First Bitcoin Exchange to Accept Gold
Plenty of gold dealers accept Bitcoin, but early this month, QuadrigaCX became the first Bitcoin exchange to add gold to its roster. Alongside CAD, USD and XBT, clients in Canada can now buy and sell XAU (gold). Users can now both deposit and withdraw funds into their accounts via gold bullion, shipped or in person.
Founders Mike Patryn and Gerald Cotten wanted to provide a means for people to enter the crypto market without going through banks or fiat. “Other exchanges have allowed for coin-to-coin trading; we wanted to provide a more unique service,” said Mike. “As we have a great deal of past experience with gold trading, it was not a particularly large leap to enable XBT/XAU trades on our website.”
QuadrigaCX is the second Bitcoin exchange to come out of Vancouver, and the first in the world to physically trade Litecoin. The founders and directors of the exchange have contributed a lot to the Vancouver Bitcoin community, and are proud directors of the Bitcoin Cooperative. Lamassu ATMs linked to their exchange can be seen all over Vancouver at their office, Decentral.Bangtown, Steamrollers restaurant, and more on the way!
QuadrigaCX doesn’t have as much volume as older Canadian exchanges like VirtEx, making it more difficult for bulk customers. Regardless, its popularity has been quickly rising due to several interesting factors. Their no-fee promotional period may have come to an end, but their still the cheapest option in Canada at 0.5% trading fees, one third the cost of VirtEx. Deposits and withdrawals remain free of charge (minus what your bank bills you), and verified users can make instant same-day deposits.
The company has high hopes for their latest feature just like other new companies like Bitgold. While not a cryptocurrency itself, gold represents a means of storing value that remains of interest to many alternative currency users. Although not as easy to transmit as cryptocurrency (without relying on a central authority), gold is backed by direct economic demand, and still cannot be arbitrarily created. It’s also resilient to technological failure.
Anything can be lost or stolen, of course, but QuadrigaCX is big on security. Nobody wants their funds gambled on a fractional reserve system, so all deposits are backed by gold held in their vault, which the directors have years of experience storing and securing. Full details on their storage system are obviously unavailable, but their known security measures are comforting: their office itself lies behind a barred entrance, and neighbors the office of their security company.
QuadrigaCX hopes to stay heavily involved with the community going forward, and plans to give away $5 vouchers for their exchange at every opportunity. In the long run, they hope to expand to every major country except the United States. Their autosell feature, which allows you to automatically convert bitcoins deposited to your account, will attract a new demographic of users: those using a free program to accept Bitcoin can send their bitcoins to their account, if they want to avoid volatility. Rumor has it they’re contemplating adding altcoins to their online exchange, but nothing concrete has been confirmed.