Why I Joined BitPay

rolf-haag

In my 14 years of solving global payments problems at PayPal and Western Union, I’ve grown certain of a few things. First, global business to business trade is absolutely massive (expected to be at $151 trillion by 20181) and crucial for increasingly connected local economies. Second, global payments remain slow, confusing, and increasingly expensive2. Third, the disruptive payments that FinTech companies are built on top of are still using the existing global payments infrastructure3. While FinTech businesses have improved local and global consumer payments, they have yet to meaningfully impact global B2B trade.

To truly fix the speed, cost, and certainty of global payments, we need new and freely available infrastructure to build those solutions. This new infrastructure needs to allow local small and medium businesses to go global without being eaten alive. It needs to enable SMB’s to send and receive global payments just as easily as global corporations. Finally, it needs to allow corporations to deploy their people and energy to their core business and away from overly-burdensome treasury and accounts payable / receivables processes.

Bitcoin and its blockchain is the first viable technology in 50 years to fit the bill for a new global payments infrastructure. Anyone can use it, everyone can see it, no one can reverse it, and it's borderless by its very nature.

But...

Local and global economies run on fiat (US Dollars, Euro, Japanese Yen, Korean Won, etc.). They are worried about terrorist financing, sanctions, and money laundering. Someone needs to bridge the gap between the Fiat world and the Crypto world – so Bitcoin’s certainty, speed and transparency can improve the way small and corporate businesses operate today and in the future.

That’s where BitPay comes in. BitPay processes crypto and crypto-to-fiat payments – enabling businesses and merchants to accept Bitcoin while delivering USD, GBP, or EUR directly to their bank accounts, in two business days, for a simple and transparent fee. Critically, BitPay removes Bitcoin price volatility from the equation. BitPay also works in reverse by allowing businesses to use their USD, GBP or EUR to deliver Bitcoin to their recipients en masse. BitPay has found success in being this bridge businesses need. Intrepid businesses are organically finding BitPay and driving BitPay’s domestic and cross-border B2B payments growth.

While I first discovered Bitcoin in 2010, it wasn’t until 2016 that I discovered BitPay – at which point they’d already been in business for 5 years! Remarkably, BitPay survived and thrived through multiple Bitcoin ‘crashes’ by solving real-world payments problems and constantly innovating while staying open to additional Cryptocurrencies and technological solutions.

BitPay processes more than $1B a year, and B2B payments is our fastest growing segment. Because BitPay only charges a simple 1% fee and settles within 2 business days, we’re already better than international wires, which can cost 3 – 4% and settle in 3 – 5 days. This makes BitPay Bitcoin payments cheaper and quicker in many parts of the world. Current B2B customers include technology vendors, import/exporters, real estate developers, professional services firms, and Fortune 500 enterprise customers. These businesses are executing payments more quickly and more cheaply than bank wires by accepting Bitcoin through BitPay today.

I’m thrilled to jump on the BitPay bus and build on BitPay’s early success in B2B and Mass Payments. Regardless of Bitcoin’s recent price volatility, the reality is that B2B Crypto payments are happening today! And we have a lot of disrupting to do in the future.

Onwards and Upwards!


  1. McKinsey & Co, “Global Payments 2016: Strong Fundamentals Despite Uncertain Times”, 2016
  2. Boston Consulting Group-SWIFT “International Payments: Accelerating Banks’ Transformation”, 2017 pg 10
  3. Boston Consulting Group-SWIFT “Global Payments 2017 Deepening the Customer Relationship”, 2017
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