Skrill has announced a new crypto-to-crypto buy and sell service for its users. After launching a fiat-to-crypto on-ramping feature for users of its payment platform last year, this latest move represents a further reach into the cryptocurrency space for the London-based payments firm. With the introduction of crypto-to-crypto transfers, Skrill users will have access to faster and lower-fee transactions across their digital asset portfolio on the platform.
Skrill’s first foray into the cryptocurrency business came in 2018 when it launched a buy-and-sell service for its customers, enabling them to exchange their fiat account balances for cryptocurrencies. Before this latest development, if a Skrill user wanted to switch from, say, Bitcoin to Ether, they’d have to convert their BTC back to fiat and then buy some ETH.
Skrill CEO Lorenzo Pellegrino recently gave an interview in which he underlined his company’s commitment to making cryptocurrencies more accessible to users. Speaking of the new crypto-to-crypto buy and sell service, he stated:
“Cryptocurrency is an important part of what we do in digital wallets, and using our scale and vast experience of the payments industry, we’re continually enhancing our service to help our customers get the most out of the crypto ecosystem.”
The new service means they can buy ETH using their BTC balance, so they only pay fees for a single transaction. Currently, only BTC pairs are available via the service, but Skrill has said it expects to add more pairs soon.
The company has recently launched another new feature on its platform in the form of a loyalty program called Knect. Users can accrue points by using their Skrill wallet or prepaid credit card. Points are tradeable for a wide range of rewards, including cryptocurrencies on the Skrill platform.
Increasing Interest in Crypto from the Payment Sector
Skrill’s news is the latest from the online payment sector’s increasing interest in cryptocurrencies. The most high-profile this year has been PayPal (NASDAQ: PYPL)’s well-documented inclusion in the Facebook’s (NASDAQ: FB) Libra Association. However, the company turned its back on the project earlier this year. At the time, PayPal’s (NASDAQ: PYPL) statement was vague, saying only that it was choosing to focus on its own core business, but that it remained supportive of Libra’s goals. Many news outlets were quick to make the link with the increasing regulatory scrutiny the project was facing, particularly after other payment firms followed PayPal (NASDAQ:PYPL).
Recently though, PayPal (NASDAQ: PYPL) CEO Dan Schulman gave an interview to Fortune in which he elaborated further on his firm’s reasons for pulling out of Facebook’s (NASDAQ: FB) Libra project. He reiterated that PayPal (NASDAQ: PYPL) was choosing to focus on its own roadmap and intriguingly, alluded to the company’s R&D work in the blockchain space, highlighting identity as a specific use case.
Schulman’s interview came a day after it was reported that his firm had led a $4.2 million funding round for blockchain firm, TRM Labs. The company is aimed at helping financial institutions manage the compliance risks around digital asset investments and transactions. So it seems that we can expect more news from PayPal (NASDAQ:PYPL) in regards to its future involvement in blockchain and cryptocurrencies.
In other news, one of Skrill’s rival UK payments firms, TransferGo, has also recently confirmed it plans to migrate to Ripple’s payment rails by early next year.