Mercedes owner Daimler AG has announced its takeover of PayCash Europe, a provider of Bitcoin payment services alongside others, in a move that will see the corporation venture into mobile payments.
Mercedes Buys Bitcoin Services Provider
PayCash, which also offers solutions for Bitcoin and cryptocurrencies, is a Luxembourg-regulated licensed e-money transmitter. It will be used by Daimler to launch mobile payments for Daimler products and services under the Mercedes Pay brand.
“‘Mercedes pay’ is a fundamental component of our mobility and digitization strategy,” Bodo Uebber, Member of the Board of Management of Daimler AG commented in a press release Tuesday. He added that mobile payment options were part of a plan “to make the products and services we offer even more appealing.”
PayCash describes its activities as a “backend solution providing the technical and legal platform to implement the virtual currency into the existing payment infrastructure and enables payments to be processed in all major fiat currencies.” The company also provides cryptocurrency-supporting POS terminals.
While Daimler does not explicitly highlight PayCash’s cryptocurrency acceptance tools as a part of its future strategy, this function is nonetheless mentioned in the accompanying press release.
“‘Mercedes pay’ will mainly benefit customers who, in the future, will only need to provide their payment details one time, in order to be able to use a range of Daimler’s services. This is made possible by the eWallet function, a virtual source of payment,” Klaus Entenmann, Chairman of the Board of Management of Daimler Financial Services added.
Beyond Mercedes Purchases
It is not just direct Mercedes offerings which are set to fall under the Mercedes Pay umbrella.
Daimler has its fingers in several pies for consumers, including car-sharing app car2go and taxi app mytaxi. In future, payments for such services could be moving ahead of the game.
Daimler stated that it “plans to use the new payment system to facilitate these and other financing transactions in the future.”
Potential Market Lies in Wait
There has so far been little noise from the automotive industry regarding the potential for cryptocurrency or even Blockchain use to spark change. However, the trend of integrating payments with automobiles is being accelerated by the likes of Visa, for example.
Additionally, Bentley announced in October a facility offering customers at-home refueling from their smartphones, while Cadillac launched a ‘booking’ service for more flexible sampling of its models.
While the automotive industry takes its first steps in regard to potential crypto integration, it is worth noting that the potential already exists in terms of consumer interest.
Across the water in the US, Texas is leading the way in introducing crypto payments for transportation on a practical level.
In Austin especially, decentralized ride-sharing services such as Arcade City and Cell 411 are the first in a market which demonstrates huge potential.
In Europe meanwhile, extensive research has already been published detailing how cryptocurrency and Blockchain technology could be used for the automotive industry’s benefit in the coming years.
Could Daimler’s acquisition pave the way for the automotive industry to integrate cryptocurrency payments? Let us know in the comments below!
Images courtesy of Shutterstock, mytaxi, businesswire.com