Hong Kong-based alternative fashion news site Hypebeast revealed in a Twitter post on 20th January that it is now officially accepting bitcoin for purchases at its online store.
Hypebeast sells a wide variety of high-end streetwear and accessories, including hats, hoodies and headphones from brands like Eastpak and Puma, as well as notable designers such as Raf Simons. Prices range from under $20 to over $100 with the majority of its featured brands being from smaller, independent labels.
— Hypebeast (@HYPEBEAST) January 20, 2014
With the announcement, bitcoin joins Alipay, American Express, MasterCard, PayPal, UnionPay and Visa as payment methods accepted at the Hypebeast store. Georgia-based payment processor BitPay will process the site's bitcoin transactions.
The announcement, issued via the brand's official Twitter account, proved popular on social media, garnering nearly 80 interactions in the first hour alone. Reactions were positive among the site's fan base, though a closer look at bitcoin demographics suggests the sales success of the initiative could be an interesting test case for bitcoin.
For example, Hypebeast users are predominantly male, and at 18-to-30 years old, younger than the average bitcoin enthusiast according to recent research. An upswing in sales from this younger demographic could indicate that bitcoin is beginning to gain influence and build upon its existing base of users.
What is Hypebeast?
Founded as a blog in 2005, Hypebeast has quickly evolved into a major influencer in the online fashion space, with Fast Company noting that founder Kevin Ma's "stamp of approval can help make or break an underground or indie brand trying to catch the attention of influencers or even savvy mainstream consumers".
While not a major international name, Hypebeast is nonetheless another online retail outlet that has announced bitcoin acceptance in recent weeks, following in the footsteps of Overstock, whose announcement was seen as a watershed moment for the industry, one that could push big names like Amazon and eBay closer to acceptance.
Following the announcement, rumors began to surface that NewEgg would follow Overstock's lead, however, no formal announcement has yet been made by the California-based company.
As of February 2012, Hypebeast was garnering roughly three million unique views a month, with the majority of its traffic – 50% to 60% – originating in the United States.
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