Today, peer-to-peer payments and money transfer company MoneyGram and bitcoin kiosk operator Coinme have announced a partnership to enable cash purchases and sales of bitcoin at thousands of locations around the U.S.
“The MoneyGram and Coinme integration will provide a fast and easy way for customers to purchase bitcoin with cash and withdraw bitcoin holdings in cash,” per a press release shared with Bitcoin Magazine. “It is specially designed for customers who may be interested in utilizing bitcoin for the first time.”
MoneyGram operates an API-driven platform that allows users to transfer money across borders, while Coinme offers bitcoin for sale at some 20,000 physical locations, including through a high-profile partnership with Coinstar.
The service is set to be available at select MoneyGram locations in the U.S. in the coming weeks, with plans for it to expand internationally in the second half of the year.
“This innovative partnership opens our business to an entirely new customer segment,” said Alex Holmes, MoneyGram’s CEO, per the release. “Our unique, global network is an incredibly valuable asset, and we’re excited to open our platform to Coinme as we increasingly look to capture new growth by monetizing our network to new use cases.”
Obtaining bitcoin in exchange for cash in-person can be a powerful on-ramp for those who are underserved by traditional banks and can potentially be done in relatively KYC-free ways.