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Former XRP partner MoneyGram turns to Bitcoin

Photo of: Joseph Stone
by Joseph Stone

The former Ripple and XRP partner is turning to Bitcoin. MoneyGram will soon allow its customers to buy and sell BTC in cash from its stores.

MoneyGram hasn’t stayed away from the cryptocurrency industry for long. Until recently, the money transfer specialist was a partner of Ripple, with whom it had formed close capital ties.

Unfortunately, the firm’s troubles with the SEC have taken their toll on this agreement. MoneyGram does not plan to throw in the towel and draw a line on the potential of cryptocurrencies and the interest of its customers for them.

In a May 12 press release, the company therefore announced the very soon possibility for consumers to acquire, for cash, Bitcoin in the United States. For this, MoneyGram is partnering with Coinme, a specialist in buying crypto with cash.

Through this agreement, MoneyGram will thus make its debut in financing and paying for cash purchases and sales of digital currencies, exclusively Bitcoin at this stage. On the technology front, the partners are bringing the MoneyGram platform and Coinme’s exchange and custody together.

But most importantly, MoneyGram is making its own network of stores available, adding thousands more outlets for Bitcoin in the United States. And that’s just the first step. An expansion to international markets is already planned for the second half of 2021.

“This innovative partnership opens our business to an entirely new customer segment. We are the first to experiment with a crypto-to-cash model by building a bridge with Coinme to connect Bitcoin to local fiat currency,” boasts MoneyGram CEO Alex Holmes.

This integration between the two companies should thus provide a quick and easy way to buy BTC via cash, but also to withdraw BTC holdings also in cash. The partners are specifically targeting new Bitcoin acquirers.

Apart from online exchanges, physical access to Bitcoin remains limited. There are only 20,000 crypto kiosks worldwide, according to the release. MoneyGram and Coinme are therefore aiming to expand accessibility.

But again, this is just a first step. Bitcoin is the entry point to this market. But “potentially”, this market could then expand to other digital currencies, it is specified. At stake is the creation of “thousands of new outlets to buy and sell cryptocurrencies.”