Digital Assets: AXA Allows Customers To Pay Bills With Bitcoin
The new payment option will be available from April for all non-life products.
AXA has become the first all-lines insurer in Switzerland to accept payments from customers in bitcoin. The company’s decision stems from a 2019 survey of people between the ages of 18 to 55 and their views on cryptocurrencies. AXA (EPA: CS) found that about a third of respondents already owned them or intended to do so. That trend received a fillip from the digital transformation propelled by the pandemic. (AXA Switzerland)
The decision to accept bitcoin payments, therefore “represents an investment in the company’s digital future,” AXA said in a blog.
AXA and bitcoin payments
Customers who received an AXA bill via email can now pay it using their bitcoin wallet, the reference number of the bill, and the amount.
The amount of bitcoin is remitted to AXA via crypto broker Bitcoin Suisse who converts it back to fiat at the point of transfer. AXA clarifies that it holds no bitcoins on its balance sheet.
Customers entering a bitcoin payment do not face the risk of an exchange rate fluctuation if they complete the transaction within a certain time span.
Also, AXA doesn’t charge any special fees for bitcoin payments. However, the bitcoin exchange rate provided by the broker includes a commission of 1.75% to cover blockchain transaction, currency exchange, and other fees.
“This is AXA’s response to growing demand from its customers for alternative payment solutions, with new technologies playing an ever-greater role,” says Claudia Bienentreu, Head of Open Innovation at AXA Switzerland.
Meanwhile, across the Atlantic, the 200-year old wine shop and auction house Acker revealed that it is now accepting cryptocurrencies for goods and services via payment processor Bitpay.
“Cryptocurrencies are no longer a passing fad, and, as one of the oldest licensed businesses in America, Acker is proud to accept this novel form of payment as we continue to evolve in our third century as a company,” Chairman John Kapon remarked.
Related Story: Visa Signals Potential ‘Mainstream’ Adoption of Bitcoin
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