California is the home of the famous silicon valley – the cradle of some of the world’s greatest technological innovations. The state is also a leader in cryptocurrency adoption and use in the United States. At the moment, California has the highest number of businesses accepting bitcoin payments in the world. In this article, we will explain why many businesses in California accept bitcoin payments. Before that, here is an example of how conventional businesses have evolved to accept bitcoin payments.
Real Estates Accepting Bitcoin Payments
In April, Eponymous real estate started accepting payments in bitcoins. The owner, Rick Caruso, believes the cryptocurrencies are here to stay. The firm has also invested massively in bitcoin in partnership with Gemini. This move goes a long way to support the ongoing institutional adoption.
1. California is ‘Bitcoin Ready’
Crypto Head has named California the most Bitcoin-ready jurisdiction in the United States. According to the research, it has the highest number of crypto ATMs and ranks top in crypto-related google searches. The state’s legislature has also passed the highest number of passed bills and google searches. California tops Google Trends Bitcoin searches at 98%, while cryptocurrencies have a score of 93. California has a score of 5.72 out of 10 as per the research. This is a telltale sign of massive growing interest in digital assets. The most popular crypto coin in California is unsurprisingly Bitcoin, followed by Ethereum, and lately also by Loopring that is predicted to reach before the end of this year its new ATH.
2. Numerous Bills Regulating the Use of Bitcoin and Other Crypto
According to the Crypto Head research, California has been recognized for passing the most crypto-related bills. With crypto regulations in place, people have more freedom and confidence to buy products and services using Bitcoin. In 2018, the legislature enacted an assembly bill defining smart contracts and blockchain technology. Similarly, the California legislature introduced Assembly Bill 1489 in 2019, prohibiting people from engaging in digital currency-related activities without licensing from the Department of Financial protection and Innovation (formerly Department of Business Oversight).
The evolution of these laws has made cryptocurrencies and blockchain more acceptable. For instance, the governor signed the California Consumer protection law to monitor cryptocurrencies and other emerging financial products in 2020. In April 2021, the California government passed a bill allowing the use of blockchain technology to enter and store corporate records permanently. With laws in place regulating the use of Bitcoin and preventing its use for fraudulent activities impels businesses to accept the virtual currency for payments.
3. Presence of a Colossal Number of Bitcoin ATMs
California has the highest number of Bitcoin ATMs. Los Angeles is the leading city with the highest number of Bitcoins ATMs totaling 1065, while San Francisco has 257. There are 22235 Bitcoin ATMs in the United States.
These ATMs are operated by a myriad of bitcoin operators, including Cryptobase, CoinCloud, National Bitcoin ATM, Local BTM, and Coinflip. This gives businesses great options when transacting in Bitcoin. In fact, a new kind of ATM has debuted in silicon valley. The ATM does not only dispense cash but allows people to buy and sell bitcoin. In total, California has about 500 premises that accept bitcoin payments.
4. Support From Financial Institution
Not many banks offer cryptocurrency services. But California based Silvergate Capital has carved out a niche by facilitating payments between crypto exchanges such as Kraken, Bitstamp, Coinbase, and Financial Investors. Institutional investors and Exchanges can use Silvergate Exchange Network (SEN) to buy and sell crypto 24/7.
Silvergate crypto cryptocurrency customers increased from 881 in June 2020 to 1224 in the second quarter of 2021, with digital currency deposits surging to $11.1 billion. It is not surprising that also reported increases of total dollar transfer from 44% to hit $240 billion.
Using the Silvergate Exchange network, visitors and crypto exchanges can transfer digital currencies in their accounts in real-time 24 hours, seven days a week. Anyone can join the crypto space using the Silvergate Network exchange including all the enterprises big and small.
How is the bank promoting the use of Bitcoin by businesses? The bank does not charge any fees for transferring crypto through their network and using currency exchange or wire transfers services. However, they have monthly subscription fees for Stablecoin users. The best part is that they also offer a loan product that allows users to borrow against Bitcoin assets. What’s more, they offer bitcoin custody services.
New entrants have followed the lead of Silvergate. For instance, the Signature bank has launched Signet – a blockchain payment platform- while BankProv has rolled out ProvXchange, enabling crypto users to exchange money in real-time. Several financial institutions plan to roll out services for stablecoin users, crypto exchanges, and crypto-based hedge funds.
The wave of crypto trading and investment is blowing across the globe. However, California is already ahead of other states, with many businesses accepting crypto payments. This could be attributed to numerous factors, including the easy accessibility of Bitcoin ATMs and generally technology-savvy population. In a nutshell, the trend of using Bitcoin for payment in business is just getting started. The future is big.