BitPay today expanded its stable of stablecoin offerings for merchant settlement to include the new Paxos Standard, the most heavily traded of the recently-launched group of “regulated stablecoins.”
BitPay has already added support for Circle’s USD Coin and Gemini’s GUSD. It has apparently decided not to support USDT — or Tether –which was the world’s first major “stablecoin” and has the backing of giant fiat-crypto margin-supporting exchange Bitfinex.
In a press release, BitPay CEO Stephen Pair said:
“BitPay is fully committed to transforming the financial industry through blockchain technology. We are furthering this mission by allowing our customers around the world to receive fast and low cost settlement using the USD backed Paxos Standard token. Paxos shares our vision to empower businesses across the globe to secure payments that are fast and stable.”
Merchants Empowered Through Stablecoins
BitPay has from its inception operated on the simple principle that merchants may want to accept crypto tokens, but they don’t necessarily want to engage in the volatile markets that underpin them. They and Coinbase enable merchants to accept payments in Bitcoin, and now other cryptocurrencies as well, and then settle payments in US dollars. They have provided these services since the days when Bitcoin’s total market capitalization was smaller than a large majority of publicly traded and even private companies.
The introduction of stablecoins essentially gives merchants more flexibility in how they realize the gains from their business. While stablecoins are technically a security token, they also are pegged/stabilized to the US Dollar, meaning that merchants can settle the transactions made in cryptos on the backend in these stablecoins and forgo the built-in costs of getting to fiat, and time their moves with more precision. A merchant holding a significant amount of USDC on the BitPay platform today, for instance, might choose to go ahead and buy the now-cheaper Bitcoin.
Merchants have always had the option of keeping their coin, as well.
Backed by itBit, Paxos Standard bills itself as the first regulated stablecoin, as well as the fastest-growing.
“Launched on September 10, 2018, Paxos Standard is the fastest growing stablecoin and has the highest trading volume of any U.S. dollar-backed stablecoin. PAX can always be purchased or redeemed 1:1 with USD by verified customers at Paxos.com or can be traded via global markets against other currencies such as Tether, Binance Coin, Bitcoin, Ethereum, among others. PAX has achieved the fastest and largest global adoption as the first regulated stablecoin, with daily trading volume upwards of $70,000,000 USD.”
The value of the stablecoins goes beyond the flexibility and tangibility they possess, as well. In several cases, they will present themselves as the superior way to move veritable US Dollars in and out of markets with little friction, fees, or duties. Paxos and its peers, for this reason, are unlikely to be the last offerings of this kind, and it will be interesting to see just how many options BitPay eventually offers.