People in France can now go to a local tobacco shop to buy bitcoin coupons. These coupons are available for 50, 100 and 250 euro. French crypto startup Keplerk joined forces with payment terminal company Bimedia. As a result 5200 tobacco shops all over the country are now selling bitcoin coupons, as reported my French media outlet BFMtv.
Keplerk did a test with a similar service earlier in the year. Long transaction times caused the project to halt. “Some people took up to eight hours to receive their bitcoins in their digital wallets,” said Adil Zakhar, CEO of the company to BFMtv.
The renewed service now has 5.5% commission instead of 7 percent for coupons of 250 euro. On top of that Keplerk is now only focused on bitcoin, while it used to support ethereum.
Tobacco shops already selling crypto
Even though the concept of buying bitcoin coupons sounds nice, it’s not the first time tobacco shops in France get in touch with crypto. In February French blockchain startup Digycode announced a partnership with point-of-sale provider Ingenico. As a result 10 thousand tobacco shops in the European country allowed consumers to buy cryptocurrencies.
It turns out that Keplerk and Digycode are competitors. Digycode is also selling vouchers, valued at 20, 50 or 200 euro. However, Digycode allows its consumers to buy several currencies; bitcoin, litecoin, ethereum, litecoin, XRP and dash.
France seeing crypto adoption
France is seeing a positive swing happening in its country, when it comes to crypto adoption at least. Early 2020 over 25 thousand stores in the country will accept bitcoin payments. At the same time France is not planning to tax cryptocurrency trades. Taxing will only happen when crypto is converted to euro.
Despite all the positive news, there’s also a drawback. The French government has taken a strong stance against Facebook’s libra stablecoin. They consider libra a danger for their own sovereignty. As a result the country considers launching a digital euro, an idea which is also growing in Germany.
Blockchain innovation coming from France
French companies are also becoming creative in the way they use blockchain technology. A small shoe company is putting its shoes on the blockchain to proof its authenticity. While gaming behemoth Ubisoft is investigating how it can use blockchain in its video games.
Also published on Medium.