Australia’s Zip Co Unveils Crypto Road Map During Retail Investor Day

Zip will allow its U.S. merchants to accept bitcoin as payment for goods and services.

Sep 14, 2021 at 4:58 a.m. UTC
Updated Sep 14, 2021 at 3:20 p.m. UTC

Australian buy-now-pay-later firm Zip Co is planning to cater to the “millennial finance diet” by offering the ability to buy, sell, hold and pay in crypto using the company’s mobile app.

Although no commencement date for the service was announced, Zip co-founder Peter Gray said in July its crypto offering would be available within 12 months.

Zip said it will be developing a number of features based on crypto and buy-now-pay- later (BNPL) plans – the company’s bread-and-butter business model that allows customers to pay for goods in installments.

Crypto features will initially be rolled out in the U.S., with plans to expand more “broadly” in the future. Zip is among the first BNPL firms to offer crypto services to its customers.

Last month, Jack Dorsey’s payments company Square purchased Zip rival AfterPay in a bid to integrate AfterPay into Square’s existing Seller and Cash App business units.

Zip will also allow its U.S. merchants to accept bitcoin as payment for goods and services while allowing customers to convert cash rewards into bitcoin on their purchases through the use of its “BitcoinBack” feature in 2022.

Trading in crypto through the use of a native digital wallet developed by the pay-later firm was one of the most sought-after product features from users, according to Gray.

Speaking during a Retail Investor Day presentation on Tuesday, Brad Lindenberg, co-founder of Zip’s U.S. subsidiary, said crypto was a “revolution” his company “had to be a part of.”

Research previously undertaken by the company and presented Tuesday showed BNPL customers were 67% more likely to trade in cryptocurrency than non-BNPL customers.

“The innovation of crypto today feels like the internet did in 1995,” Lindenberg said. “The distributed ledger is one of the most powerful concepts in fintech.”

Lindenberg also said Zip’s approach was to ensure its crypto offerings would comply with regulations, including those in the U.S. and Australia, while maintaining easy-to-use crypto functionality.

“We don’t know exactly where this is going to land,” Lindenberg said. “However, every day it becomes more clear that we need to be part of this movement.”


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Sebastian Sinclair is a CoinDesk news reporter based in Australia.