Despite Bitcoin Price Slump, Cryptocurrency Payments Steadily on the Increase in Asia
Since January 2018, bitcoin and the entire altcoin markets have slumped in value under the massive weight of bear forces. So far, the world’s flagship virtual currency has dropped a substantial percentage of the gains it made in 2017, crashing from a high of $20,000 last December to a meager ~$6,500 at press time.
Bitcoin Transactions on the Increase
Conversely, the bear markets seem to be working in favor for BitPay. The bitcoin payment processor which successfully facilitated over $1 billion in payments in 2017, is now looking to broaden its horizons and quench pent-up demand for their services.
On April 3, 2018, BitPay successfully ended its series B funding round which generated $40 million for the most extensive bitcoin payments provider. This new influx of funds takes the firm’ total raised capital to $70 million according to reports.
The CEO of BitPay, Stephen Pair, made it clear that there is massive demand for the services of his firm, hence the need to bring in new investors to help meet global requirements for bitcoin payments. In his words:
“BitPay had a record 2017 as we processed over $1 Billion in bitcoin payments. We brought on these new investors who can help BitPay scale globally to meet customer demand.”
Despite the regulatory clampdown on cryptocurrencies and ICOs in China, cryptocurrency adoption is gradually on the rise in Asia.
As reported by Forbes, the region has been one of the most ‘fertilized grounds’ for the growth of BitPay in recent years as many individuals and merchants have developed an unshakable trust in BitPay’s services. Pair claimed the following:
“Bitcoin is increasingly popular in Asia-Pacific and we see huge potential for cross-border payments. Using the Bitcoin network, we can enable businesses to have invoices paid in one day for a fee that is less than traditional banks. We also see huge growth in wallet adoption for consumers who are now looking to spend Bitcoin for Purchases.”
Bitcoin Perfect for Cross-Border Payments
On March 16, 2018, BTCManager reported that BitPay had also inked a partnership deal with South Korea’s largest cryptocurrency exchange, Bithumb, in a bid to focus more on facilitating cross-border payments.
“The partnership with Bithumb allows us to focus on South Korean businesses paying or receiving $100,000 to $5 million per invoice, where a [one to two percent] savings on each invoice can lead to dramatic cost savings,” said Sonny Singh, BitPay’s chief commercial officer.
Many in the crypto world still see bitcoin as a speculative asset and not a payment method for everyday transactions due to its volatility, high transaction fees, and slow transaction confirmation times.
However, with the new BitPay financial muscle that will enable the firm to expand its operations, as well as the growing Lightning Network that promises super-fast transactions with meager fees, Bitcoin will see more adoption as payment crypto shortly.