Two fintech operators are developing tech to equip 500 ATMs with Bitcoin functionality, and could add altcoins thereafter.
Australia could gain up to 500 two-way Bitcoin ATMs following a partnership between two native fintech firms.
Under the deal between Stargroup and Digital X, bespoke ATM software will run in tandem with a special API to ‘retrofit’ Stargroup’s standard ATMs with Bitcoin purchase and sales functionality.
Once complete, a full roll-out would see the number of Bitcoin ATMs increase in multiples from the current nationwide total of just 20 machines.
“This development may also be able to be applied to other cryptocurrencies and be distributed internationally,” Stargroup’s CEO Todd Zani said in an accompanying press release.
Australia has been comparatively quiet in the ATM sector until now. In the US, competition has heated up among manufacturers aiming to corner the market with roll-outs of dozens of machines across the country this year.
The move marks a show of confidence from Digital X, which in June received a $4.35 mln investment package from local consortium Blockchain Global.
“… We view this opportunity as a suitable fit to offer ordinary Australians exposure to cryptocurrency,” CEO Leigh Travers commented.
At legislative level, Australia has only now taking formal steps to regulate cryptocurrency, having approved Bitcoin as a legal currency last month.