A little while back I received a survey from PayPal in my inbox asking lots of questions about cryptocurrencies. I wondered at the time if they were considering selling Bitcoin. Today a “well-placed industry source” has told CoinDesk that PayPal is indeed planning to get into crypto.
The source said:
My understanding is that they are going to allow buys and sells of crypto directly from PayPal and Venmo…They are going to have some sort of a built-in wallet functionality so you can store it there.”
It is worth noting that PayPal has been hiring for it’s Blockchain Research Group this year, so it seems likely that they will be making a move in this area.
If the “industry source” is correct this could be a huge step towards mass adoption of cryptocurrencies. At the very least, having cryptocurrency available to users of such a large payment platform would be a huge step for retail adoption.
Bitcoin was always intended for retail, rather than institutional adoption, as a means of freeing people from the financial system. While all adoption of cryptocurrency is positive, this type of mass market access is therefore particularly exciting if proven to be true.
Although PayPal has not commented about this issue directly. PayPal Chief Technology Officer Sri Shivananda has told CoinDesk that:
“We are a strong believer in the potential of blockchain. The digitization of currency is only a matter of when not if…”
With the potential for a financial depression on the horizon Bitcoin may be well placed to succeed. As discussed in a previous article in this blog about the history of Bitcoin, Bitcoin came out of the 2008 financial crisis and it’s first block even contained a message referencing this fact.
Additionally, with moves towards a cashless society on the cards, cryptocurrencies offer an option that cannot be censored by the Government or the Banks.
Whatever happens with PayPal, it looks like it is going to be a exciting time for Bitcoin.