Payments giant PayPal has taken a leap of faith into the cryptocurrency market by allowing users to buy, sell and spend digital currencies.
According to Reuters, PayPal users will be able to spend cryptocurrencies at the 26 million merchants on its network starting in early 2021.
The company’s Chief Executive, Dan Schulman, said that adding digital currency functionality will prepare its systems for digital currency that are eventually issued by central banks.
“We are working with central banks and thinking of all forms of digital currencies and how PayPal can play a role,” he said in an interview.
Account holders in the United States will be able to buy, sell and hold Bitcoin and other virtual currencies in the coming weeks, while a global expansion is planned early next year.
PayPal to allow cryptocurrency buying, selling and shopping on its network
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— Anna Irrera (@annairrera) October 21, 2020
PayPal currently has 346 million active accounts having processed $222 billion in payments in Q2 of this year.
Opening up digital assets to such a wide amount of customers will undoubtedly spur mass adoption of the asset class, which has attracted significant institutional investment in 2020.
Since the start of September, both MicroStrategy and Square have made public Bitcoin investments, with $475 million and $50 million being put in respectively.
At the time of writing Bitcoin is trading at $12,260, having enjoyed a 203% rally from March’s gruelling low of $4,000.
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