Garry Pasfield had heard enough about Bitcoins and wanted to be the city’s first brick-and-mortar business to accept the currency.
So his bar, The Old Fitzroy, will host an evening called Beer for Bitcoins on September 29 to commemorate the new payment method.
The evening will also offer people a chance to learn about the currency and buy it from traders at the bar.
Pasfield said he was interested in the digital currency “because it is progressive.”
What’s more, as other small businesses are learning, there is a certain notoriety that comes with being a Bitcoin adopter at this point: Bitcoin enthusiasts are loyal and will flock to your business.
Pasfield said attracting a young, tech-savvy crowd was a key factor, as his bar serves a large cross-section of Sydney residents and visitors.
Plus, adopting the currency has zero added costs, so all the marketing that results is a free bonus.
Australia is keeping an eye on Bitcoin, though, and Pasfield will have to be mindful that he pays taxes on the AUD equivalent of BTC transactions his bar processes.
Sydney is a good place for any Bitcoin businesses to attract a following. The Sydney Bitcoin Users Group, with some 70 members, holds weekly meetings, and there are at least two other groups whose members number 60 or so.
Bitcoin groups can be found in just about every major city throughout Australia, and the country itself has its own Bitcoin Foundation, too.
Said Australian Bitcoin advocate Dale Dickins: “The number of people living in Australia with relatives overseas drives us to adopt new, inexpensive ways to connect with family. Until now there hasn’t been an inexpensive way to transfer money.”
The Old Fitzroy itself is a hotel with a bar and bistro in the neighborhood of Wooloomooloo, on the corner of Dowling and Cathedral streets. The bar’s point of sale device that will accept Bitcoins will create a QR code, which customers can then scan with their phones to pay for food or drinks.