Mike Tyson says he is grateful to be part of the "bitcoin revolution", though he admits he's "no guru" just yet.
The ex-heavyweight champion of the world spoke with CoinDesk prior to the launch of his first branded bitcoin ATM in Las Vegas yesterday morning.
Many have accused the digital currency of having a branding problem, with Silk Road and Mt Gox still raw, but Tyson disagrees. The issue isn't so much about branding, he says, as education.
"In no way do I profess to be any kind of bitcoin currency guru. It just seems very interesting and I'm intrigued with the possibilities," he added.
The machine, which promises cash-to-bitcoin faster than the controversial boxer's knockout record, joins six others in Sin City.
100 more machines are reportedly being planned. Profits will be an "even split" between Tyson and Bitcoin Direct, according to the company's CEO, Peter Klamka. He told the launch crowd:
Clearly, Tyson hasn't been put off. He says he already knew about the currency prior to meeting Klamka, drawn in by the idea of having options beyond the banking system. "Options are a principle of democracy."
This also applies to those excluded from the banking system, or those that don't necessarily want or feel as though they have need to a bank account, he said. Though he's not swapping all his dollars for crypto just yet:
"Just because I'm intrigued by bitcoin doesn't mean that I have vowed off banks, nor am I encouraging anyone else to do so either."
Click below to view a gallery of pictures from the launch.
Images via Denise Truscello, Getty Images
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