Liechtensteinische Post AG has begun selling Bitcoin in their Vaduz branches. Buyers can now get Bitcoin over the counter of the post office in Vaduz; one more step towards crypto adoption.
For now, the post only offers fiat-to-crypto exchange services. After making a purchase, buyers will receive a physical crypto wallet including private and public keys.
An announcement says, “Nothing is different from the conventional money exchange business, which has always been part of Swiss Post’s service offering. The customer receives a physical crypto wallet ― which allows him by means of public and private keys ― activation of the crypto box in the network.”
After an introductory phase, the post will extend the offer to other post offices. Eventually, the company plans to add additional cryptocurrencies to its exchange service.
Partnership with Värdex Suisse AG
Liechtensteinische Post was founded in 1999 and managed by Swiss Post, the national postal service of Switzerland. Nowadays, Swiss Post owns 25% of Liechtensteinische Post and the government of Liechtenstein owns the remaining 75%.
According to its website, Liechtensteinische Post currently operates nine post offices and has three postal partners.
To launch its crypto exchange service, the post has partnered with Swiss-based blockchain startup Värdex Suisse AG. Värdex is the largest regulated blockchain and POS network operator in Switzerland. The goal of the partnership is to “make buying and selling digital currencies as seamless and easy as a regular visit to a bank ATM.”
Värdex had previously been part of Bitcoin Suisse AG. Eventually, it was established as a company in 2017, because of increasing demand for POS solutions. Värdex is a member of the Financial Services Standards Association (VQF) and part of the Crypto Valley community in Zug.
According to its website, Värdex Suisse is “operating the largest crypto ATM network in Switzerland.” The website lists 26 cryptomats, all of which support BTC, ETH, and LTC. Considering that there are currently 48 cryptomats in Switzerland, Värdex owns more than 50% of the market.
One step closer to crypto adoption?
Liechtenstein and Switzerland are amongst the countries in the world that have the highest crypto adoption rates. Liechtensteinische Post’s OTC crypto exchange service is one more step to wider crypto adoption.
Making it easy for the general population to access cryptocurrencies is paramount for crypto proliferation. Exchange services like the one offered by Liechtensteinische Post thus play a vital role in a functioning crypto-ecosystem.
However, for those services to be successful and to drive crypto proliferation, more retailers need to accept digital currencies as a payment method. Sure, it’s great if you can get cryptos in the nearest post office or from a crypto-ATM. But what do you then do with it?
Coinmap shows businesses that accept Bitcoin payments. As of today, the map only shows 14,350 venues worldwide. Not much!
Dr. Abbas Hussain, a dentist in Zug who accepts Bitcoin as a payment method for treatments, said it happened only three or four times last year that a patient wanted to pay in Bitcoin. He believes those were probably people who work in FinTech and get part of their salaries paid in cryptocurrencies.
Thus, even though cryptos become more easily acceptable over the counter, there is still a long way to go until digital currencies will become an accepted means of payment in retail stores. The adoption online, however, is likely to happen at a much more rapid pace.