US bitcoin merchants like BitPay have followed the example of card companies by avoiding marijuana businesses, but the decision by Canada’s Mega Chill to offer bitcoin payments could open up new opportunities by reducing industry frictions, according to Coin Desk.
Complex regulatory requirements mean that legal dispensaries across North America struggle to provide cash-alternative payment methods to clients, but it is thought that bitcoin could be the ideal partner for this nascent multi-billion dollar industry.
“It eliminates a lot of the complications of dealing with the banks and dealing with the credit card companies,” said Mega Chill co-owner Matt Jung, whose company reportedly uses a bitcoin wallet that cuts out the need for a payments processor altogether.
What’s more, the growing interest in bitcoin in Canada means that emerging businesses in the country are well positioned to take advantage of this payment option, especially when, as Jung says, some of his patients are actually paid in bitcoin and are looking for easier ways to spend their money.
“It’s an interesting new step to take – a new emerging technology. It’s always good to have another payment method, to have more options for everybody,” says Jung.
Mastercard is working with Stripe to expedite the payment process for American sellers on the latter's marketplaces using the instant payouts feature from Stripe.
Chase, the US consumer and commercial banking business of JPMorgan Chase & Co, has signed a multiyear agreement with Best Buy, that will see the electronics retailer accept Chase Pay in its stores, on BestBuy.com and in the Best Buy app.
Barclaycard has partnered with Case Station, a company that makes personalised phone cases, to embed contactless technology in the latter's smartphone cases.
Digital challenger bank, N26, which has been live for one and a half years and has more than 200,000 customers, rolled out a new feature that allows its customers to transfer money using Siri. All they have to do is talk to it.