Major Swiss retailers launch bitcoin gift cards
Manor and Valora are capitalising on the current crypto hype and plan to sell Bitcoin gift cards in their shops in Switzerland.
The crypto boom in Switzerland has reached a new dimension with retailers offering Bitcoin (BTC) vouchers and gift cards.
According to the Swiss daily Tages-Anzeiger, Manor, the country’s largest department stores’ chain, is already selling Bitcoin gift cards in 59 shops.
Meanwhile, retail giant Valora plans to sell BTC gift cards in its kiosks across the country from 1 April.
The Bitcoin vouchers, called “Cryptonow”, will be offered in collaboration with Värdex Suisse, a financial services provider for cryptocurrencies. Värdex is also a subsidiary of the major Swiss crypto exchange Bitcoin Suisse.
According to Simon Grylka, operations manager at Värdex, Cryptonow offers easy access for budding cryptocurrency users who are not entirely comfortable with the Bitcoin Revolution usual ways of buying virtual currencies. For Grylka, the Cryptonow voucher is something like digital gold coins.
The Cryptonow gift cards are available in three different variants ranging from 100 to 500 francs. The bitcoin gift card from Värdex comes at the right time: because in Switzerland, the crypto and blockchain industry continues to grow very strongly.
As reported, the top 50 blockchain companies in Crypto Valley have become more than 680 percent more valuable since mid-2020
BTC adoption among merchants is still growing, but Cryptonow holders have limited options for using their bitcoin gift cards.
Currently, they can redeem the vouchers through an exchange service or sell the BTC amount loaded on the card through one of the 70 bitcoin vending machines operated by Värdex.
With fixed and marginal fees charged by retailers for buying the cards, Cryptonow is still mainly just a new way to buy bitcoin at the moment.
While there are several platforms where crypto gift cards can be traded, Cryptonow is one of the first products where gift cards are loaded with cryptocurrency.
Using gift cards to buy cryptocurrencies is popular in peer-to-peer trading, especially in countries with an underdeveloped financial services infrastructure.