File image: IOL.

CAPE TOWN - South African-based merchant payment system, Centbee has partnered with global blockchain group, nChain to develop a software toolkit where individuals will eventually be able to access Bitcoin Cash from a till-point. 

Through the partnership, nChain and Centbee developed a merchant point of sale (PoS) software development kit (SDK) for the worldwide market. 

What the SDK offers is an open-source set of tools, processes and interfaces that software developers and system integrators which will aim to make it easier for retailers to quickly accept Bitcoin Cash at the till-point. 

The partnership which was announced at the first CoinGeek conference on May 18 focused on how merchants can adopt Bitcoin Cash and essentially the growth of the Bitcoin commerce world. 

“nChain took an investment stake in Centbee in January this year. We have met several times (in London, Tokyo and Hong Kong) to share insights and collaborate. This announcement demonstrates how we are working together to make Bitcoin Cash widely used and trusted”, said Centbee CEO, Angus Brown and co-CEO Centbee, Lorien Gamaroff. 

When asked whether this partnership will actually enable customers to access Bitcoin Cash at a till-point, Brown and Gamaroff said that it is exactly their intention. 

“That is absolutely our intention, that any retailer can accept payment in Bitcoin Cash. We envisaged this being primarily a mobile phone payment- either by scanning a QR code or tapping an NFC-compatible phone on the merchant’s POS terminal”. 

         Picture: In Hong Kong this week for the conference are nChain Group CEO Jimmy Nguyen, Lorien Gamaroff, co-CEO Centbee, Dr                 Craig Wright, Chief Scientist nChain and Angus Brown, Centbee co-CEO. (Supplied). 

Brown and Gamaroff also said that this toolkit will make access to Bitcoin much easier. The merchant will not need to install new hardware or software. They will receive settlement in Rands in their existing bank accounts. They will also not have to worry about the exchange rate of Bitcoin Cash to Rands, said Brown and Gamaroff. 

The toolkit is essentially a set of software modules that allows retailers to integrate their existing Point-of-Sale software and hardware to the Bitcoin Cash network. 

Just last year, Centbee piloted the acceptance of Bitcoin payments at retail points of sale. The pilot project provided a Johannesburg based merchant with a QR code and made a payment by scanning the QR code from the Centbee app on a mobile phone. “The merchant received Bitcoin immediately, and chose to hold the Bitcoin and not convert to Rands”, said Brown and Gamaroff.  

Business Report then asked Brown and Gamaroff whether Bitcoin will be stable in coming years, giving its volatility over the past few months. They said that Bitcoin has grown exponentially over the past 10 years. 

“We think that Bitcoin Cash will be viewed in due course like the foundation layers of the internet- and most of the applications that provide value to customers are still to be uncovered”. 

“We encourage everyone to do some research, and try it out. Although a new area, regulators and merchants are starting to understand the potential to create new business models”, concluded Brown and Gamaroff. 

READ ALSO: SA's first cryptocurrency ATM comes to Joburg

ALSO READ: Cryptocurrency ATM installed in Zimbabwe

TOP STORY: Beware of new DSTV scam