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South Africa’s Largest Supermarket Chain Now Accepts Bitcoin

South Africa’s Largest Supermarket Chain Now Accepts Bitcoin

South Africa’s largest supermarket chain, Pick ‘n Pay, announced on Tuesday that it is expanding a pilot of adding cryptocurrencies as a payment option to more stores after it successfully completed the first phase.

Pick ‘n Pay, South Africa’s largest supermarket chain had joined the crypto revolution by accepting Bitcoin using the Lightning Network application. The news was first reported by a local media outlet The Times. The reports noted that this payment method was initially tested in 10 of the chain’s largest grocery stores over five months. Payments in cryptocurrencies are now available to be used in 39 Pick ‘n Pay stores nationwide. According to The Times report:

The retailer announced the decision this week, saying shoppers can pay using any bitcoin Lightning-enabled app- such as BlueWallet or Munn.

A spokesperson for the retailer said:

The transaction is as easy and secure as swiping a debit or credit card. Customers scan a QR code from the app and accept the rand conversion rate on their smartphone at the time of the transaction. Adding, the service fee for each transaction is minimal, costing the customer on average 70c, and takes less than 30 seconds.

Thus far, 39 stores in total have implemented the payment method, with plans in place to roll it out to all stores within the coming months.

Per reports by Reuters, Pick ‘n Pay said in a statement:

Increasingly cryptocurrency is being used by those under-served by traditional banking systems, or by those wanting to pay and exchange money in a cheaper and really convenient way. Many companies are responding to this by accepting Bitcoin.

In its latest pilot test, Pick ‘n Pay partnered with Electrum and CryptoConvert. Electrum’s payment platform connects CryptoConvert with Pick ‘n Pay, allowing customers to pay with the Bitcoin Lighting technology at checkout points. Carel van Wyk, founder of CryptoConvert said:

Crypto payments are still in their infancy in South Africa, but we are already seeing adoption in parts of our society that haven't previously had access to traditional financial systems.

The announcement from Pick ‘n Pay comes only weeks after the country’s Financial Sector Conduct Authority formally declared crypto assets as a financial product, thereby enabling them to be regulated.

Disclaimer: This article is provided for informational purposes only. It is not offered or intended to be used as legal, tax, investment, financial, or other advice.

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