There is a new option on the way for Israeli companies that wish to accept orders from cryptocurrency users while they keep managing their books in fiat. A local bitcoin exchange, Bits of Gold, is launching an API service for regulated crypto payments.
New Tools for Israeli Businesses
Tel Aviv-based cryptocurrency exchange Bits of Gold has developed an application program interface (API) service meant to enable companies to accept payments in crypto and receive the value in Israeli shekels or U.S. dollars. The exchange has also developed a complimentary service that allows businesses to get paid in shekels and receive the value in cryptocurrency.
The trading venue expressed hope that the new service will allow more companies to enter the field and thus expand the payment options for Israeli crypto users. The exchange also plans to soon launch cash registers that will enable retailers to accept crypto payments as well. And the company will also begin offering a Bitcoin clearing service for businesses in the second quarter of 2019, Bits of Gold CEO Youval Rouach told the local Globes newspaper.
“Crypto transfers are not a complicated matter but the regulatory demands, which include identifying the client, make it complicated,” explained Bits of Gold VP Tomer Niv. “Our service allows to use Bitcoin and comply with the rules of the regulator, without developing a vast payments system for each business.”
The Crypto Situation in Israel in 2018
While the number of individual investors who entered the market declined, the number of companies that use Bits of Gold’s services remained quite stable in 2018, according to its CEO. And the exchange also continued to grow during the year, hiring more software developers and costumer service personnel, reaching a total staff of 21 people. However, the company also gave up on plans for buying another bitcoin ATM as well as offering clients an option to trade on a combined basket of top cryptocurrencies.
The CEO of the Israeli exchange thinks that the local securities and anti-money laundering authorities are doing a good job with regards to developing rules for the field, even making Israel an international leader in terms of crypto regulation. However, he notes that as long as the Bank of Israel doesn’t make a clear stand on the matter, commercial banks will continue to make it hard on the industry.
A recent report revealed that only 5 percent of the people in Israel invested in or used digital coins in 2018. Moreover, a total of 44 percent of Israelis say they either don’t know what Bitcoin is or just don’t understand the concept. In contrast, 42 percent of the people have reported using the direct money transfer apps that the big banks in Israel have been pushing hard over the last year in an attempt to stay relevant in the digital age.
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