A Spokane Valley-based marketing company accepts Bitcoin as payment from its customers, becoming one of the few companies in the region to do so.
Earlier this month, Victory Media implemented a payment option that allows customers to purchase marketing projects with bitcoin and also helps nonprofits take advantage of technology to accept cryptocurrency. for donations.
While Bitcoin has been slow to catch on in Spokane due to limited means to spend it, businesses and nonprofits have the option of accepting it as a payment option, said Dayne Kuhlmann, CEO of Victory. Media.
“We observed what has happened in the cryptocurrency world over the past six months to a year, and we first saw the need for it in the space of donations and non-profit organizations. lucrative, ”he said. “A lot of clients rely on donations, and this was another way for them to increase their income. There are a lot (of nonprofits) looking to innovate and also a lot of people with Bitcoin who don’t know what to do with it yet.
Victory Media already has a few pending projects that will be funded with Bitcoin, Kuhlmann said, adding that it’s a fairly straightforward process for the company to accept Bitcoin, which could be converted into a traditional currency.
“We would like to see it become more generally accepted,” Kuhlmann said.
Victory Media is helping Spokane Valley HRC ministries accept bitcoin donations on the nonprofit organization’s website through Coinbase, a cryptocurrency exchange. Donations are tax deductible for the market value of Bitcoin, Kuhlmann said.
HRC Ministries is a faith-based, non-profit organization that provides free resources and services to individuals and families affected by poverty, abuse or neglect.
“Right now with COVID-19, there are a lot of hungry families that we are helping at HRC, and I think a lot of people don’t have a lot of extra cash either, right now,” Caleb Altmeyer said, executive director of HRC Ministries. “If they have some extra crypto, it’s a great way to help the community without giving away big chunks of their cash. It seems like a good win-win situation.
Cryptocurrency is a form of digital currency that uses an online encrypted ledger called a “blockchain” to record and secure transactions. Digital currency is decentralized, which means that it is managed by the encrypted database rather than by the US government or a central bank.
However, since cryptocurrency is decentralized and unregulated, the value of Bitcoin can be volatile.
People typically buy cryptocurrencies through online exchanges, such as Coinbase. Cryptocurrency is usually stored in a digital wallet accessible from smartphones and users’ computers.
Customers can pay for items with bitcoins at merchants by scanning a QR code with smartphones to access their digital wallets. From there, users approve the purchase and it gets transferred to the merchant’s account.
As cryptocurrency gains national recognition, several companies have announced plans to accept it as a method of payment.
Utah-based retailer Overstock.com became the first major online retailer to accept Bitcoin in 2014. In March, Tesla Motors began accepting Bitcoin as a payment method for its electric vehicles.
Landry’s Inc. chairman and CEO Tilman Fertitta told CNBC on Tuesday that most brands in his restaurant chain will soon accept Bitcoin as a form of payment within the next three months. The company’s brands include McCormick and Schmick’s, Bubba Gump Shrimp Co., Joe’s Crab Shack, and Clinkerdagger, among others.
Illinois-based Camping World said this week that it will accept cryptocurrencies as a payment method for RV purchases at all of its locations by the summer.
Locally, the Volstead Act of downtown Spokane announced in 2014 that it accepted Bitcoin. Owner Matt Goodwin did not respond to a request for comment this week on whether the bar still accepts cryptocurrency as a form of payment.
The growing popularity of cryptocurrencies has been the main driver for companies choosing to install new Bitcoin ATMs in gas stations, malls, and grocery stores.
Earlier this month, Chicago-based CoinFlip expanded to Washington with dozens of new ATMs through which people can buy Bitcoin. CoinFlip has five Bitcoin ATMs at gas stations in the Spokane area.
Kuhlmann, of Victory Media, advises those interested in cryptocurrencies to research how blockchain works before buying Bitcoin.
“Gaining a basic level of knowledge is important for everyone, and it’s important for people to understand that (Bitcoin) is coming to Spokane,” he said.