With the rise of Bitcoin, merchants needed a way to securely accept payments using Bitcoin (BTC) and Bitcoin Cash (BCH). BitPay was born.
What is BitPay?
The Bitcoin processing firm was co-founded by Stephen Pair who serves as the firm’s CEO and Tony Gallippi who is the firm’s Executive Chairman. The firm is based in Atlanta in the United States and started its operations in 2011.
Since then, BitPay has accumulated a customer base of over 40,000 merchants who are scattered around the world. The firm helps merchants to securely allow their customers to pay for products and services using Bitcoin and or Bitcoin Cash.
Three years after launch, BitPay had started processing one million U.S dollars worth of Bitcoin in 24 hours making it one of the largest Bitcoin payment processors in the world. In 2019, the firm released a report showing that it facilitated one billion transactions in 2018.
Apart from processing BTC payments on behalf of merchants, the firm has also developed a credit/debit card called BitPay Card which can be loaded with Bitcoin and can be swiped on any Visa-branded outlet.
To get the card, you will be required to pay close to 10 U.S dollars ($9.99). The purchase is made on BitPay’s website. The firm them ships the card to the address provided during registration. Some of the information required includes your social security number, an email address, and a physical address.
After receiving the card, you will then be required to visit the BitPay website to finalize the card activation process. The activation process will require you to fill in the card’s CVV code plus the card number together with an email address.
BitPay merchant registration
In order for BitPay to offer services to a merchant, the merchant needs to register with the firm. During the merchant registration process, BitPay will need to be furnished with:
- Name and phone number of the individual creating the account
- Business name and address
- Business information
Note that the information provided will be reviewed and a response given within a few days after application. If the verification process completes and business is added on the list of customers, a link will be emailed to the address provided to further setup the new account.
BitPay will then require the business to specify the currency to which Bitcoin payments will be converted to. Here, the list of currencies includes the United States dollar, the Mexican Pesos, the South African Rand, the Australian/ New Zealand dollar, the Euro or Pound. Instead of converting the BTC into its fiat equivalent, BitPay allows the merchant to either keep the payments in BTC or just convert a specified percentage.
Accounts on the platform can take three different levels:
Registered: With this account level, BitPay will only process 100 U.S dollars in every 24 hours.
Basic: Here, the firm will process 1,000 U.S dollars per day and the review will be complete within 1 to 3 days.
Verified: This level enables processing up to 10,000 U.S dollars per day. Verification takes a minimum of two days and a maximum of 4 days. During this time, the firm will send an email requesting the merchant to submit documents to prove the business address, incorporation documents, tax ID number, and photo identification.
Trusted: A merchant account on the trusted level will be able to handle Bitcoin sales worth 100,000 U.S dollars. Additional verification documents will be requested.
Where can BitPay be integrated
The payment processing firm allows its services to be integrated with online platforms such as:
E-commerce platforms where the firm says it’s as easy as “flipping a switch”, shopping cart plugins, and website payment buttons. For in-store payments, BitPay provides integrations with Point-of-Sale or the BitPay checkout application.
The BTC processing firm also allows non-profit organizations to receive crypto donations. The firm allows Email billing where a BTC and or BCH invoice can be created and emailed to clients. These invoices can then be scheduled to recur automatically or just be created as a one-time thing. Other services geared towards donations include cross-border billing and billing service integrations.
For those developing mobile applications on major platforms like iOS and Android, the firm provides the BitPay mobile SDK (software development kit) to facilitate BTC in-app purchases.
BitPay has over the years helped merchants to overcome the volatility issue by ensuring almost instant conversion of their BTC payments. The firm has also helped crypto enthusiasts to easily spend their digital wealth by way of a crypto visa card.
BitPay has helped gauge the uptake of cryptocurrency by both individuals and merchants across the globe which has been rising since 2011 when the firm was launched.