- Luxury fashion-house Gucci announced it would begin accepting bitcoin in physical stores.
- The feature rollout is a pilot beginning in five U.S. locations with plans to extend it to all stores in North America directly owned by the company.
- It is unclear whether Gucci will automatically convert payments received in cryptocurrencies to fiat currency like the U.S. dollar.
Gucci is launching a pilot to test the acceptance of bitcoin in five of the luxury fashion house’s U.S. stores with plans to extend the functionality to all non-franchise North American shops, according to a report from Vogue Business
Initially, the Gucci stores that will accept BTC are at Wooster Street in New York, Rodeo Drive in Los Angeles, Miami Design District, Phipps Plaza in Atlanta and The Shops at Crystals in Las Vegas.
“Gucci is always looking to embrace new technologies when they can provide an enhanced experience for our customers,” Marco Bizzarri, Gucci president and CEO, reportedly said. “Now that we are able to integrate cryptocurrencies within our payment system, it is a natural evolution for those customers who would like to have this option available to them.”
Customers will be able to pay with bitcoin and a handful of other cryptocurrencies. The store will send a QR code to the customer’s email, allowing customers to interact with the wallet of choice.
Gucci’s process will leverage an undisclosed service provider to pool bitcoin price values from multiple cryptocurrency exchanges in real time in an attempt to determine the most accurate BTC amount with which to charge the customer.
When an item is returned by a customer, the company plans to pay them back with the cryptocurrency used at the time of purchase.
The report states that typical retailer setups enabling companies like Gucci to accept cryptocurrencies usually consist of the retailer automatically converting the cryptocurrency into fiat. However, it is not directly stated whether Gucci plans to make an instant conversion to U.S. dollars or hold the bitcoin received as payment.