In recent weeks, the Cointelegraph has run into ZipZap founder and CEO Alan Safahi on a couple of occasions. We took the opportunity to ask him a few questions regarding ZipZap, Bitcoin and the future of money.
Cointelegraph: What is the status of ZipZap’s ability to process Bitcoin transactions with PayPoint?
Alan Safahi: We are keeping communication lines open and making progress as more clarity comes out of government about Bitcoin in the UK.
CT: Through what other means, if any, are you focusing on the UK market?
AS: We are relaunching in the UK with another cash payment provider with 20,000 locations in the next few weeks.
CT: Are there plans to expand further into South America? How would you approach a market such as Argentina or Venezuela?
AS: We are finalizing integration with cash and bank to bank payment transfers in eight Latin American countries for launch in June 2014. Argentina and Venezuela are not in that list due to challenges with banking and regulation, but we are trying hard on both fronts.
CT: What were some of your takeaways from Bitcoin Conference 2014 in Amsterdam?
AS: Unfortunately, I had meetings back to back and did not get to attend many sessions, but I plan on watching them all online in the coming weeks. In general, I was very impressed with the venue and the quality of attendees worldwide.
CT: Can you also tell us a bit about your experience as an advisor to Ripple Labs and HelloBit?
AS: I advise Ripple Labs CEO, Chris Larson, on overall strategies and the interaction of Bitcoin and Ripple. I also advise HelloBit and two other stealth startups in digital currencies for overall strategy and fundraising.
CT: You certainly see an opportunity in Bitcoin’s ability to make remittances easier and cash transactions in general frictionless. How do you imagine the next year or two unfolding for cryptocurrency economies?
AS: I see remittance as the BEST use case for Bitcoin at the moment and am working tirelessly to build the onramp and offramp to fiat currencies to facilitate a low cost remittance solution by the end of this year.
The next couple of years will be very critical for digital currencies, with regulation clarity across the globe, significant cash injections by VCs and innovations in technology signalling the beginning of mass adoption.
I call this the Age of Enlightenment for Payments, leading to separation of bank and state and a global payment renaissance which will eventually result in financial inclusion for billions of people currently ignored by the traditional payment providers.