Fintech giant PayPal is rumoured to soon be rolling out direct sales of cryptocurrency globally through its mobile payment subsidiary Venmo. First reported by cryptocurrency news authority Coindesk, this push is a complete 180 degree turn on the company’s initial stance against cryptocurrency and the blockchain.
While PayPal has long allowed the withdrawal of funds from crypto exchanges such as Coinbase, it has never allowed direct sales of crypto on the platform. With over 300 million PayPal and Venmo users all over the world, this move is expected to be a turning point in worldwide adoption of blockchain and cryptocurrency.
Paypal’s Hiring Push for Blockchain Talent
For its part, PayPal is increasingly hiring talent who specialize on blockchain, the technology that underpins cryptocurrency. In 2018, the company filed a patent designed to boost crypto transaction speeds. In 2019, it applied for another patent to defend against crypto-ransomware.
In April 2020, PayPal invested an undisclosed amount in a blockchain startup, Cambridge Blockchain, for the very first time. The startup helps companies use shared ledgers to manage sensitive data.
Users May Be Able to Buy Crypto through PayPal Soon
Once PayPal launches its new service, users can purchase crypto directly from PayPal and Venmo. Cryptocurrency news experts foresee a built-in wallet functionality where the purchased tokens can be stored. For liquidity, multiple crypto exchanges are expected to be sourced, but it’s not clear yet how many cryptocurrencies PayPal will be offering.
Soon, PayPal and Venmo could act much like Cash App does for Bitcoin as a fiat payment gateway. The direct sales capability will effectively make PayPal a cryptocurrency exchange.
What This Means for Crypto
Statista.com puts the PayPal user base at just over 300 million accounts. Its subsidiary, Venmo, facilitated payments amounting to $30 billion in the last quarter. This means that if PayPal’s plan pushes through, it can open a massive door for retail cryptocurrency investors.
To put that into perspective, one of the world’s largest crypto exchanges, Binance, only has 15 million users. One of the largest crypto exchanges in the U.S., Coinbase, has only 11.7 million users. If even 10% of PayPal’s 300 million users start using crypto products, it can fast-track adoption and change the digital asset blockchain and cryptocurrency market as we know it.
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