NYSE owner Intercontinental Exchange (ICE), tech giant Microsoft, and Starbucks have partnered to launch a new company, dubbed Bakkt, that will look to develop an open, regulated, and global ecosystem for digital assets. The new venture will leverage Microsoft’s cloud solutions to enable consumers to buy, sell, store, and spend cryptocurrencies on a global network.
Investors in Bakkt include ICE, Microsoft’s VC arm M12, Galaxy Digital, Horizons Ventures, and Pantera Capital. Bakkt is in the process of obtaining regulatory approvals and will likely launch in November.
Working with a large merchant like Starbucks may help to boost crypto adoption — but not for a while.Starbucks allowed customers in Hong Kong to pay for coffee using Bitcoin in 2015, and this new project is more evidence that it wants to make this payment option easier for customers. Additionally, converting cryptos into fiat money before a transaction will likely ensure that Starbucks doesn’t have to deal with the volatility of cryptocurrencies.
However, only 23% of customers would use cryptos for buying a cup of coffee, according to data from ING, which might make it difficult for Starbucks to get customers to adopt the new payment method initially. As such, while this could certainly encourage adoption, it will likely be some time before we see consumers using cryptos widely for everyday purchases, as that will require a broad change in mindset. Read more from businessinsider.com…
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