Christopher Isaac “Biz” Stone, co-founder of Twitter and Medium, is backing the London-based fintech firm Mode, which is launching a bitcoin banking app.
According to a recent statement, Mode is looking to make bitcoin “accessible to everyone at the touch of a button” through its “easy to use” new banking app that’s available to users throughout the world, except the United States of America.
The firm claims an account can be opened in less than 60 seconds, and know-your-customer (KYC) checks can be completed in under two minutes through “AI-enabled identity verification technology.” The app supports the UK’s faster payments scheme for instant GBP transfers allowing users to buy BTC from £50 (around $65).
Behind its launch, the statement reads, there was conducted research suggesting BTC investors aren’t happy with the services currently available to them, even though they plan on buying more bitcoin. A conducted survey found 42% of respondents who own bitcoin want to buy more, while 51% who don’t are looking to buy bitcoin in the near future.
The Mode app will let users buy bitcoin with their bank cards or via bank transfer, charging a fee of 0.99% when buying or selling the flagship cryptocurrency. The bitcoin will be custodied by BitGo. In its statement the firm made it clear it was going to expand its services:
In addition to its new app, Mode has also announced plans to launch a Bitcoin interest-generating product later this year, which would allow users to earn passive income on their Bitcoin holdings without having to touch their assets.
Biz Stone is serving as an advisor of Mode, and acts as a non-executive director of its parent company R8. Notably Jack Dorsey, another Twitter co-founder and the CEO of the microblogging platform, is a known bitcoin supporter.
Dorsey’s other firm, Square, has formed a cryptocurrency development arm, Square Crypto, which has funded a pseudonymous Bitcoin developer, ZmnSCPxj, known for his work on BTC’s layer-two scaling solution, the Lightning Network. Square has also been letting users buy BTC using its Cash app, and is reportedly building a lightning development kit to help wallet developers.