Crypto payments seem to have achieved mainstream use: in France, 30 famous brands are going to launch support for Bitcoin payments. By early 2020, over 25,000 sales points will allow their customers to make purchases in Bitcoin. Among the retailers that will support the initiative are sportswear giant Decathlon, sneakers emporium Foot Locker, cosmetics store Sephora, furnishings retail chain Conforama, design company Moustache and more.
The news has been announced during Paris Retail Week on September 24. According to the statement, the new system of crypto payments will be launched via a partnership between point-of-sale technology provider Global POS, EasyWallet application and crypto payment platform Easy2Play.
Stéphane Djiane, CEO and founder of Global POS, commented:
“This is an important symbolic step in the evolution of payment methods in France. However, more than a symbol, what we bring to 25,000 outlets is the ability to safely enter the world of Economy 3.0.”
Initially, payments will be made only with Bitcoin. Other cryptocurrencies may be considered in the future. Stéphane Djiane said:
“Initially, the service we offer will only allow the use of Bitcoins. Our goal is to open our solution to other crypto-currencies in the future.”
While payments, funds will be automatically converted into euros at the moment of sale. Financial services company Deskoin and the Savitar exchange, that are currently applying for Digital Asset Service Provider accreditations under France’s PACTE Act providing rules for digital-asset providers in France, will be in charge of this conversion.
Co-founder of the pet food brand Mustaches stated:
“The acceptance of cryptocurrencies is a real challenge for the brands, [and] we are aware of the expectations of the public and the reach of the message we send to a whole community.”
By enabling consumers to use their cryptocurrency holdings at physical retail locations within a legalized and regulated framework, the initiative will facilitate crypto adoption and expand it beyond the current 4 million French crypto owners.
The move marks the second push for cryptos in France this year. At the beginning of 2019, the tobacco federation, the Fédération des Buralistes, received permission to sell Bitcoin. As a result, by establishing a partnership with Keplerk, a cryptocurrency wallet provider based in France, 4,000 small tobacco shops started selling special coupons for Bitcoin and allowed their customers to exchange these vouchers for cryptocurrency on Keplerk’s website provided that they have a wallet.
It is notable that this initiative received support from the French Prudential Supervision and Resolution Authority (ACPR) that is an independent authority working under the auspices of the Central bank of France.
According to Keplerk, it is also the first example in the world’s history when just ordinary outlets like tobacco shops will offer Bitcoin to a wide audience.