PayPal announces Bitcoin and crypto services to the UK

PayPal has announced that customers from the United Kingdom will be able to access Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies through the platform for the first time ever.

As part of an expansion from the current offering to customers in the United States, customers in the United Kingdom will be able to buy, sell, and hold cryptocurrency through PayPal as the platform makes moves towards a global service for digital currencies.

Cryptocurrency features in the United States were first opened up to customers less than a year ago, and the platform has been working to extend the services to reach more regions. According to senior executive Jose Fernandez da Ponte, part of the team beyond the platform’s cryptocurrency department, offering customers greater alternatives to traditional cash and card has been important to PayPal. He noted that offering a digital version of money during the global pandemic has been one of the core focuses for the division and why PayPal has entered the cryptocurrency scene. He noted:

“Our global reach, digital payments expertise, and knowledge of consumer and businesses, combined with rigorous security and compliance controls provides us the unique opportunity, and the responsibility, to help people in the United Kingdom to explore cryptocurrency.”

According to reports, PayPal’s presence is at its highest in the United Kingdom with over 2 million active customers on a monthly basis using the platform for payments. With the global payments platform opened up customers to explore cryptocurrency, the shift marks an important step towards greater adoption and understanding of the industry in the United Kingdom as well as from an international standpoint.

PayPal CEO Dan Schulman hinted that the company would be launching crypto services in the United Kingdom soon, telling investors about the expansion. In the company’s second-quarter earning-call, Schulman noted that the cryptocurrency features have been gaining significant traction and that the company would be opening up the service further afield:

“Yeah, well, we continue to be really pleased with the momentum we’re seeing on crypto… We’re going to launch, hopefully, maybe even next month in the U.K., open up trading there.”