When Satoshi Nakamoto was released the whitepaper for Bitcoin, his vision was simple: create a form of electronic money that allows payments to be sent without the intervention of a bank.
Few could have foreseen how popular the cryptocurrency would become – let alone its impressive $ 635 billion market cap. But Bitcoin’s success largely depends on how this digital asset is often bought and kept for speculation. According to a recent Binance survey, only 11% of those who own crypto use it to make payments.
Amazon and eBay have shown little interest in rolling out support for digital assets, a move that would allow millions of users to freely spend their crypto. A long-standing irony is how to buy pro Bitcoin shirts on both platforms … but only in cash.
Waiting for these ecommerce titans to embrace crypto might not be the best approach either. Bitcoin has been around for over a decade, Ether was first launched in 2015 and thousands of altcoins have followed in their footsteps. Smaller independent retailers have begun to allow large coins to be used for retail therapy, but many of these merchants are based in niche sectors and have a limited range of products.
As a result, the consensus is growing that the crypto sector should build its own answer to Amazon and eBay. The benefits go beyond that digital assets can finally be used for their intended purpose. Taking this initiative will prevent capital from flowing to tech titans who have been generating billions of dollars in profit for 15 minutes. In fact, it can also lead to a fairer ecosystem – one where small businesses selling their wares pay lower fees and protect their wafer-thin profit margins.
Financial freedom? Don’t count on that
For the ecommerce startups building crypto-centric platforms, it’s not just about making it easy to buy a pair of sneakers with Bitcoin. It’s about providing true financial inclusion for all – and delivering blockchain technology to millions of people.
If you want to buy anything on Amazon or eBay right now, you need a debit card – and you need a bank account for this. That is little comfort for the hundreds of millions of people who do not have access to these financial services. Getting a credit card presents even more hurdles to jump through as you need to prove that you have a stable income and meet a bank’s strict credit criteria. And while prepaid cards that can be topped up with cash are available, they are often subject to skyrocketing transaction costs.
All of this has contributed to a world where it is almost impossible to make purchases without the intervention of a bank. And while cryptocurrencies can be converted to fiat to make ecommerce purchases, this process can eventually become tricky and time consuming.
DeFi for you positions itself as the crypto industry’s answer to Amazon and eBay. The platform aims to support small and medium businesses by enabling them to sell their products in exchange for digital assets.
In addition to democratizing the retail world, the company has bold ambitions to shake up the credit world by allowing anyone to set up their own pawnshops and issue short-term loans backed by smart contracts. Using blockchain technology, a person can prove that they are trustworthy over time and can access preferential credit terms – without having to meet a bank’s strict criteria.
Through DeFi For You, users become their own bank – and get the chance to start their own business.
In a recent AMA session with Cointelegraph, Adam C. Chaplin, CEO of DeFi For You, said he was inspired by a documentary about a Marbella pawnshop that specialized in allowing wealthy people to use their luxuries as collateral – for high net worth individuals who may run into cash flow problems from time to time.
“We’re helping the bankless, we’re helping the top end of the market, we can open this up to literally millions of people – and micro-credits are big too,” Chaplin said.
There is one hurdle that kept Amazon and eBay from accepting crypto: concerns about scalability. The Ethereum blockchain has become extremely popular under DeFi protocols over the past 12 months, but all this congestion has caused the network to crack under pressure. DeFi For You has responded by opting for the Binance Smart Chain, which offers higher speeds and lower costs thanks to a block time of between three and five seconds.
DeFi For You is holding a 24-hour first DeFi offering on the Binance Smart Chain, starting at 10:00 PM UTC on Jan 31.
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