Australians Hooked-up to Pay for Groceries With Bitcoin

Neil Dennis

Independent Grocers of Australia (IGA), a chain of independently-owned supermarkets, has teamed up with TravelbyBit to offer customers the opportunity to pay for goods in bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies.

Brisbane-based TravelbyBit, which offers travel booking services using bitcoin, litecoin and Binance's BNB coin, collaborated with the IGA Xpress store in Bowen Hills, Brisbane, to integrate its point-of-sale system, reported Nugget News on Friday.

In an interview with TravelbyBit co-founder Caleb Yeoh told Nugget that his company aimed to support "the little guy" and "the decentralized option". He added:

Regardless of whether I’m buying eggs, milk, fruit, or vegetables, I now have a way to pay for my groceries with cryptocurrency. The same goes for any other cryptocurrency owners shopping at Bowen Hills IGA.

Non-Profit Integration

Yeoh said TravelbyBit would receive no profit from its point-of-sale integration service, but hoped that it would prove successful in introducing merchants to the crypto alternative form of payment.

He added:

It all comes down to education. Introducing merchants to the world of cryptocurrency so that they may appreciate the benefits in their own time.

There are more than 1,400 IGA stores nationwide and Yeoh said he was aiming to introduce the technology to other branches, having been in contact with two other store operators. 

Currently TravelbyBit has integrated its point-of-sale system with around three-hundred merchants in Australia, which can be found on a map on the company's website.

Other Point-of-Sale Projects

Last year, crypto-exchange group Binance announced it had invested $2.5 million in TravelbyBit to build point-of-sale systems in global airports, following the success of its installation in Brisbane Airport.

Argentina’s Smallest Currency Denomination Now Worth Only One Satoshi

Michael LaVere
  • Argentina's smallest currency denomination, the centavo, is now worth one satoshi.
  • The country is in the midst of a currency crisis, with the inflation rate reaching 50 percent. 

Argentina’s smallest unit of currency has slumped in value to now be worth the equivalent of one satoshi. 

The Centavo, which has been in circulation since 1854, has joined the Lebanese Lira and Vietnamese Dong in being the same value as the smallest denomination for bitcoin. 

The currency’s fall in value was noted by Argentinian Reddit user u/OneMoreJuan, who used the Centavo’s plight as an example to invest in bitcoin. Another user in the comments claimed that scrap material for the Centavo was now worth more than the coin itself.

Argentina is one of several South American countries to undergo hyperinflation and currency crisis in recent years, with the government defaulting on its loans a record nine times. The country entered its third year of recession prior to the start of the coronavirus pandemic, after undergoing an economic crisis that first began in 2018. 

According to a report by Bloomberg, Argentina’s inflation has outpaced expectations, with the current rate reaching roughly 50 percent. 

Argentinians have responded to the devalued fiat by turning to bitcoin and crypto-assets in droves. Data aggregator Coindance shows a significant spike in weekly LocalBitcoins volume for Argentinian customers since the start of the year, reaching as high as $70 million in May.

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