The New Criterion
December 3, 2018
Q&A 3 December 2018
December 3, 2018

New cryptocurrency platform enables payments

Blockchain tech company Ivy and cryptocurrency broker have joined forced to launch a new payment service IvyPay, which allows people to convert their cryptocurrency into ‘fiat’ currency.

The IvyPay platform can be used to transfer cryptocurrency into fiat currency (legal tender), into a bank account or pay a bill. The service was launched in Australia last month and IvyPay has plans to launch in the United States next year.

Ivy was founded last year and is part-owned by ASX-listed Change Financial. HiveEx is part of Finder Ventures, the venture capital arm of the comparison website Finder.

IvyPay says users pay a “nominal” rate on the currency spread and a 2 per cent fee. The fee is reduced to 1 per cent if payments are made in IvyKoin.

Ivy president Ash Shilkin says: “We are still a way off from cryptocurrency being a widely accepted form of payment but our partnership with HiveEx will enable everyday Australians to use cryptocurrency to pay their bills, pay off their credit cards or convert to Australian dollars deposited in their bank account.

Ivy estimates that 2.6 million Australians own cryptocurrency and a lot more are considering it. A small number of bills are paid now using cryptocurrency.

HiveEx co-founder Fred Schebesta says there are some potential advantages to using cryptocurrency for payments. “Cryptocurrency has no borders or country associations, which means you could pay someone in the US with crypto and avoid currency exchange fees. Another advantage is that transactions are transparent.”