Bakkt to Sunset Consumer-Facing Crypto App, Focus on B2B2C
The FinTech startup Bakkt known for its crypto trading platform and other features has announced that it will be turning its focus to its business-to-business-to-consumer (B2B2C) operations. In turn, the company will be sunsetting its consumer-facing app on March 16th but will allow customers to access their cash and crypto via a web interface.
On that date, Bakkt Visa debit cards will also be deactivated. Because of this, customers are advised to view their transaction data beforehand. Similarly, those with gift cards on Bakkt will need to save their card details for reference as access to this information will no longer be offered once the app is sunsetted.
While customers will still be able to buy/sell crypto as well as deposit and withdraw funds with the new “web experience,” some other features including the ability to send crypto to friends, link loyalty programs, purchase and redeem Wyndham Rewards and Choice Privileges points , and more will all be discontinued.
This shift in strategy comes after Bakkt agreed to purchase Apex Crypto from Apex Fintech Solutions. According to the company, that platform currently works with more than 30 FinTech firms that serve a combined total of more than five million customers. Furthermore, under the terms of the deal, Bakkt will have the opportunity to present its services to Apex’s clients — a roster that currently consists of over 220 companies. The transaction, which is valued at up to $200 million based on whether or not financial targets are met, is expected to close in the second half of this year.
Commenting on the update, Bakkt president and CEO Gavin Michael said, “As we continue to gain traction with our B2B2C strategy, we are laser-focused on providing our partners and clients with seamless solutions that best serve their needs. The discontinuation of the app ensures we are supporting the relationship our partners and clients have with their customers.” He continued, “With this move, we are focusing our investment on our core solutions that have product-market fit and are positioned to scale quickly.”
While Bakkt’s decision to back away from its consumer-facing app may be disappointing to customers, it does follow a trend seen in FinTech as of late. As we’ve seen with startups such as Astra, pivoting from a front-and-center to behind-the-scenes operations can benefit businesses as it allows them to market to companies with plenty of existing users rather than pick up customers one by one. On that note, the good news for fans of Bakkt is that the service’s features may now be found on other platforms as the company embraces its new strategy. Nevertheless, current Bakkt users should be sure to complete the steps the service recommends before the March 16th transition date arrives.