Crypto Banking Service Planned By Bitwala

Announcements | February 28, 2018 By:

Crypto payment platform Bitwala has announced it is building an online bank account that will enable seamless transitions between the crypto and fiat worlds.

Bitwala is a global blockchain payment service provider headquartered in Berlin, Germany. In contrast to other money transfer services like Western Union, MoneyGram, and Transferwise, Bitwala utilizes cryptocurrency to claim a much faster and cheaper solution. It enables SEPA and SWIFT money transfers by exchanging bitcoin or alt-coins to over 20 fiat currencies to any bank account in over 200 countries worldwide.

The new online bank account service will combine all the features of traditional banking with the crypto economy. Account holders will be able to buy and sell cryptocurrencies alongside managing their daily expenses and setting up direct debits.

The company’s application with Germany’s Federal Financial Supervisory Authority (Bafin) is pending. Once approved, account holders’ funds will be guaranteed up to €100,000.

“Bitwala accounts will be fully regulated by the Federal Financial Supervisory Authority of Germany (BaFin) (current application pending), meaning your funds up to €100,000 will be guaranteed, in our case by the deposit guarantee scheme of German banks,” the company said.

The new Bitwala account will also come with a debit card that is linked to customers’ accounts.

“We will be issuing a contactless debit card, enabling you to spend your funds instantly in shops, online and at any ATM,” the company detailed, adding that customers’ balances “will be immediately available” on their Bitwala debit cards. Furthermore, the company says that debit cards will also “have much lower fees and higher spending limits,” compared to the prepaid cards the company previously offered.

In December 2015, Bitwala introduced a debit card that allows customers to use bitcoin to make POS and online payments and cash-out at ATMs. The bitcoin debit cards are issued by Wave Crest Holdings Limited pursuant to a license from Visa Europe, and supports over 40 cryptocurrencies.

However, on January 5, Bitwala announced that its debit cards had been disabled. At the time, Visa said it had terminated Wavecrest from their network for violating Visa’s operating regulations, confirming it had required the company “to close its Visa card products, some of which were linked to cryptocurrency wallets.”