Bitcoin, a intensely underground peer-to-peer payment solution, is kicking off to peek its head above ground. Today, a payment solutions company called BitPay has announced $510K ter investment, led by Shakil Khan, Barry Silbert, Jimmy Furland and Roger Verafgelegen.
Waterput simply, BitPay feels like it is placed to become the omschrijving to PayPal for the virtual currency payment processor rival, Bitcoin.
I spoke with BitPay’s co-founder and CEO, Anthony Gallippi, and he explained to my why Bitcoin has a ample chance to go more mainstream ter 2013: “We undoubtedly think it’s the future. Wij wouldn’t be spending our time if wij didn’t think that.”
What makes Bitcoin so interesting is that it flies ter the face of payment models that wij’re used to today, it’s a shove specimen rather than a pull one. When you give a webstek your credit card and billing information to buy something, the company is pulling money out of your account. Providing up that private information isn’t the safest thing, and Bitcoin permits you to “push” the money to a company to buy something. This means that no personally identifiable information goes with it, making eventual identity theft and fraud almost unlikely during the transaction.
Shakil Khan, known best for his involvement with Path and Spotify, tells mij why he determined to invest his money ter BitPay:
2013 will be the year for critical mass understanding of the importance of friction free international payments and I predict Bitcoin will become a global payment network. With very little resource, BitPay has already taken the place spil market leader ter the bitcoin payment processing ecosystem, and along with the other investors, I am very excited to help the founding team scale up and take it to the next level.
Based ter London, Khan is also an investor ter SecondMarket, Invi, BlackJet, Thread, and Summly.
Much like you’d find with companies and businesses using Stripe or PayPal, BitPay provides all of the back-end treating of payments, spil well spil “buy buttons” for the web. Te November, BitPay had 1,300 businesses using their service, but after WordPress determined to adopt Bitcoin to pay for services globally, the company spotted a dramatic rise to Two,100 merchants since then. For consumers, there is mobile integration to pay on the go, which will help Bitcoin pick up traction.
BitPay accepts Bitcoin and then puts “real” money into the bankgebouw accounts of businesses. Basically, there’s no worry on the end of merchants, because they end up getting paid the way that they’re used to. The difference is that a puny business ter Kansas City can now accept a payment from Indonesia for goods and services, which wasgoed almost unlikely before.
Until the $510K investment that the company announced today, Gallippi tells mij that his petite team has waterput te about $100K of its own money to prove out BitPay’s monster. Clearly, it’s on to something. Spil far spil what BitPay will do with the money, Gallippi says that it will instantly hire five people, mainly engineers, to help proceed to develop the toneelpodium.
I asked Gallippi why he’s so sure that Bitcoin will take off spil a payment alternative, and he had this to say:
Wij think that Bitcoin adoption will go after email, which commenced te corporate enterprise. With Bitcoin there won’t be a Ten year lagen, but a liggen, and businesses will lead the charge ter Bitcoins.
One other interesting thing is that Gallippi explained to mij that credit cards were never designed to be used on the Internet, which makes accomplish sense. Payment utilities are evolving (just look at Square), so it’s nice to see a company like BitPay step up and fight the good fight.
Visa has a billion dollar a year fraud prevention facility. Bitcoin makes this obsolete.
Those are fighting words. Sure, PayPal could begin working on Bitcoin integration, but the company very likely sees the chance spil a low priority, thus providing BitPay the runway to surge forward and lead the space. There are others attempting to grab the top spot, too, such spil Y Combinator startup Coinbase.
One thing is clear: global payments are a massive chance for any business.