While many businesses have expressed interest in integrating crypto payments, there are still challenges in terms of understanding the space, said Jess Houlgrave, the head of crypto strategy at Checkout.com.
Speaking to Cointelegraph, Houlgrave talked about the benefits and challenges of accepting crypto for merchants and shared her thoughts on what can spark and further the mainstream adoption of crypto payments.
Houlgrave said that the integration of crypto payments results in an increase in security, speed and efficiency. It could replace traditional payment systems which are plagued with middlemen, high fees, payment delays and fraud risks, she stated.
Along with the benefits, Houlgrave highlighted that there are also challenges for businesses in terms of understanding how to account for accepting crypto, learning how to secure custody of crypto profits, managing price volatility and applying for tax. Because of these, the executive explained that firms opt to outsource their crypto payment operations. She said:
“Increasingly, merchants are accepting crypto payments via a third party who will convert to, and settle in, fiat so that the merchant doesn’t bear price volatility risk versus their expenses.”
Apart from these, the payment executive noted that among the financial officers that they’ve talked with in one of their firm’s recent surveys, the primary reason for not accepting crypto within their companies is regulatory uncertainty surrounding the space.
In this regard, Houlgrave mentioned that there’s also a lot of misinformation in the space and that educating large players will be crucial for them to adopt crypto as a payment method. She said:
“By educating these larger players about the advantages and use cases of crypto we can shift the needle, especially for those who can incorporate crypto into their businesses in a meaningful way.”
She further believes that for crypto to compete with other payment methods, there's a need to develop a more seamless user experience for consumers and merchants.
In June, Checkout.com launched a stablecoin settlement system using USD Coin (USDC) to help merchants process crypto payments and automatically convert digital asset payments into fiat. Houlgrave explained that the system allows companies to have increased access to their cash flow and mitigate volatility risks.