BitPay Adds Shiba Inu, Enables Acceptance Among Merchants
At this point, a good number of everyday Americans have likely at least heard of Bitcoin and perhaps even Ethereum. Meanwhile, however, there are a number of other notable cryptocurrencies — including some with very vocal enthusiasts. A prime example is the token Shiba Inu (SHIB). Now, the coin is getting a boost as BitPay has announced it will now support the token and allow retailers that use BitPay to accept it as payment.
Like Dogecoin before it, Shiba Inu has a dedicated online fanbase — known as the #SHIBArmy. The “meme coin” was created in August 2020 and has risen to prominence throughout the year. Currently, the coin has a market cap of more than $19 billion, putting it in the top 15 for crypto assets.
With BitPay’s update, customers will now be able to buy, sell, and swap SHIB on the platform. Plus, customers with the BitPay Card will be able to spend the coin wherever MasterCard is accepted. Additionally, retailers that utilize BitPay will have the ability to accept Shina Inu.
The push for BitPay to add support of Shiba Inu actually came from AMC CEO Adam Aron. According to a tweet from Aron last month, he specifically requested the change. Now, AMC — which has embraced its own “meme stock” status — will accept SHIB for online purchases of tickets and concessions.
Meanwhile, another early adopter is Newegg. Speaking to the company’s interest in SHIB, its director of brand marketing Andrew Choi said, “We are always looking for ways to innovate the shopping experience on Newegg.com, and something our customers want is greater flexibility and options, including the ability to pay with a wide range of cryptocurrencies. Through our partnership with BitPay, we have the ability to move quickly and lead the market with flexible cryptocurrency payment options. To that end, we’re excited to offer SHIB as a payment option on Newegg.com.”
Also commenting on the move to add SHIB, BitPay CEO Stephen Pair explained, “The Shiba Inu community is passionate about its coin and serious about giving those consumers places to spend SHIB. BitPay believes that the more community involvement from coin holders supports awareness and adoption helping to move the blockchain industry to pave the way for blockchain payments to disrupt the way consumers and businesses receive and spend funds.”
While Shiba Inu’s popularity is mostly based on it being a meme, BitPay’s embrace of it along with AMC and Newegg brings a new level of legitimacy to the token. Of course, it remains to be seen whether this results in continued gains or whether interest might fizzle out. Either way, it’s always intriguing to see big brands embracing new opportunities and crypto in general.