New York has always been strict when it comes to bitcoin and cryptocurrency, but now that PayPal has entered the crypto fray, it looks like the company’s position in the Big Apple just got a whole lot easier.
PayPal Is Asserting Itself in New York
It has been announced that PayPal has been given what’s known to as a “conditional” BitLicense. The circumstances of the license are somewhat different from just a straight-up BitLicense application. The former permits PayPal to attach itself and work through a company that has already obtained a license.
This raises a lot of questions, perhaps the biggest one being, “Which company is PayPal aligned with?” At the time of writing, it looks like that company is Paxos Trust, which will handle the firm’s crypto custodial services.
It’s a positive and powerful notion for both PayPal and cryptocurrency enthusiasts alike. It shows that perhaps PayPal’s newfound respect and love for crypto isn’t part of a phase. After all, companies can change. Ex-CEO of PayPal Bill Harris has referred to bitcoin as a “scam” in the past, but with bitcoin garnering newfound status as a financial hedge of sorts, it’s possible that PayPal is seeing the light.
To go for a BitLicense or at least be acquainted with one also shows just how serious PayPal has become. Many companies have left New York over the years simply because the process of garnering a BitLicense can be rather complicated. Many claim that it puts unneeded pressure and problems on the shoulders of digital currency entrepreneurs, requiring them to pay high fees and undergo heavy monitorization.
Only a small handful of crypto companies have ever worked hard enough to get one. In all, just over 25 companies have garnered BitLicenses in the past five years.
The approval for PayPal’s conditional license was provided by New York Superintendent of Financial Services Linda Lacewell. As it stands, people using PayPal will have access to bitcoin, bitcoin cash, Litecoin and Ethereum during the initial stages of this new transition, though it’s possible more assets may be added in the future.
Not Everyone Will Have Access
Dan Schulman – president and CEO of PayPal – expressed his enthusiasm for the situation in a recent statement, claiming:
[The approval] represents an important step forward in our goal to contribute to the evolution of the regulatory framework for digital currency and help our consumers safely and responsibly engage with cryptocurrencies.
As it stands, crypto services through PayPal will not be available in all areas. Hawaii, for example, will not be privy to the company’s new digital offerings, along with other regions that will be outside the set jurisdictions. For most crypto lovers, however, the news is a massive step forward and is likely to ensure bitcoin gains further legitimacy in the coming months.