Bitcoin as well as other cryptocurrencies need to go mainstream. TenX, a Singapore-based startup, addresses the challenge and offers the solution – its Visa card.
The debit card will instantly convert cryptocurrencies into fiat money: the dollars, yen and euros. Currently, it supports eight digital currencies including such popular and well-known currencies as Bitcoin and lesser-known ones as dash and augur. TenX is planning to offer about 11 digital currencies by the end of the year.
“You’re mixing two worlds that are night and day,” Julian Hosp, co-founder of TenX, said. “When the user spends the cryptocurrency, we have to instantly switch these currencies to fiat and pay to Visa straight away. It’s a lot of pathways.”
TenX sets a fee of 2 percent cut from each transaction processed with the card. There is a limit of $2,000 a year at each card but users can increase it once their identity is verified. The company has already received orders for more than 10,000 cards.
Bitcoin has been in rather insecure situation recently due to increased concerns about its possible split in two. TenX came up with its own solution by developing an app that serves as a digital wallet connected to the Visa card, thus allowing card holders to use their crypto accounts while the merchant is paid in local currency.
What TenX offers is instant transactions processing with no charges on top of the conversion fee averaging from 0.15 to 0.2 percent set by cryptocurrency exchanges.
It is very likely that TenX will face some competition from major financial institutions and venture capitalists with direct access to clients and databases soon. Currently, the company processes about $100,000 of transactions a month and targets to reach $100 million in monthly transactions and a million users by the end of 2018. TenX doesn’t expect to become profitable in the next two years as it focuses on expanding services.
“It’s an incredible concept,” said Greenspan. “At the end of the day, it’s going to depend a lot on customer relations. Are they meeting the customers’ expectations? Can somebody else do it better?”
Last month, TenX raised $80 million in the ICO – half will be spent on operations expansion and the rest will provide liquidity for a cryptocurrency exchange in the works. The investment was followed by company’s announcement that their PAY token will be moveable and tradeable on one of the largest crypto-exchanges in the world Bittrex.
Earlier, the company managed to attract $120,000 from angel investors and $1 million in a seed round led by venture capital firm Fenbushi Capital.
Wirex offers a somewhat analogue banking solution that combines the speed and flexibility of blockchain finance with the acceptance of traditional currency — all in one account. The company offers secure bitcoin wallets linked to Visa and MasterCard debit cards, supported by online and mobile applications.