South African based payment service provider PayFast is now offering Bitcoin support to its merchants.
PayFast is now South Africa’s first payment platform to support Bitcoin, and will offer BTC payment support to its 30,000 merchant clientele. Integration of the new payment option is the result of a partnership between PayFast and South African Bitcoin exchange BitX.
Oddly, the decision to accept Bitcoin did not originate from consumer request as with the majority of company going down the cryptocurrency road. According to PayFast’s Managing Director Jonathan Smit the decision derived mainly for experimental purposes.
“We are not really seeing a demand for bitcoin from customers per se, but bitcoin is very much a hot topic on South African lip. The position we are taking is not necessarily driven by a clear business case but we are always on the lookout for alternatives and we are always looking for ideas that could become something,” Smit said in a conversation with a local news outlet.
Bitcoin has been a hot topic in African regions for some time. With growing connectivity and a vast “underbanked” population, Bitcoin seems like an ideal platform for small to large money transfers.
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Currently PayFast will offer incentives and discounts for payments made in the cryptocurrency to test consumer response. While adoption grows the lower prices will most likely rise to compare with credit and debit card based transactions.
“We are very excited to partner with PayFast to bring the benefits of cryptocurrency to a much broader market, especially with the very clear value proposition they bring to their merchants,” stated BitX CEO Marcus Swanepoel.
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