LONDON – PayPal on Monday said it will this week begin to allow users in Britain to buy, hold and sell cryptocurrency through the online payment platform for the first time.
The expansion into the hot digital money trend follows similar moves by the payments giant in the United States earlier this year.
The US firm said its new service would allow UK-based customers to choose from four types of cryptocurrency: Bitcoin, Ethereum, Litecoin and Bitcoin Cash.
They will be available both via the PayPal app and its website, with the expansion set to start this week and be available to all eligible customers within the next few weeks.
A new cryptocurrency tab will be added to its platform, showing real-time currency prices, PayPal said.
“The pandemic has accelerated digital change and innovation across all aspects of our lives, including the digitisation of money and greater consumer adoption of digital financial services,” said Jose Fernandez da Ponte, of PayPal.
He added the firm hoped the new offering would “help people in the UK to explore cryptocurrency”.
“We are committed to continue working closely with regulators in the UK, and around the world, to offer our support and meaningfully contribute to shaping the role digital currencies will play in the future of global finance and commerce.”
In April PayPal owned mobile payments service Venmo began letting users in the US buy, hold or sell cryptocurrency using its app.
That followed PayPal itself in March allowing people there to use cryptocurrency to make purchases from millions of merchants that use the financial platform for online transactions.