South African Bitcoin exchange debuts mobile wallet
Wednesday, November 19, 2014
BitX, the Bitcoin exchange launched last year, has released a mobile application that it hopes will help emerging markets better understand and use the cryptocurrency.
The app allows anyone to buy or sell Bitcoin and functions as a wallet to store the virtual currency.
BitX is headquartered in Singapore, but most of its development is done in Cape Town. The company operates exchanges in South Africa, Malaysia, Kenya and Namibia. It’s the largest Bitcoin exchange in Africa and in 2013 was acquired by Stellenbosch-based Switchless, a company that develops enterprise cryptocurrency software for banks, private wealth managers and brokerage firms.
BitX CEO Marcus Swanepoel co-founded Switchless in 2013. “We believe there is very strong future for cryptocurrencies to disrupt financial markets and financial systems in a very positive way,” says Swanepoel. “As a long term hypothesis, we believe that cryptocurrencies in emerging markets are going to play a really big role because of inefficient financial systems.”
Swanepoel says BitX is building an emerging-markets platform for distributing cryptocurrency products — at the moment Bitcoin is simply the one with the highest demand.