BTCPoint has enabled over 10,000 ATMs to sell bitcoins in Spain. The new service was done through a partnership with Hal-Cash, which allows operators to enable money transfers to any phone and have them cash out at ATMs. Banco Sabadell, Spain’s fourth largest bank, partnered with the 4 man company and gave them access to their ATMs.
In addition to Banco Sabadell, the service will also be available on ATM units owned by Abanca, Banco Popular ING, Baninter, EVO, Cajamar, TargoBank and Caja Laboral.
The service is a major pivot for BTCPoint, which previously manufactured two-way bitcoin ATMs. The company created almost 10 ATMs, but found the process to be dreadful and filled with issues. They decided that using the existing bank ATMs would be a quicker and easier way to achieve their goal.
The service works by typing your phone number into BTCPoint’s website. From there, you will be asked to send the bitcoins you would like to sell to their bitcoin address. As soon as the cons are received, a text message will be sent to you with a pin code. Then, you can find one of the local affiliated ATMs, chose the Hal-Cash network, enter your pin code and you will receive the cash.
According to BTCPoint COO, Alex Lopera, the company has aspirations to leverage their large network of ATMs for international remittances. Theoretically, anyone around the world would be able to send money to someone in Spain through the service. With bitcoin’s global payment network, all they would need is to know the person’s phone number in order to send them money.
They also see a possible use case for tourists who are looking to quickly obtain some euros or don’t want to go through the hassle of dealing with a currency exchange.
BTCPoint was for Boost VC’s exclusive accelerator program in the summer of 2014. The company received over $20,000 in funding from the accelerator and office and living space in San Francisco during the 3-month program. They also received mentorship from Boost’s large network of Bitcoin industry veterans.
BTCPoint is second company to implement such a system. In January, Bit2Bit enabled over 10,000 ATMs in Spain as well. Like BTCPoint, Bit2Bit used Hal-Cash to access Spain’s large ATM network. The big difference is Bit2Bit charges a 1 percent fee for each transactions, while BTCPoint does not charge any fees for the time being.
What do you think this means for Bitcoin in Spain?
Photos courtesy of BTCPoint.com, bancsabadell.com, and traveltheworld.com