Overstock Will Accept Alt-Coins As Payment

Announcements, Blockchain, FinTech, Innovation, News | August 9, 2017 By:

Overstock.com, Inc. will now accept everything from legacy bitcoin to Bitcoin Cash, Litecoin, Monero, Ether and other alt-coins as payment for its goods, thanks to a partnership with asset exchange Shapeshift.  It is the first major retailer to make the leap into multiple alt-coins for payments.

A pioneer in digital technologies, Overstock offers nearly four million products, including furniture, accessories, bedding, decor, and rugs, among other items. ShapeShift allows digital currencies to be converted between different coin types in a matter of seconds, all without any account setup or personal data required. The funds are sent to a specific address, with the blockchain record of the transaction acting as both the order and the receipt.

Here’s how it works: during checkout, customers will select their preferred cryptocurrency and submit the order before being prompted to transfer the coins, just as they would with any other digital wallet transaction. Overstock will then use ShapeShift to convert the cryptocurrencies to bitcoin. Refunds from a cryptocurrency purchase will also be made in bitcoin,but customers can convert those back to their preferred cryptocurrency through ShapeShift.

“Overstock is pro-freedom, including the freedom of individuals to communicate information about value and scarcity without relying on a medium created through the fiat of unaccountable government mandarins,” said CEO Patrick M. Byrne. “For that reason, we have been an early proponent and adopter of cryptocurrencies.”

Overstock became the first major retailer to accept bitcoin in early 2014 and issued the world’s first blockchain stock with its Series A Preferred offering in late 2016 on the t0 platform. Despite its innovation, the investment moves have, to date, been costly – Overstock subsidiary Medici Ventures just reported a second quarter loss of $3.3 million before taxes, blaming its expansion of its blockchain securities market, T Zero. This followed a first quarter loss of $8 million. 

Medici has invested in several blockchain startups as well, including Bitt, PeerNova, IdentityMind and Factom.