Though Bitcoin was formally launched to the world in the year 2009, it took more than 3 years for it to be accepted as a means of payment by leading merchants. A recent global survey carried out by a leading digital assets company revealed that just 4% of the merchants surveyed were accepting Bitcoin or cryptos as payment methods. However, 60% of the merchants surveyed were willing to accept Bitcoin as a payment method within the next year.
In contrast, 40% of the customers were already using Bitcoin or crypto as payment methods, whereas the remaining 60% of customers surveyed were willing to switch over to crypto payment methods within the next year.
So, are you willing to switch over to crypto payment method?
With the rising popularity of crypto assets in Australia, the growth and mainstream acceptance of Bitcoin has gained momentum. Across the world, retail giants have started accepting payments in cryptos. Among them, the prominent retailers are AT&T, Home Depot, Newegg, Overstock, PayPal, Starbucks, and Twitch. All of these entities allow customers to transact and pay using crypto. This provided ‘On the Run (OTR)’, another retail chain giant, an opportunity to capture the untapped yet fast-growing crypto markets for the benefit of their customers.
It would be interesting to see the mass segment of customers adopting the Bitcoin payment method while buying gas or snacks from the OTR giant. Before discussing the Australian retail chain giant accepting Bitcoin or crypto as a payment method, let’s take a look at the crypto adoption status and regulations in Australia.
Australia Focuses on Crypto
In terms of crypto adoption, Australia is currently ranked third-highest with 18% of the country’s population holding cryptos. This significant aspect of crypto adoption rate has caught the attention of the Australian Government and it has begun regulating cryptos. Last month, the Australian Government proposed changes to the extant payment system with the objective of creating a taxation system for transactions in crypto assets in order to protect the retail investors from corrupt dealers.
The proposed changes will also incorporate transactions of the digital banks and crypto exchanges operating in the country. The legislation aims not only to improve protection for retail investors but also to strengthen its financial system. The Australian Government is in the process of consulting various stakeholders to implement a proposed crypto-asset reform plan.
OTR to soon accept Bitcoin or cryptos
In what could be considered as one of the biggest Bitcoin or crypto adoption moves, one of the largest gas station and convenience stores, OTR, a retail chain in Australia is likely to start accepting Bitcoin or crypto payments.
To begin with, OTR will accept Bitcoin or cryptos across 170 stores located in two states, namely, South Australia and Victoria. OTR has a large presence in the largest cities of Australia – Adelaide, Melbourne, and Sydney – with a huge customer base. This announcement will allow the crypto holders or newbies to pay for gas and snacks with the new payment method. In a nutshell, 30 different crypto assets are likely to be accepted at all its outlets, but the store has not yet made public the coins that it will accept.
The OTR stores are open 24/7 making it convenient for customers to visit at any time. The customers would be able to pay using Bitcoin or cryptos at SubWay, OTR Supermarkets, OTS gas stations, SmokeMart, and Oporto, among others. This development will drive crypto acceptance in a big way across Australia. Other retail giants in Australia too would soon follow suit.
OTR, owned by a private company, Peregrine Corporation, is collaborating with one of the Singapore-based crypto exchanges to integrate the crypto payment merchant services. A Sydney-based payments platform will enable crypto payment methods at its various outlets. The consumers would be able to use Singapore-based crypto exchange applications (app) and buy available products at the store with their crypto holdings.
The recent move of Bitcoin or crypto adoption by Australian retail giant opens up such opportunities in other countries as well. Considering the increasing number of crypto holders in various countries, it would be difficult for any Government to ignore the interests of the millions of retail investors.
It’s essential to protect your crypto holdings from scammers and fraudsters, adding a safety net by storing it in a digital device called cold wallet or hot wallet. The gradual adoption of cryptos would evenly distribute various cryptos, rather than concentrate it in the hands of a few. That would reduce the volatility in the prices of cryptos to a certain extent.
Even as the retail giants in Australia are facilitating the use of cryptos as a payment method for consumers at their retail outlets, you can start buying and/or selling cryptos on one of the oldest crypto exchanges in India, Zebpay.