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Editing by Nathaniel Cajuday
- Pouch.ph now has over 400 small businesses accepting Bitcoin payments, expanding beyond their initial success in Boracay to key cities like Cebu City, Dumaguete, Iloilo, and Bacolod City.
- The payments provider also enables Bitcoin payments in Metro Manila through establishments such as URBN QC, Draper Startup House, and KosneyLand, providing alternative payment options to credit cards and e-wallets.
- Consequently, Pouch.ph offers a Batch Pay feature that streamlines payroll processes and allows for immediate transfers of funds to employees, suppliers, and recipients, with plans to expand the service to over-the-counter remittances through partners like LBC, M Lhuillier, and Palawan Pawnshop.
Almost a year after BitPinas reported the transformation of Boracay into a “Bitcoin Island,” Bitcoin payments provider Pouch.ph, the firm behind the island’s transformation, revealed that the number of businesses and merchants that accept and process Bitcoin payments across the country has now surpassed the 400 mark.
Bitcoin Payments in PH
Reaching beyond its initial success on “Boracay Bitcoin Island,” Pouch has rapidly expanded its presence in the Philippines. In a statement, the firm disclosed that it recently onboarded merchants in key cities such as Cebu City, Dumaguete, Iloilo, and Bacolod City.
Moreover, the firm also revealed that they now have a presence in Metro Manila through establishments like URBN QC, Draper Startup House, and KosneyLand, which all have started accepting Bitcoin as payment through the Pouch.ph platform.
“One of the most significant challenges for the growth of small businesses is the availability of payment methods, with credit cards charging fees up to three percent. With the growing number of internet and smartphone users in the Philippines, Bitcoin as a payment method will allow those who do not have credit cards or even local fiat currency to make online or in-store purchases. We’re helping businesses open up a vast market that was previously untapped,” said Pouch.ph CEO Ethan Rose.
Pouch.ph Batch Payments
In addition to facilitating payments, Pouch.ph also highlighted that they also provide partner merchants with the convenience of a “Batch Pay,” a feature that streamlines payroll processes and allows for immediate transfers of funds to employees, suppliers, and other recipients.
According to the payments provider, to ensure efficient transactions, Batch Payments will support transfers to major banks and e-wallets. Pouch also disclosed that it is in the process of expanding its Batch Pay services to include over-the-counter remittances through trusted partners like LBC, M Lhuillier, and Palawan Pawnshop.
Last month, Pouch and Neutronpay forged a partnership to expand their Bitcoin payment services to Canada and Vietnam. The collaboration aims to provide seamless and secure cryptocurrency payment solutions to businesses in these countries, enabling wider adoption of Bitcoin as a payment method.
Pouch and Strike, a global payments company, also collaborated last February to enhance the capabilities of Pouch’s Bitcoin payment platform by leveraging Strike’s technology. With this integration, Pouch users are expected to enjoy faster and more efficient Bitcoin transactions, further promoting the adoption of cryptocurrency payments in the Philippines.
Pouch in Boracay
After a year since they announced their “Bitcoin Island” initiative, there are now over 250 local businesses in Boracay that encompass a diverse range of establishments, including convenience stores, cafes, hotels, and restaurants.
Last March 27–29, 2023, Pouch.ph and Coins.ph jointly organized the inaugural Bitcoin Island Retreat in Boracay, which united key figures, investors, and enthusiasts in the Bitcoin community for networking opportunities and insightful discussions on the technology.
During the conference, Erielyn Gaston, the proprietor of Kasbar restaurant, shared how incorporating Bitcoin as a payment option has expanded her customer reach and bolstered sales. In a panel discussion, she expressed gratitude for the convenience provided by Pouch.ph, which serves as an alternative payment method to credit cards and e-wallets—common modes of payment in Boracay.
“It’s very convenient to have a payment service that’s fast and easily available so that for us, in regards to increasing the revenue, it allows people to stay longer because the other alternative is there is one of these ATMs that are not from the banks the tourists [use]. If you ever add up the fees they charge for credit card users minus the exchange rate difference, you end up paying 10% to 11% if you withdraw from these ATMs,” TIB Market manager Marcel Selfer added.
This article is published on BitPinas: 400+ Merchants Now Accept Bitcoin Payments in PH, Pouch.ph Says
Featured Photo from Jiro Reyes.
Disclaimer: BitPinas articles and its external content are not financial advice. The team serves to deliver independent, unbiased news to provide information for Philippine-crypto and beyond.