Three years after halting bitcoin payments, citing enhanced volatility and lack of efficiency, the financial services, and software giant Stripe could soon resume its support for cryptocurrencies.
During a CNBC-moderated panel at the Fintech Abu Dhabi festival on Tuesday, John Collison – the CEO of Stripe – spoke about the possibilities of his company reenabling digital asset services.
Although he failed to provide a conclusive response, Collison said the firm has not ruled out such a possibility. More precisely, he said Stripe doesn’t allow crypto payments yet, but “I think it’s not implausible that we would.”
Stripe, a dual-headquartered financial services company based in San Francisco, the US, and Dublin, Ireland, stopped supporting bitcoin payments in 2018. Back then, the firm cited BTC’s infamous volatility and a lack of efficiency as its reasoning.
Now, though, Collison outlined the growing demand for the asset class, saying, “crypto obviously means a lot of different things to a lot of different people.”
Although his company is not looking to get involved in some aspects of the industry, namely the speculative investments, as he referred to it, Collison believes there’s a way in for Stripe due to other characteristics.
“There have been a lot of developments of late with an eye to making cryptocurrencies better, and, in particular, scalable and acceptable cost as a payment method.”
Should Stripe indeed add digital asset payments, it will join the growing list of traditional financial companies to do so. Perhaps the most prominent name is PayPal, which provided its millions of customers with numerous cryptocurrency services starting last year.
Founded in 2009, Stripe has reported revenue of over $7 billion (as of 2020), and its total valuation is close to $100 billion. As of now, it’s still a privately-owned company, and Collison recently asserted that they would be “very happy” to stay that way.