A local startup wants to place Bitcoin ATMs in dozens of businesses in the Vancouver area.
“Just having one of these in your restaurant or venue, it’s going to bring in a lot of those younger, technical-savvy, future-thinking people,” Aaron Vaithilingam, office manager for Quadriga CX, told the Georgia Straight. “You want those kind of people coming into your business because they might be good future customers. Having one of these in your business shows you’re advancing and progressive thinking.”
Vaithilingam was interviewed at the Crypto Block Party, which took place on Sunday (June 15) as part of Car Free Day Vancouver’s Main Street festival. The event also featured representatives of the Bitcoin Co-op, Decentral.Bangtown, and Newnote Financial Corp.
(Update [June 20]: Vaithilingam emailed the Straight to clarify that Quadriga CX isn't sure if all 30 ATMs will be installed in the Vancouver area. Some of the ATMs will likely be placed in other Canadian cities.)
Quadriga CX plans to charge a three percent transaction fee on its Skyhook ATMs, which are compact and allow users to buy bitcoins with Canadian dollars. Half of the commission will go to the host business and the other half to Quadriga CX.
On their Portland-based manufacturer’s website, Skyhook ATMs sell for US$999 each. According to Vaithilingam, Quadriga CX has bought all of Skyhook’s available Canadian models for the coming months.
“These Skyhooks have really opened the door,” Vaithilingam said. “I think this could help it go mainstream. Just people seeing it and seeing Bitcoin, people will talk about it.”
Quadriga CX brought Lamassu and Skyhook ATMs to the Crypto Block Party, but only the former was working. The company’s office was the second place in Vancouver to install a Bitcoin ATM, and now there are at least five spots in the city hosting these machines (with another arriving in Burnaby).
Vaithilingam said the goal of placing the Skyhook ATMs is to get more people using Quadriga CX’s online currency exchange. The exchange allows users to trade bitcoins for Canadian dollars, U.S. dollars, and gold, and vice versa, and offers a variety of funding and withdrawal options.
This afternoon (June 16), one bitcoin was trading for $648 (Canadian) on Quadriga CX.
Vaithilingam noted that using Bitcoin allows people to avoid bank fees. He added that the cryptocurrency is getting easier to use everyday.
“Bitcoin is really for the people that want to control their money themselves and control their future themselves,” Vaithilingam said.