One of South Africa’s biggest online payment gateways, PayFast, has announced that it will now accept crypto currency Bitcoin as a payment method.
The integration is being done in partnership with the BitX exchange and allows buyers to purchase good at tens of thousands of online sellers, with sellers receiving South African rand in return, PayFast says in a statement.
“There are currently over 30 000 PayFast accounts that will be able to receive payments using the innovative digital currency, in addition to credit cards, instant electronic funds transfer and certain voucher payment methods,” it says.
“BitX has made it easy for us to do this without having to take a position on the instrument,” says PayFast MD Jonathan Smit. “We are not really sure what will happen with Bitcoin going forward as it is still early days for the ‘currency’, but we’re interested in contributing to the ecosystem and seeing where it goes.”
When a buyer makes a Bitcoin payment using PayFast, they do it at the current exchange rate, provided by the BitX exchange. The exchange, in turn, communicates with PayFast if the payment was successfully received and the seller’s PayFast account is then credited with the appropriate rand amount.
The price on the seller’s website is still listed in South African rand and they receive the appropriate amount, regardless of the XBT/ZAR exchange rate.
“Until now, Bitcoin has only been accepted at a handful of online merchants in South Africa and we’re very excited to see what effect this large scale enablement will have on the market,” says Smit. — © 2014 NewsCentral Media