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  • J McGlynn and M Bacina

Amazon to accept Bitcoin as payment - Job ad sparks speculation

Rumours are circulating that multinational e-commerce company Amazon may move to accept bitcoin as payment from customers as early as the end of this year. If true - alongside others who have moved to accept crypto payments in recent years - Amazon would be bringing an asset class once shunned by major financial institutions, closer to the mainstream than ever.

What is certain is that Amazon recently posted a job advertisement for a digital currency and blockchain product lead, reaching out for someone who can:

leverage domain expertise in blockchain, distributed ledger, central bank digital currencies and cryptocurrency to develop the case for the capabilities which should be developed, drive overall vision and product strategy, and gain leadership buy-in and investment for new capabilities.

Following Amazon's announcement, London's City A.M. newspaper published a story, citing an unnamed "insider" who claims to have the inside scoop on Amazon's plans to push themselves further into the crypto space this year.

The anonymous source said that Amazon is looking to accept Bitcoin as a means for payment by the end of the year and other major digital currencies later on, describing the plans as "pretty much ready to roll". According to the statements by the "insider" including that "it is looking increasingly possible that we’re heading towards tokenisation", accepting digital currencies may be followed by the introduction of a "native token".

Before the "insider's" report, Amazon told news website CNBC, "they are inspired by the innovation happening in the cryptocurrency space" and in view of their belief that the future will be built on new modern technologies which allow for fast and inexpensive payments, "they hope to bring that future to Amazon customers as soon as possible".

However, since the insider's comments surfaced, an Amazon spokesperson has denied Amazon's "specific plans" by way of an email statement to Bloomberg (paywall), touting that despite Amazon's keen interest in the digital currency space, "the speculation that has ensued around our specific plans for cryptocurrencies is not true."

Given other companies are already moving to accept digital currency payments, like Paypal who, since May, has allowed select customers of its Venmo app, to buy, sell and hold cryptocurrency in the USA (as we previously wrote about here), and Tesla - which Elon Musk recently hinted at the Crypto Council for Innovations B-Conference (see video at 30:42) will resume its acceptance of Bitcoin as payment in the near future, it wouldn't be surprising if this is on Amazon's agenda.

With more and more major companies exploring cryptocurrency as a means of payment from customers, who will be inspired next?

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