Why this high-volume OTC crypto broker launched a bill payment service
HiveEx is going from dealing with millions to hundreds in digital money. Here's why.
While cryptocurrencies have been through a lifetime of changes in their sub-ten years of existence, development has really ramped up in the past two years – or really, in the past six months. Never before have more people been interested in talking about trading cryptocurrencies; never before have there been more digital currencies to trade; and never before have there been more ways to actually transact with cryptocurrencies.
And with cryptocurrencies picking up serious volume in recent months, the market was wide open for an over-the-counter (OTC) trader like HiveEx. The platform, launched in April, facilitated large cryptocurrency trades of between AUD$50,000 to AUD$100 million. But cryptocurrency markets move fast and HiveEx founder Fred Schebesta wanted to give digital currency users a way to not only buy and trade cryptocurrencies but to also spend their holdings.
This meant not only continuing to facilitate trades in upwards of $50,000, but also to facilitate transactions of just a few hundred dollars. So why the shift?
“Right now there aren’t many ways people can use their cryptocurrency," Schebesta explained.
"Bills are something that we all have to pay. Why not make it easy to pay them with your crypto? We may still be in the early stages of crypto and its use cases, but there’s no stopping it now."
HiveSpend is an Australian-specific service that allows you to pay any BPAY bill in bitcoin, Ether, Litecoin, Ripple or Bitcoin Cash. Schebesta says the decision to launch a bill payment service was a "natural progression" of the existing platform. The BPAY payment platform is available to all crypto traders and there's no requirement for them to be seasoned traders, an aspect that was important to Schebesta.
"A HiveSpend.com customer is someone who holds crypto and believes in the opportunity that it will bring to the way we do banking. Like me, they are excited to see cryptocurrency being incorporated into the everyday and want to support this development.”
Customers are only able to process transactions of up to $1,000 but can pay bills in excess of that amount by making multiple transactions. You can submit any BPAY bills and you'll receive a quote detailing how much you'll pay – a spread of between 3-5% is charged on top of the exchange rate. HiveSpend currently lets customers pay in five digital currencies, with the choice of coins that are supported by the platform being driven by customer demand.
Schebesta says he is open to adding more coins and the payment options will be expanding "soon". According to Schebesta, market cap and trade volume are good ways to measure coin popularity but the HiveSpend team is open-minded about the coins the platform will support.
In terms of the platform's take-up, Schebesta says it's still early days but he is optimistic.
"There is just not enough ways to use crypto and as more people have it, there will be more benefits to using it as an alternative to fiat."
Disclaimer: Hive Empire Trading Pty Ltd (T/as “HiveEx”) is a related party of Hive Empire Pty Ltd (T/As finder.com.au)