Emerging Markets

    With run-ups in bitcoin’s price setting record highs this year, South Africa’s business sector is beginning to come online, growing the nation’s bitcoin ecosystem. Bidorbuy, South Africa’s version of Ebay, was a relatively early company into the space, beginning in Spring of last year. Since then, the company reports sales are steadily growing after a few bumps along the way.  

    Also read: South Africa’s Second Largest Supermarket Chain Pick n Pay Trials Bitcoin Payments

    Bidorbuy South Africa’s 18 Months of Bitcoin

    Roughly a year and a half ago, online South African marketplace, Bidorbuy, the largest of its kind in the country, began what was then-viewed as a radical experiment: the Johannesburg company allowed its customers to pay in bitcoin.

    The company uses Ebay’s model, bringing together sellers and buyers in an auction environment. It’s a haven for smaller sellers in the region where buyers can often purchase goods and services at a discount.

    South Africa's Bidorbuy Sees Six Fold Increase with Bitcoin

    Its CEO, Jaco Jonker, explained while transactions in the world’s most popular cryptocurrency remain a fraction of the site’s overall revenue, “the adoption rate of this new and not very well understood method of payment is promising and we expect to see steady growth in the future.”

    “As with any innovation, it takes time for people to get used to it,” he told Tech Financials.

    Although the first full year saw a “steady increase both in the number and in the value of transactions paid with the bitcoin digital currency,” summer produced “a noticeable decline, which can be attributed to the upheavals in the bitcoin community,” the article asserts, most-likely referring to the bitcoin cash fork.

    By fall, “the number of bitcoin payments on Bidorbuy increased by threefold,” and “the value of goods purchased with bitcoin increased almost 6.5 times,” Tech Financials notes.

    More Coming Online

    South Africa’s clearing house, Bitcoinzar, lists still more businesses ready to accept and trade in bitcoin.

    Despite operating on a comparatively smaller scale, there is a wide variety of businesses entering the bitcoin ecosystem, including roofing and waterproofing businesses, IT companies, website designers, and HVAC and air conditioning services, just to name a few.

    Even the rather bold step of including cryptocurrencies in retirement portfolios is being attempted, as reported by Business Tech.South Africa's Bidorbuy Sees Six Fold Increase with Bitcoin

    Summer of this year, as detailed by news.bitcoin.com, South Africa set a new bitcoin trading volume.

    And just over a month ago, also reported in these pages, the country’s second largest retailer announced its plans to accept bitcoin.

    All of these efforts provide more choice for customers, and they’re an encouraging sign for the region’s burgeoning bitcoiners.

    What are your thoughts on emerging bitcoin markets in places like South Africa Tell us in the comments below!

    Images courtesy of: Bidorbuy, WallpapersHD, Picknpay.

    At Bitcoin.com there’s a bunch of free helpful services. For instance, check out our Tools page!


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