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General Motors wants to make the customer experience of automobile buying as hassle-free as possible and for that, the company may start accepting Bitcoin if the customers drive that change.
Mary Barra, CEO of General Motors (GM), America’s largest automobile enterprise, softened her stance over the inclusion of bitcoin in company transactions. In her statement to CNBC Wednesday, she said that GM wants to make the customer experience of automobile buying as hassle-free as possible and for that, the company may start accepting Bitcoin if the customers drive that change. If implemented, buyers would soon be able to pay using Bitcoin.
In February this year, Elon Musk’s massive $1.5 billion investment in the cryptocurrency had introduced Bitcoin in the global automobile industry. However, at that time, GM had stated it would not be investing in Bitcoin in near future. But the recent announcement points towards a slight change in strategy. Though the onus has been put on the customers, there is no denying that GM’s positivity towards the cryptocurrency is heavily influenced by its competitor Tesla’s changing payment structure. However, the inclusion of bitcoin in official transactions will bring its own issues concerning its role in tax evasion and its conversion to actual currency.
General Motors, headquartered in Detroit, has been in news for its investments in the electric vehicle segment. Compared to its competitor Ford Motor Co (NYSE: F) that announced a $30 billion investment in EV through 2030, GM has set a $35 billion investment plan for the next 5 years i.e. through 2025 to boost the company’s EV section. To that effect, it has also announced the setting up of two US battery plants. The location is not yet announced. With consulting firms setting the estimated total sales of electric vehicles to be around 24% of global automobile sales by 2030, this seems to be the right time for companies to remodel their plans and think of the future.
The investment boom in electric vehicles comes at a time when all major automobile industries are trying to catch up with the No.1 competitor and largest electric car maker Tesla Inc (NASDAQ:TSLA). Other reasons are the constant environmental regulations and policies set by the government for the automobile sector and a general preference for electric vehicles among the affluent as well as environmental enthusiasts.
Cryptocurrency no longer seems to be the interest of a few as more and more people are getting educated and informed about it, especially, Bitcoin. The latter’s popularity saw a downward trend in the previous months, however, with the cryptocurrency gaining more attention worldwide by customers and organizations, the fad is here to stay. Recently Elon Musk announced Tesla will resume bitcoin payment in the event of reasonable clean energy usage by crypto miners. The electric car maker has put a halt on Bitcoin in the last month owing to concerns about the carbon footprint of crypto miners. Bitcoin, introduced in 2009, is a virtual currency that uses peer-to-peer technology and puts away the need of any intermediaries. 1 Bitcoin equals USD 39,305.00 at the time this article was written.