The South African grocery retailer Pick n Pay is expanding its Bitcoin (BTC) (BTC) coverage to all 1,628 stores across the country following a three- 30 days pilot testing phase in 39 locations.
As part of its nationwide rollout, store customers will be able to pay for items using digital currency via smartphone applications or by scanning a QR code and accepting the South African rand’s conversion price at the time of payment.
Good news, everyone! CryptoQR is now active at all Pick-n-Pay stores across South Africa, including PnP express and clothing shops! You can likewise buy Airtime and Electricity, Plane and Bus tickets, and pay your municipal bills with #Bitcoin at the till! pic.twitter.com/3hVhgIJdTb
— CryptoQR ⚡️ (@CryptoConverted) February 1, 2023
To pay with BTC, customers will need a Bitcoin (BTC) Lightning Wallet and the CryptoQR scanner application from CryptoConvert, which is linked to the Bitcoin (BTC) Lightning Wallet. The payment process requires users to scan an item’s QR code through the CryptoQR application and then proceed to the Lightning Wallet to confirm the price and complete the transaction.
Twitter users shared their experience with using Bitcoin (BTC) to pay for everyday items at Pick n Pay stores:
My 1st #Bitcoin ⚡️payment at @PicknPay for a life essentially @CryptoConverted @ctw_podcast pic.twitter.com/tWSnGIH4Yd
— DrLuke ₿ (@DrLuke_B) February 1, 2023
The move came after the country’s financial regulating authority, the Financial Sector Conduct Authority (FSCA), amended its financial advisory legislation in October 2022 to classify cryptocurrency assets as financial products, bringing digital currencies under regulation for the 1st time in South Africa, and allowing financial service providers to offer crypto-assets both domestically and internationally.
The retail chain disclosed intends to roll out cryptocurrency payments nationwide in November 2022, after years piloting the service in selected stores. A 1st experiment with digital currencies took place in 2017, when the company began accepting Bitcoin (BTC) as a form of payment in Cape Town, but transaction costs and wait times hindered the process.
During its pilot program, Pick n Pay partnered with Electrum and CryptoConvert to enable customers to pay via the Bitcoin (BTC) Lightning Network, a Second layer added to BTC’s blockchain tech that allows off-chain transactions
Among the African countries, South Africa seems to be making considerable progress in adopting digital currency. South Africa ranks 30th universally in terms of digital currency adoption reports by Chainalysis’ 2022 Worldwide Cryptocurrency Adoption Index. It has been estimated that about 10 percent to 13 percent of the South African population holds cryptocurrency assets.