and in May of this year, CashApp reported quarterly revenue of over $300 million from Bitcoin purchases and transactions.
Hundreds of millions of Paypal and venmo users will now have access to cryptocurrency.
This year, Paypal hit over 300 million users and Venmo’s growing user base can add a great deal more to that number. The amount of people that will now have the access, exposure and opportunity to invest in Bitcoin, or other cryptocurrencies, is massive for Paypal.
This revelation is somewhat of a U-turn by Paypal after back in 2018 – PayPal CEO Daniel H. Schulman claimed that Bitcoin is a scam. But now, in 2020, PayPal and Venmo are to offer Bitcoin purchases.
This is by no means just a Paypal thing. Many other companies have realised the value of Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies and have made their on U-turns on the matter. These include 7-Eleven, CVS Pharmacies, Rite Aid Pharmacies and Australia Post In the past these companies have started with an “anti-Bitcoin” stance, only to come around and to eventually integrate it into their systems.
The effect on Bitcoin
The price of Bitcoin seems to be unbothered by this news, but this potential influx of 300 million+ users that will now have the option to buy, sell, store and withdraw cryptocurrency makes a good case for increasing adoption. As for the effect on bitcoin casinos, well, it brings everything one step closer to the mainstream…and that makes for some potentially interesting outcomes. Watch this space.
Cryptocurrency Performance: Year-to-Date:
- Bitcoin (BTC) YTD: 29.21%
- Bitcoin Cash (BCH) YTD: 14.72%
- Ripple (XRP) YTD: -5.56%
- Ethereum (ETH) YTD: 78.53%
- S&P 500 YTD: -5.42%