In recent years the global cryptocurrency industry has grown by leaps and bounds. In the process, it has become a market that’s worth an estimated $3 trillion and still growing. But hidden beneath all of that good news is a shocking fact — that crypto adoption sits at an anemic 3.9% rate worldwide.

Part of the reason for that is the fact that it’s still quite hard for people to use cryptocurrencies in the real world. The reality is that it’s still far easier to buy crypto than it is to spend it, and that confines crypto adoption to only those looking to use it as an investment.

But earlier this month, financial services standout Stripe made an announcement that may finally signal that crypto’s heading for mainstream adoption. Here’s what Stripe’s planning to do and what it could mean to the cryptocurrency industry writ large.

New Support for Crypto Businesses

Stripe is one of the leading online payment processing services in the world. And back in 2014, it was one of the first payment processors to begin accepting Bitcoin as a form of payment for its customers. Unfortunately, that support was short-lived, with Bitcoin support lasting only 4 years before being discontinued in 2018.

But earlier this month, Stripe made some moves that signal its intention to extend support to the crypto market once more. They’ve announced a new set of products — including a suite of tools and APIs — to help their customers make cryptocurrencies a part of their operations. The new products will provide businesses with easier ways to:

  • Purchase and store over 135 different crypto tokens
  • Trade NFTs
  • Exchange crypto holdings for up to 180 different fiat currencies
  • Manage compliance practices like know-your-customer (KYC)

In short, Stripe is about to make crypto a realistic option for businesses both large and small across most of the world.

 

A Variety of Partners

In addition to the new products that Stripe has in store for its customers, it also announced some significant partnerships aimed at deepening its ties to the crypto industry. Among them is a tie-up with crypto exchange FTX, which it says will help to strengthen Stripe’s identity compliance offerings and fiat onboarding functions for its customers.

And FTX wasn’t the only notable crypto name to get on board with Stripe’s new initiative. In its announcement, Stripe also indicated that it had partnership deals arranged with Blockchain.com, Nifty Gateway, and Just Mining as well. And although the details of those partnerships aren’t immediately clear, they’re a sign that Stripe is going all-in on crypto in a way they shied away from in the past.

The Bottom Line

At the end of the day, Stripe’s massive reach within the business community means that their move back into crypto could be a true game-changer. With their new array of services, they’ll make it possible for more businesses to accept crypto for payment and to use it as real value storage themselves. And that means the majority of people who’ve thus far avoided crypto use may finally have a reason to adopt the technology en masse. In other words, this may be a sign that cryptocurrencies are about to go mainstream like never before. And if they do — the sky’s the limit for all involved.


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